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<img src=http://cdn.nhl.com/canucks/images/upload/2009/11/nov2209_puck_rr.jpg class="imageFloatRightFramed">A 3-2-0 record represents a good, but not great, numbers for a home stand. But we've got some great numbers for the Canucks Community to chew on in this week's edition of Number Crunching.


What's an even rarer sight than a Canucks home loss this season? A night where the Canucks are dominated in the faceoff dot.

Heading into the Sunday's game, the Canucks had lost the faceoff battle just once in their previous 12 games. The Canucks won just 24 of 57 total faceoffs against the Sharks - good for just a 42 percent success rate.

Statistically, it was actually their second worst night in the faceoff circle. Their only worst outing this season was back on October 11th against the Dallas stars when they won just 37 percent of the draws (19 draws won on 52 faceoffs).

Losing the faceoff battle hasn't exactly spelled disaster for the Canucks however. They are 4-3-0 this season in games where they finish below 50 percent in the faceoff circle.


If for nothing else, this past week of Canucks hockey will be remembered for finally shaking the monkey off several of the players' backs - most notably Alex Burrows, Alex Edler and Kyle Wellwood.

Burrows was the first to bump the slump when he tallied the first goal of the game on Thursday against the Los Angeles Kings - marking his first goal in seven games and his first goal scored against a goaltender in 19 games. Finally reunited on a fully healthy top line, Burrows has a solid week scoring twice and adding an assist in three games.

<img src=http://cdn.nhl.com/canucks/images/upload/2009/11/nov2609_wellwood_t.jpg class="imageFloatRightFramed">In that same game against the Kings, Kyle Wellwood not only tallied his first goal of the season and first in 24 regular season games overall, he also scored arguably the most dramatic empty-net goal in the history of the NHL. After having a goal stripped taken away from him just 13 minutes earlier, Wellwood finally deposited his first of the season into an empty net by sniping a top shelf beauty past makeshift goalie Drew Doughty. Wellwood wrapped up the week but showing he actually can beat a real goaltender, scoring on San Jose's Evgeni Nabokov in the first period of Vancouver's 4-2 loss to the Sharks.

Rounding out the week for slump busters was Alex Edler who tallied his first of the season on Saturday night against the Edmonton Oilers - his first goal in 33 regular season games dating back to March 27th. Edler was just one of two Canucks to record points in all three games last week. The other was Steve Bernier.

Which Canucks are the next on our list to watch break slumps? Here are the top three on our Number Crunching list:

Kevin Bieksa: no goals in 25 games and counting.

Sami Salo: no points in 11 games and no goals in 39 games and counting.

Ryan Johnson: no goals in 55 games and counting.


<img src=http://cdn.nhl.com/canucks/images/upload/2009/11/nov2909_glass_t.jpg class="imageFloatLeftFramed">He got some mock jeers at GM Place on Thursday night when he was given credit for a goal that was initially thought to have been scored by Kyle Wellwood, but while the fans might have given him a bit of a rough ride, Number Crunching gives plenty of love to the Tanner Glass.

Just how unheralded was Tanner Glass when he signed with the Canucks as a free agent on August 5, 2009? The Canucks media guide does not even have him listed in the featured players section instead listing him with the other 'In the System' players alongside the likes of Guillaume Desbiens, Taylor Ellington, and Evan Oberg. Conversely, Brad Lukowich (currently on loan to the AHL's Texas Stars) is given a two-page spread as are all roster mainstays (Roberto Luongo is allotted a four-page spread).

While five points (4-1-5) in 22 games played isn't necessarily something to write home about, for Tanner Glass it has already shattered some of his previous career highs. Prior to joining the Canucks, the Regina native had all of two career NHL points in 44 games played. The only career stat Glass hasn't matched or surpassed at this point is his record for games played in a single season. He appeared in a career-high 41 games in 2007.08 with the Florida Panthers.

NUMBER CRUNCHING PLAYER OF THE WEEK (for the week ending Sunday, November 29th)

The NHL has their weekly awards, so why not Number Crunching? Our inaugural Number Crunching Player of the Week award goes to:

<img src=http://cdn.nhl.com/canucks/images/upload/2009/11/nov2009_edler2_t.jpg class="imageFloatRightFramed">Alexander Edler: Five points (1-4-5) in three games played. Edler had a season-high three points (1-2-3) on Saturday against the Oilers and despite all the heat he's taken from media and fans alike for his lack of production, his 16 points on the season have him just one point behind Christian Ehrhoff for most points by a Canucks blue-liner.


At Number Crunching, we don't hold back on praise but we also don't hold back on criticism. Here is the player(s) we are calling out this week:

<img src=http://cdn.nhl.com/canucks/images/upload/2009/11/205x115_1_112209.jpg class="imageFloatLeftFramed">Kevin Bieksa, Sami Salo, and Mathieu Schneider: Combined zero points (0-0-0) in three games played. They are supposed to key offensive cogs on the Canucks blue-line but the trio was completely shutout for the week in the points column. That stat is even more eye-popping when you consider the Canucks had a banner night on Saturday on the power play scoring four times on five man-advantages.

Sami Salo is the only one of the three that was actually on the ice for a power play goal on Saturday, but even that might be a tad misleading. He happened to be on the ice for Mason Raymond's power play goal which, many will recall, happened in the midst of a line change.



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