VANCOUVER – After the Vancouver Canucks defense broke the records for assists and points in a single season (which held franchise records long before he was born), Quinn Hughes decided to improve in other areas. and summer has begun. Now he wants to score more goals.
“He says it all the time,” coach Bruce Boudreau said Thursday. “He says: ‘I can do better, I can do better’.”
“It’s an innate desire, the type of thing you’re made for. Some people are happy just to be here. Some players want to be better than everyone else in the league. Usually you look at the stars.” When that’s who you have.
Coming up on his 23rd birthday, Hughes is already the best defenseman in Canucks history, able to dictate shifts and make passes with pace and agility, Boudreau said.
Hughes surpassed Doug Lidster’s 1987 record of 63 points by a Vancouver defenseman last season, the highest since before validating that position. Erases the 1977 record of 55 assists in a season.
He tallied 60 assists and 68 points in 76 games, and would have scored more points had he not entered a season focused primarily on improving defense.
During the 2021 Pandemic season, the Michigan defenseman nearly halved its goals per 60 minutes last year. half a point while adjusting for a 25-goal turnaround on his 5-5 scoring differential.
However, he only scored eight times and has only 19 goals in three seasons. That’s less than the NHL’s blue-line giants Cale Makar, Victor Hedman and Roman Josi each scored alone last season.
“They really tear up the pack, so I don’t know if I can stand there,” Hughes said Thursday in a preseason game about what to do to help the Canucks beat the Edmonton Oilers 5-4. Miles also said the morning after skating, “But I think I can definitely hit 13 or 14 goals.
“I hate running around with my head chopped off. Those guys are incredible players. But for me, with this team, when you’re playing a game like last night, you can’t win much.” I’m not sure what I can achieve (for goals), but I’m going to do my best, I feel better this year than I did last year, and I’ll keep going from there.”
In Wednesday’s win, the Canucks’ first and Hughes’ second preseason game, the defense burst through the Vancouver forward’s picket fence in the neutral zone and rushed over Hughes, leaving him a bit stranded. rice field. Hughes finished minus three as the Oilers scored two shorthanded goals.
But he also had a few assists on power plays, hitting the offensive zone with the puck on multiple occasions and making half a dozen shots. Hughes’ desire to be more dangerous offensively is why he suggested to Boudreau in the summer that he could try playing on the right flank.
“We had some chances to score,” Hughes said of Wednesday’s game. “Still, I think you can incorporate some of the things I’m talking about a little more evenly just by looking at my clips.
But from which side of the ice?
Since training camp began two weeks ago, Boudreau’s experimentation with Hughes on the right side of the elite pair has been a constant topic of conversation around the Canucks. But against the Oilers, with the team going 0-3-2 in the preseason, Boudreau moved Hughes back to his natural left side to reunite with Luke Shen.
Ekman Larson skated with Tucker Poolman instead, while Kyle Burroughs teamed with Tyler Myers. and has been out every day.
The Canucks will finish preseason against the Arizona Coyotes at Rogers Arena on Friday.
“He’s very good either way,” said Boudreau, sticking to the question of which side Hughes would play on. “He plays so much time that in the end he will play with everyone. In that case he can play on the right side without any problems and I’m happy with that.”
What if the situation arises? That means he will start the regular season on the left side in Edmonton next week.
“I don’t know,” said Hughes. “I’m going to play where they want. I told him from the start, ‘I’m happy to play either way.’ I thought Luke and I did really well last night. Me and him OEL, I think he had two great periods last weekend against Seattle. I said from the beginning that I would play wherever they wanted me to play. It also depended on how Poolsy (Poolman) and some others were feeling. I get along well with everyone. “
In fact, he’s generally great with everyone.
There’s always room for improvement in Canucks Hughes’ eyes
Source link There’s always room for improvement in Canucks Hughes’ eyes