Tocchet criticizes Canucks' play in 2nd straight loss: 'That's .500 hockey'
The Vancouver Canucks may be flying high during a stellar 12-5-1 start, but head coach Rick Tocchet wasn't about to give them a free pass after a second straight loss Saturday.
"Our changes were awful. Long shifts. That's .500 hockey," he told reporters following the Canucks' 4-3 defeat to the Seattle Kraken. "You can't win that way. It wasn't good enough. There's no excuses."
The Kraken's first goal of the game came off an uncontested bomb by Jamie Oleksiak after Seattle caught the Canucks in the midst of a shoddy line change.
"Changes lose you hockey games, they lose you playoff series," Tocchet emphasized. "You have to change properly. We didn't."
The contest was tied 2-2 heading into the third period, but Yanni Gourde and Matty Beniers scored just over two minutes apart to secure the win for the Kraken.
Canucks defenseman Ian Cole thought his team squandered a chance to get back into the win column.
"Regardless of how well I thought we played in the first and second, we should be mature enough to realize where we are and what the opportunity we have is and take advantage of it, and then we didn't," he said. "So that's a little disappointing for us. We want to be more aware and more mature than that."
Though it had been one month since the last time the Canucks lost back-to-back games, Cole wants to make sure Vancouver isn't forming any bad habits.
"Good teams don't go on losing skids, right? And, you know, good teams don't lose two games in a row," he said. "And we did that. We need to make sure that we stop this right away. We can't let this turn into three, four, five losses."
J.T. Miller offered a more relaxed take after conceding that the Canucks didn't perform up to their standards.
"I mean, it's all good," he said. “We know you're going to lose a couple in a row. Like, 82 games, even the guys at the top of the league lose games consecutively. It is what it is. But I think sometimes you can lose games in better fashion than others, and I thought tonight we had an opportunity to salvage something and we got outworked."
The Canucks' next chance at victory will come Monday against the floundering San Jose Sharks.
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