Six days ago, Zack Kassian was made a healthy scratch for the ninth time this season and it seemed a foregone conclusion he was not long for Vancouver, assuming Canucks GM Jim Benning could ferret out some semblance of a return in a trade.
Yada, yada, yada, Kassian scored his fourth goal in three games last night in Boston, helping the Canucks to a 2-1 victory over the Bruins.
Such is the random game of hockey.
“I came in when [Alex Burrows] got hurt and got a lucky bounce (Friday in New Jersey) and kind of just took off from there,” Kassian said, per the Vancouver Sun. “I just want to keep working and help this team any way I can.”
How much has luck turned in his favor?
Well, his last four goals have come on just seven shots, and his seven goals in February have come on just 13 shots. With Burrows out, he’s also found himself on a line with the Sedin twins. (Which, yes, may help explain some of his recent shooting success. Not all of it though.)
Prior to February, Kassian had just two goals on 33 shots and had spent most of his playing time with the likes of Brad Richardson and Shawn Matthias.
Now, to be sure, Kassian’s future with the Canucks remains far from certain. Coach Willie Desjardins still doesn’t trust the 24-year-old winger defensively, as evidenced last night by the two quick shifts Kassian received after scoring the winning goal at 6:47 of the third.
Benning could still pull the trigger on a trade prior to Monday. But this recent hot streak has certainly added another dimension to the story.
Last night’s goal, by the way, was Kassian’s only shot of the game.