"I go on ice, Vancouver Canucks jersey. I’m happy."

Baby nuckers celebrate their win last night against the University of Alberta Golden Bears. Pic from canucks.com

The quote above? From Sergei Shirokov after his first game wearing the Orca.

Sure, it's just prospects camp. Sure, it's just one game. And sure, it was against the University of Alberta Golden Bears of all teams. But Shirokov - the first Russian player fans can get remotely excited about since Artem Chubarov (no Fedor Fedorov doesn't count and you should be ashamed for thinking as much) is quickly going to become loved if he maintains this sort of play into next week's veteran camp:

There seems little doubt that Shirokov, one of only two Russian players to leave the KHL for entry-level NHL deals this summer, has the skills to play for the Canucks. There is a question about his size: 5-10 and 165 pounds.

He began to answer that question Wednesday when after getting run over by Alberta assistant captain Eric Hunter in the first period, Shirokov crushed the former Prince George Cougar a period later with the game’s biggest hit.

I encourage you to read the full article as it gives you a good idea of what kind of player he is and how badly it seems he wants to be a Canuck. Great stuff.

As for the game last night, the Canucks feel behind early but evened it up in the first on a goal from Kellan Tochkin (assisted by Bliznak and Shirokov). Kevin Connauton stood out for his strong game in addition to notching a pair of goals in less than a minute early in the second (Shirokov got the lone assist on the first while Walsky and Rai factored in on the second). Tochkin would add his second goal later in the game (assisted by Bliznak and Oberg) and the Canucks - behind netminders James Reid & Bobby Nadeau - hung on for the 4-3 victory. Shirokov, Tochkin and Connauton were named the three stars.

And if you missed the game because of the wonky feed we found, you're in luck: tonight, when the Canucks move on to Leduc, Alberta to face off against the Edmonton Oilers Prospects, canucks.com will be streaming the game live starting at  6 p.m. PT.

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