Canuck Brunch: Just What The Doctor Ordered- Oct 15

While the Canucks and their stumble out of the gate has been examined ad nauseum, whether you are on the Chicken Little side of the fence, or the ration, calm the hell down it's a week into the season side, one thing we can all agree on, there's nothing like a game against a rival to shake off a slump.  And when it come to the Edmonton Oilers, the Canucks have certainly done their fair share of cleansing over the last few years.  The Sedins especially have feasted on Edmonton, with Daniel scoring a jaw-dropping 12% of his goals against Edmonton.  These games, despite how truly horrid the Oilers have been for the last half-decade or so, are always entertaining, feisty affairs.  Expect more of the same tonight, as the Oilers try and use this game as a measuring stick, while the Canucks do their annual 'work the bugs out of the system while awaiting the return of injured core players' thing...

The final game of a 4 game roadtrip can often be a disappointing one, with the team looking ahead to arriving home and not focusing on the task at hand.  With the um, focus the team has shown in their first 4 games, suffice it to say they should be a much sharper looking team tonight, looking to finish their first road swing at .500 with a win tonight over the Oilers.  The Canucks will be shuffling up things a bit, according to the Province's Jason Botchford.  He tweets that the 1st line will be the same, but the 2nd will see Cody Hodgson centering Mikael Samuelsson and Chris Higgins while line 3 will be Manny Malhotra with Marco Sturm and Jannik Hansen.  Line 4 will be Maxim Lapierre with Dale Weise and Aaron Volpatti, to combat the Oilers douche squad who will no doubt be looking to start shit again tonight as they did in the last meeting between these teams in the preseason. 

Defensively there will be a bit of a change as well, as Alexander Edler and Keith Ballard will be the 2nd pairing, Sami Salo and Andrew Alberts the 3rd, Ballard getting the promotion no doubt as a sign of recognition for his much improved play so far this year.  While his game was less than stellar against Detroit to put it mildly, overall he has been more of the type of Dman the Canucks were hoping for when they signed him as a free agent last summer.

One thing I am looking forward to, and it's certainly been the most entertaining aspect of this 'rivalry' of late, is the ridiculous over-reaction of Oilers players anytime one of their kids takes a clean hit.  It's happened a number of times, and with the Canucks PP needing some extra time to gel, you can bet they will get that chance when someone like Theo Peckham or Ryan Jones loses it because they haven't taught that Bieber-lookin' kid, the buck-toothed one or the the hyphenated wonderboy how to keep their damn heads up. 

Roberto Luongo is in goal for the Canucks tonight, looking to notch his first W of the season after the shootout loss to Pittsburgh and the loss in Philadelphia.  Luongo's notorious slow starts always seem to come to a halt with one game that seems to awaken him, and perhaps this one, early on will do the trick.  I fully expect him to be lights out tonight, along with a much better team effort defensively.

And since it's a Hockey Night In Canada game, we know many of you will no doubt be syncing the TEAM1040 broadcast with CBC to drown out Mark Lee, tonight however his colour man is former Kamloops Blazer Darryl Reaugh.  I dig Razor as a colour man, and hopefully he can do a better job of balancing out the hideousness that is Lee than Kevin Weekes was able to do...

What's on the menu?

A busy schedule tonight, including all 7 Canadian teams in action.  The Flames head into Toronto tonight to take on the Leafs, The Canadiens host the Avalanche in Montreal, Ottawa heads to DC to take on the Capitals, and Phoenix is in Winnipeg in that awkward situation everyone's been waiting for, when the Old Jets play the new Jets.  Maybe Shane Doan will finally get that hat trick, huh?  Some other noteworthy games tonight include Mike Richards and the LA Kings taking on the Flyers, which will no doubt be a feel good match with lots of hugs and mutual respect, the Islanders and Rangers in another edition of the Battle of New York, and in the marquee de douchebag for the evening, it's the Bruins and Blackhawks battling for scumbag supremacy.  Just a shame both of them can't lose...

BAND OF THE DAY- MACHINE HEAD

The Bay Area Bashers are back with a kickass new album, ready to hit the road for a long world tour.  Check out the first release from 'Unto The Locust', and then the song that created the buzz from their first album...


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