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GAME DAY PREVIEW: Canucks @ Blues

Tuesday never happened if they can make tonight's game a gem.

I imagine this is how Sweden flexes their muscle at the UN too.
I imagine this is how Sweden flexes their muscle at the UN too.
Ben Nelms
Time Thursday, 5:00 PST
TV Sportsnet Pacific (I assume)
Season Series 0-0
Last Meeting
1-0 Canucks Feb 26
The Enemy St. Louis Game Time Scoring Leaders D. Sedin: 5-1-7
J. Schwartz: 4-3-7
6 Points 5
8th Conference Position 9th
Lost 2
Streak Lost 1
2.50 (11)
Goals For Per 60 (GF60)
1.56 (27)
3.34 (26)
Goals Against Per 60 (GA60)
1.04 (3)
17.4 (18) Power Play % 30 (3)
86.4 (10) Penalty Kill % 80 (17)
45.7 (29) Faceoff Win % 50.3 (14)
11.4 (15) PIM / GP 13.4 (22)
54.8 (6) Corsi For % 57.2 (3)
95.3 (27) PDO 100.4 (15)

Fun fact: the no good very bad John Tortorella-led Canucks last year beat the Blues all three times they played. Extract from that what you will.

The Desjardins-led Canucks have plenty of work to do, starting with the injured blueline. Hamhuis, like a rat in his big cage, is playing a few strides behind where he's expected to be, and being paired with Weber isn't ideal, but that's the defensive reality without Stanton. Sbisa and Bieksa has all the potential of a steady duo with the slight downside of a ticking time bomb, leaving Edler (who will be playing in his 500th game) and Tanev to try their very best not to crash into their own netminder.

Speaking of which Ryan Miller should get the nod against the team that banked the farm on him in the spring and quickly kicked him to curb after their first round exit. He's not terribly missed, that's for sure.

Up front the Bonino line was eaten alive in Dallas so they'll be looking for a better effort. The big secret on Vrbata being an excellent third Sedin won't last much longer, so if the Bonino line implodes the goals needs to come from somewhere. Amidst the mess from Tuesday was the fact the fourth line got involved with scoring (the Hansen tally assisted by Vey and Dorsett) so that may be the start of some iota of offensive contributions from the pluggers.

As for the Blues, the loss of Stastny means Steve Ott moves to their top line where there's already some lingering concern about Oshie's lack of production (note: it's nice to see media for other teams take a dump on their star players after just a few games). In their last game - a 3-0 loss to Anaheim - the Blues first line was a mess leaving it to the second and third lines to carry the play. The flu has been battering some of their wingers - notably Lehtera but more importantly Steen who is questionable to play tonight - so, at the very least, everyone wash your hands damn it.

Hitchcock is juggling their blueline too, pairing Pietrangelo and Bouwmeester (ROTFL) as the top pairing to give the Sedins hell, followed by Ian Cole with Kevin Shattenkirk and Barret Jackman alongside Jordan Leopold to round out the defense. Jack Allen should get the nod in net with Elliott resting for their tilt with Chicago on Saturday.

Vancouver may have a bit of luck on their side by catching a flu-ridden St. Louis team without Stastny, but it's going to take one hell of a consistent effort to walk out with the points.

Blues Projected Lines
Ott / Backes / Oshie
Steen / Berglund / Lindstrom
Schwartz / Porter / Tarasenko
Pasjarvi / Lapierre / Reaves

Bouwmeester / Pietrangelo
Cole / Shattenkirk
Jackman / Leopold

Elliott / Allen

Canucks Projected Lines
D. Sedin / H. Sedin / Vrbata
Higgins / Bonino / Burrows
Matthias / Richardson / Kassian
Dorsett / Vey / Hansen

Edler / Tanev
Sbisa / Bieksa
Hamhuis / Weber

Miller / Lack

Pregame song to confuse your neighbors and loved ones

I've been running to Nordic metal - also known as viking metal, also known as some gentlemen in a forest and perhaps a fiddle of two - for sometime now, but I've never actually stopped to watch a video. I was not disappointed.

Lock of the week game

Daniel Sedin takes a hooking call. I die a little inside. Again.

Snack of the game

It's real and it's spectacular.

Impromptu Drinking Games Rules

1 drink - Vrbata scores a PPG
1 drink - Lapierre is shown on screen and you inadvertently snicker
2 drinks - Tanev crashes into Miller
2 Drinks - Desjardins shows an emotion
3 Drinks - Tanev crashes into the St. Louis Arch
3 Drinks - Miller gets a shut out, moonwalks off the ice

Something you could do besides watch this hockey game

In the spirit of the Halloween season and because it's awesome, treat yourself to The Lost Boys and remember a time when horror movies didn't need to be CGI'ed until your eyeballs spit blood.

Parting thoughts from Sterling Archer

"Something, something, danger zone! I know. I’m not even trying anymore."