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Gamethread & GAME DAY PREVIEW: Do It For The Kids- Canucks vs Chicago

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Coming off a big win over Colorado, the Canucks play host to the Blackhawks and it’s the annual Canucks For Kids Telethon!

Chicago Blackhawks v Vancouver Canucks

There are a few nights where you don’t want to miss the Canucks playing, no matter how good or bad things are going. One is when they play the Blackhawks (while the true rivalry may be dead, it’s always a fun time) and another is the Canucks For Kids Telethon. Sportsnet always does a bang-up job on this, and we’ve seen the good that Canuck Place does for kids and their families dealing with serious illness, as well as the other BC Children’s Charities it supports. We’re hoping you all give what you can tonight.

Now, onto the game at hand here. While you never want to see your team cough up a two goal lead, teams like the Avalanche are where they are right now because of their ability to overcome such odds. Credit to the Canucks for battling back to tie it in the 3rd (something we haven’t really seen them do at all this season) and then steal that 2nd point back in OT.

They got a big game out of Chris Tanev, who put up assists on 3 of the 4 Canuck goals, a much needed offensive boost from a team that struggles to get points from it’s rearguards. We can expect Eric Gudbranson to return to the lineup tonight, and I would guess that either Ben Hutton, Troy Stecher or more likely Alex Biega sits as they look to put a pretty dismal January behind them, winning just 4 of their 11 contests. They’re one point back of the Oilers, who have a tough task of their own tonight as they take on a Colorado team that will be without Nathan MacKinnon, who was injured in the game Tuesday after a collision with Alex Edler.

The Blackhawks have struggled at times this season, and losing Corey Crawford for a stretch to injury was a big part of that. They’re trying to incorporate some youth into their lineup, and seeing some of their more familiar names starting to trail off in the effectiveness category (or in the case of Brent Seabrook, fall completely off a cliff). It was probably never more evident than the last time these two teams played, a rather thorough 5-1 ass-kicking by the Canucks that brought back some pretty good memories of the glory days of this rivalry.

I don’t expect this game to go the same way, and with the Hawks 4 points out of a wild card spot and winners of 2 straight we should be prepared to see them come out firing on all cylinders. One player to watch for Chicago will be rookie Alex DeBrincat. He’s 2nd in rookie goal scoring with 17 and been a pretty effective part of their new first line with Jonathan Toews and Anthony Duclair.

GAME DAY BATTLE HYMN

Saw this one pop up in a Facebook thread recently, so let’s go back to the 80’s and a criminally underrated skate-thrash classic from Wasted Youth.