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GAME DAY PREVIEW: Canucks vs Vegas

Okay, I think I am ready to write this. Oh, god... no I’m not!

Vancouver Canucks v Arizona Coyotes Photo by Christian Petersen/Getty Images

Vancouver Canucks vs Vegas Golden Knights

Rogers Arena, Vancouver, BC

When: 7:00 PM PST

Where to watch: SNP, ATTSN-RM

Where to listen: Sportsnet650

Opposition Blog: Knights On Ice

And then the world as we know it, changed. We knew it could happen, but we hoped that it wasn’t quite time. After 17 seasons, Daniel and Henrik, the face(s) of the Canucks are saying goodbye. It’s very sudden, and I think the immediacy of it is intensifying the emotions we’re all feeling about this. Yes, we’re left with a treasure trove of amazing plays. We’re also left with a legacy of sportsmanship, leadership and community service that has set a high bar for Canucks present and future to live up to. And while I am sure we’re all thankful for being able to enjoy them for nearly 2 decades, it doesn’t make it hurt any less that the end is mere hours away.

Alright, let’s try and keep it together. Three games left, the only one against a playoff-bound team is tonight with Vegas rolling into town. It’s hard to accurately pin down just how to feel about this team. Sure, it’s a great story. And the fact that some guys who weren’t getting a fair shake because of numbers on their former teams are a big part of this is pretty neat. But I think the optics look terrible overall, because the amount of help given to this team to help them succeed when all who came before them had to struggle taints any success they have. It’s not on them, though. This is all Gary’s doing. It’s like they’re a vanity project for him.

Anyway, they come into the game tonight with the 1st star of the week William Karlsson, who is just a couple days removed from scoring this goal:

Ridiculous.

Not as ridiculous as the possibility of Luca Sbisa ending up with his name on the Stanley Cup, but still pretty ridiculous.

I would update the Tankwatch 2018 standings, but it just feels like rubbing salt into open wounds right now. They cannot finish last, and honestly given the schedule of those below them, I can’t see them dropping any further, save for Arizona beating them on Thursday (and I now believe the Canucks will win out the rest of their games this season, which might be the most ridiculous thing of all, yet so in keeping with the history of this squad).

The only thing to really watch will be just how much time Travis Green gives Hank and Danny. I would imagine there’s an increase in ice time if for no other reason than to give the fans what they’re coming to see. A last chance at witnessing some Wizardous Sedinery.

From theprovince.com here’s your projected lineups for tonight.

CANUCKS

POSSIBLE LINES

Nikolay Goldobin — Bo Horvat — Jussi Jokinen

Daniel Sedin — Henrik Sedin — Sam Gagner

Darren Archibald — Brandon Sutter — Tyler Motte

Brandon Leipsic — Adam Gaudette — Jake Virtanen

DEFENCE PAIRINGS

Alex Edler — Troy Stecher

Michael Del Zotto — Derrick Pouliot

Ashton Sautner — Alex Biega

STARTING GOALIE

Expected: Jacob Markstrom

SICK BAY

Reid Boucher (broken hand)

Chris Tanev (knee sprain)

Brock Boeser (back)

Sven Baertschi (shoulder)

Loui Eriksson (rib)

Erik Gudbranson (shoulder surgery)

Markus Granlund (ankle surgery)

Derek Dorsett (neck surgery, retired)

GOLDEN KNIGHTS

POSSIBLE LINES

Nathan Marschessault — William Karlsson — Alex Tuch

Tomas Tatar — Erik Haula — James Neal

Oscar Lindberg — Cody Eakin — Ryan Reaves

Tomas Nosek — Pierre-Edouard Bellemare — Ryan Carpenter

DEFENCE PAIRINGS

Brayden McNabb — Nate Schmidt

Deryk Engelland — Shea Theodore

Colin Miller — Jon Merrill

STARTING GOALIE

Expected: Marc-Andre Fleury

SICK BAY

Clayton Stoner (abdomen)

David Clarkson (back)

Mikhail Grabovski (concussion)

Will Carrier (undisclosed)

Luca Sbisa (undisclosed)

Reilly Smith (upper body)

David Perron (undisclosed)

GAME DAY BATTLE HYMN

Swedish metal to celebrate the Swedish Kings? Absolutely. From their stunning ‘Blackwater Park’ album, Opeth’s ‘Bleak’ sums things up today.