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GAME DAY PREVIEW- GAME TWENTY-SIX: Canucks vs Los Angeles- Dec 6, 2021

New coach, who dis?

NHL: DEC 28 Kings at Canucks Photo by Derek Cain/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images

VANCOUVER CANUCKS (8-15-2) vs LOS ANGELES KINGS (10-9-4)

ROGERS ARENA, VANCOUVER, BC

7:00PM PST

TV: SPORTSNET PACIFIC. RADIO: SPORTSNET 650

OPPOSING BLOG: JEWELS FROM THE CROWN

The smoke has cleared after last night’s surprising yet not surprising purge of the areas in the management suite and behind the bench, and tonight Bruce Boudreau and Scott Walker will make their coaching debuts with the Canucks. While the search for a new General Manager continues, the Canucks still have a lot of hockey left to play, their fate for this season at least all but settled.

With just a 1% chance of making the post-season, we need to take a moment and understand that a coaching and front office change isn’t necessarily going to translate into a better product on the ice with the players they have. It’s going to take time, and those in charge have an arduous task ahead of them. There’s been talk that this fan base lacks the patience for a rebuild, which is probably the dumbest thing anyone’s ever said about Canucks fans that doesn’t involve riot jokes. We waited eight years for the team to start a rebuild, so we’ll gladly sit and await them getting around to it once the new management team is in place.

And thankfully there’s not a huge lull in the schedule, so that the Canucks and new head coach Bruce Boudreau can leap headlong into the maelstrom, as they begin the task of coming up with ways to work with what they have, and get better performances out of everyone in a blue & green jersey.

Their first task is to take on a much improved Los Angeles Kings squad, fresh off a 5-1 ass-kicking of the Edmonton Oilers last night. That game included an absolutely gross hit from behind from Connor McDavid that saw him get five and a game misconduct, but there doesn’t seem to be any supplementary discipline coming for this, which is extremely wrong but so par for the course with the NHL and its DoPS.

The Kings have stumbled a bit from their hot start, and while they’ve only won three of their last ten, they’ve managed to get three loser points, and it’s keeping them in the playoff hunt at the moment. It’s also going to be the first meeting between these teams since Alex Edler left as a free agent this summer, so we can expect a nice video tribute at some point during the evening. And like the loyal Canuck he was, Edler spared us the embarrassment of giving up his 100th career goal, as he was able to notch that milestone against Jacob Markstrom and the Calgary Flames the other night.

LINEUPS

Kings projected lineup

Adrian KempeAnze KopitarDustin Brown

Alex IafalloPhillip DanaultViktor Arvidsson

Trevor MooreLias AnderssonRasmus Kupari

Carl GrundstromT.J. TynanArthur Kaliyev

Mikey AndersonDrew Doughty

Alexander EdlerMatt Roy

Tobias BjornfotSean Durzi

Cal Petersen

Jonathan Quick

Scratched: Olli Maatta, Jaret Anderson-Dolan

Injured: None

Suspended: Brendan Lemieux

COVID-19 protocol: Andreas Athanasiou, Blake Lizotte

Canucks projected lineup

Tanner PearsonBo HorvatNils Hoglander

Jason DickinsonJ.T. MillerBrock Boeser

Vasily PodkolzinElias PetterssonConor Garland

Tyler MotteJuho LammikkoAlex Chiasson

Quinn HughesTravis Hamonic

Oliver Ekman-LarssonTyler Myers

Luke SchennTucker Poolman

Thatcher Demko

Jaroslav Halak

Scratched: Brad Hunt, Kyle Burroughs, Justin Dowling

Injured: Matthew Highmore (upper body), Brandon Sutter (illness), Brady Keeper (leg)

So it looks like they’ll pull Burroughs and Dowling in favour of Hamonic and Lammikko. Neat. Jonathan Quick had the start last night in Edmonton so they’ll roll Cal Petersen against Thatcher Demko tonight.

GAME DAY CHATTER

GAME DAY BATTLE HYMN

Going back to the 80’s for this one since we’re playing the Kings tonight, and a look at the worlds of heavy metal and hockey colliding. Former Kings tough guy Ken Baumgartner recorded a two song EP for Metal Blade Records, enlisting the help of ARMORED SAINT/ANTHRAX vocalist John Bush, guitarist Rocky George (SUICIDAL TENDENCIES) and Joe DiBiase and Mark Zonder of FATES WARNING.

The two track EP had a couple of covers of some classics: AC/DC’s ‘Live Wire’ and MOTORHEAD’s ‘Bomber’. It’s not the worst thing to come out of that era, and definitely a fun one for your collection if you ever come across it.

Well gang, we made it through the dark times. The journey’s gonna be a long one yet, but having hope for the future feels pretty damn good. Go Canucks Go.