VANCOUVER CANUCKS (18-18-3) vs OTTAWA SENATORS (16-26-4)
ROGERS ARENA- VANCOUVER, BC
TV: SPORTSNET, CBC. RADIO: SPORTSNET 650
OPPOSING BLOG: SILVER SEVEN SENS
The Vancouver Canucks having a faint sniff at a playoff spot after missing almost a month due to a COVID-19 outbreak on the team was far more because the Montreal Canadiens have been the beneficiaries of an insane amount of Bettman points than any real chance for the Canucks to somehow battle their way into the postseason. Even if the Canucks were to limp across the line, it would be because the Habs are frauds, and not worthy of a playoff spot either.
So while the fan base was understandably pumped up after two emotional wins over the first place Toronto Maple Leafs earlier this week, Thursday night’s loss to the Senators was the ultimate slap back to reality. This is a team that is still nowhere near 100% healthy after the virus tore its way through the lineup, and the sheer volume of games they have to play over the next few weeks is simply going to grind them down.
And speaking of not 100%, Tyler Motte and Zack MacEwan both make their returns to the lineup tonight. And they’ll be joined by Alex Edler, who has served his two game suspension after the kneeing incident with Zach Hyman.
Courtesy of nhl.com, this would appear to be tonight’s rosters, give or take a player:
Senators projected lineup
Brady Tkachuk — Josh Norris — Drake Batherson
Tim Stutzle — Colin White — Evgenii Dadonov
Alex Formenton — Shane Pinto — Connor Brown
Ryan Dzingel — Chris Tierney — Vitaly Abramov
Thomas Chabot — Nikita Zaitsev
Scratched: Artem Anisimov, Michael Amadio, Jacob Bernard-Docker
Injured: Nick Paul (undisclosed), Austin Watson (hand)
Canucks projected lineup
Tanner Pearson — Bo Horvat — Brock Boeser
Nils Hoglander — J.T. Miller — Zack MacEwen
Tyler Motte — Brandon Sutter — Jayce Hawryluk
Matthew Highmore — Travis Boyd — Jake Virtanen
Alexander Edler — Nate Schmidt
Scratched: Jalen Chatfield, Madison Bowey, Jimmy Vesey
Injured: Antoine Roussel (lower body), Elias Pettersson (upper body), Jay Beagle (undisclosed), Justin Bailey (shoulder), Micheal Ferland (head)
Interesting to see MacEwan slotting in on the 2nd line. Would love to see him get a decent look here, and try and find some chemistry with Miller and Hoglander.
GAME DAY CHATTER
Coach Green talks lineup, Juolevi, MacEwen, Hamonic and Vesey in advance of tonight's rematch with Ottawa.#Canucks | @TheProvince pic.twitter.com/omD7xa4YXn— Vancouver #Canucks (@Canucks) April 24, 2021
"It's something to take seriously. I can tell you first hand that it's real and it can hit you pretty hard regardless of who you are." - Tyler Motte on his experience with COVID#Canucks | @TheProvince pic.twitter.com/i3kKi5eSTn— Vancouver #Canucks (@Canucks) April 24, 2021
GAME DAY BATTLE HYMN
From their recent live stream, here’s an awesome tribute to the late Riley Gale as Obituary and the surviving members of Power Trip do a rip-roarin’ version of ‘Swing Of The Axe’.
Enjoy the game, Go Canucks Go!