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GAME DAY PREVIEW- GAME THIRTY-FOUR: Canucks @ Seattle- Jan 1, 2022

The streak is over, but the Canucks are still clawing their way out of the hole they dug for themselves. Time to ring in the new year in the Emerald City with a visit to the Kraken.

Vancouver Canucks v Seattle Kraken Photo by Bruce Bennett/Getty Images

VANCOUVER CANUCKS (15-15-3) vs SEATTLE KRAKEN (10-18-4)

CLIMATE PLEDGE ARENA, SEATTLE, WA

7:00PM PST

TV: CBC, CITY, SPORTSNET, ROOT NW. RADIO: SPORTSNET 650

OPPOSING BLOG: DAVY JONES’ LOCKER ROOM

While the return from the extended Christmas break wasn’t perfect, the Canucks still gained another valuable inter-divisional point as they attempt to do the unthinkable and make the playoffs on a 1% likelihood of success. And while they now have 6 games needing to be rescheduled thanks to yesterday’s announcement that Wednesday’s visit from the New York Islanders has been postponed, they’ll have a week off to rest, heal and prepare for another Eastern road swing following next Saturday’s home game against the Ottawa Senators.

This is likely the make or break month for the Canucks’ playoff hopes. After these next two games, they have just two more games against current non-playoff teams of the eleven remaining contests on their schedule for January. That’s why it’s absolutely vital to get these next two wins. They simply cannot afford to give away points while teams in the West start making up the games in hand they hold over the Canucks.

Tonight they roll back into Seattle for what should have been their third meeting of the season. The Kraken’s first visit to Rogers Arena is one of the games that will be rescheduled over the break in February or towards the end of the season. Seattle’s hopes of a Vegas-like inaugural season have sank to the bottom of Puget Sound, as they have shown to be nothing more than a typical expansion team, complete with all the growing pains that come with it. It’s for the best, so that one does not end up with a fan base as entitled and spoiled as the ones down in Sin City.

LINEUPS

Courtesy of nhl.com this is what we’ll see in terms of lineups this evening:

Canucks projected lineup

Tanner PearsonJ.T. MillerAlex Chiasson

Nils HoglanderBo HorvatJason Dickinson

Conor GarlandElias PetterssonVasily Podkolzin

Tyler MotteJuho LammikkoMatthew Highmore

Tyler MyersOliver Ekman-Larsson

Luke SchennQuinn Hughes

Kyle BurroughsTucker Poolman

Thatcher Demko

Jaroslav Halak

Scratched: Brad Hunt

Injured: Travis Hamonic, Brady Keeper, Brandon Sutter, Guillaume Brisebois

COVID-19 protocol: Phillip Di Giuseppe, Justin Dowling, Brock Boeser

Kraken projected lineup

Jared McCannMorgan GeekieJordan Eberle

Calle JarnkrokYanni GourdeColin Blackwell

Ryan DonatoAlex WennbergJoonas Donskoi

Marcus JohanssonRiley SheahanMax McCormick

Jamie OleksiakMark Giordano

Will BorgenAdam Larsson

Carson SoucyVince Dunn

Philipp Grubauer

Chris Driedger

Scratched: Haydn Fleury

Injured: Jaden Schwartz (upper body)

COVID-19 protocol: Mason Appleton, Jeremy Lauzon

GAME DAY CHATTER

Tonight is a milestone game for D Oliver Ekman-Larsson as he prepares for career game number 800.

And in case you missed it earlier, the Canucks put out a message today from Assistant Equipment Manager Brian Hamilton:

Well, because sometimes the internet and hockey fans can actually be amazing...

GAME DAY BATTLE HYMN

It continues to spread, and the only way we’re going to beat this damn virus is doing what works: Getting vaccinated, using masks and limiting our interactions to ensure we do what we can to control the spread.

Enjoy the game, and Happy 2022 from all of us here at NM!