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GAME DAY PREVIEW- GAME FORTY-ONE: Canucks vs St Louis- Jan 23, 2022

Spencer Martin was a rockstar on Friday, and now it’s Michael DiPietro’s turn as the Canucks are running out of goaltender options.

St Louis Blues v Vancouver Canucks - Game Six Photo by Jeff Vinnick/Getty Images

VANCOUVER CANUCKS (18-18-4) vs ST LOUIS BLUES (24-11-5)

ROGERS ARENA, VANCOUVER, BC

7:00PM PST

TV: SPORTSNET PACIFIC. RADIO: SPORTSNET 650

OPPOSING BLOG: ST LOUIS GAME TIME

This just gets more ridiculous with each passing day.

You have to feel bad for Spencer Martin. Dude puts in a spectacular performance, holding the NHL’s highest scoring team to one goal in regulation before falling in Uncle Gary’s Super Fun Trick Shot Competition, and surely would have been the starter tonight, hoping to get that elusive first NHL win. Instead, Mikey DiPietro will get that chance, and while we haven’t heard full confirmation, the Canucks will have an Emergency Back Up goalie on the bench tonight as they host the St Louis Blues.

Somewhat lost in the madness is a milestone for Head Coach Bruce Boudreau. He’ll be coaching career game number 1000 tonight, making him just the 6th active coach in the NHL to hit that mark.

Tonight’s opponent is likely a little less fearsome than Florida, because while the St Louis Blues have an impressive record overall, they’re pretty average on the road, and short-handed or not, you have to admire the way the Canucks have tried to battle through this adversity. Between wanting to get that win for DiPietro and Boudreau, and the desire to keep this run of solid performances going, betting on the underdogs might not seem that crazy tonight.

Speaking of crazy, this is the first meeting between these teams since the Canucks stunned the hockey world and unseated the defending champion Blues in six games in the 2020 Quarter Finals. Weird, right? I bet they’ve forgotten all about that, though.

LINEUPS

Courtesy of nhl.com, here’s what you’ll probably see in tonight’s disasterpiece:

Blues projected lineup

Brayden SchennRyan O’ReillyDavid Perron

Brandon SaadRobert ThomasJordan Kyrou

Ivan BarbashevLogan BrownVladimir Tarasenko

Klim KostinTyler BozakOskar Sundqvist

Niko MikkolaColton Parayko

Torey KrugJustin Faulk

Marco ScandellaRobert Bortuzzo

Ville Husso

Jordan Binnington

Scratched: Jake Walman, Pavel Buchnevich

Injured: Scott Perunovich (undisclosed)

Canucks projected lineup

Nils HoglanderElias PetterssonBrock Boeser

Tanner PearsonJason DickinsonAlex Chiasson

Tyler MotteJuho LammikkoMatthew Highmore

Vasily PodkolzinSheldon DriesJustin Bailey

Quinn HughesTucker Poolman

Oliver Ekman-LarssonTyler Myers

Kyle BurroughsLuke Schenn

Michael DiPietro

Scratched: Justin Dowling, Brad Hunt

Injured: Guillaume Brisebois (undisclosed), Travis Harmonic (lower body), Brady Keeper (leg), Brandon Sutter (illness)

COVID-19 protocol: Spencer Martin, Thatcher Demko, J.T. Miller, Jaroslav Halak, Conor Garland, Bo Horvat

Such a shame we won’t get to see Elias Pettersson clown the Blues thin-skinned goaltender, but it looks like Binnington may be in the process of losing his starting job and that’s just so gosh-darn sad.

And in the latest chapter of ‘Why is it so easy to dislike the St Louis Blues?’:

Where you’re at? Like the over four thousand who died from COVID yesterday? Weird flex, but okay, I guess? Those Missouri brain worms are relentless, eh?

GAME DAY CHATTER

GAME DAY BATTLE HYMN

A little ANNIHILATOR for ya today. Going back to album #2 ‘Never Neverland’, the Canadian thrash legends absolutely bring it here, with probably my favorite track from that disc.

This could be a memorable one tonight, for all kinds of reasons. Either way, enjoy it! Go Canucks Go!