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GAME DAY PREVIEW- GAME FORTY-FOUR: Canucks @ Calgary- Jan 29, 2022

Coming off one of their biggest wins of the year, the Canucks backtrack to Calgary for their first meeting of the season.

Vancouver Canucks v Calgary Flames Photo by Gerry Thomas/NHLI via Getty Images

VANCOUVER CANUCKS (18-19-5) vs WINNIPEG JETS (17-15-7)

CANADA LIFE CENTRE, WINNIPEG, MB

7:00PM PST

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

OPPOSING BLOG: MATCHSTICKS AND GASOLINE

In any normal season, we likely would have been sick of playing the Calgary Flames by the time the end of January rolls around, but this is the 32 team NHL and now the Canucks will face off against the Flames four times over the next couple months. And given the current standings, these are massive games for both teams, but especially for the Canucks.

After putting together a fantastic performance against Winnipeg, led by JT Miller and Spencer Martin, the Canucks will have both Thatcher Demko and Jaroslav Halak, as well as Bo Horvat back in the lineup after coming out of COVID protocol. Miller’s four point night (3g 1a) was great to see, as Spencer Martin, who had played so well in his two previous outings but still had yet to seal the deal on his first NHL win, finally got the goal support he needed.

And while the Jets aren’t a terrible team, they’re not the Calgary Flames. And for a while, it looked like those Flames were going to be a serious threat in the Western Conference, but have since cooled off, and now find themselves having to fend off the San Jose Sharks, Dallas Stars, Edmonton Oilers as well as the Canucks for that final wild card slot in the West.

With a closer to normal lineup, there’s a chance the Canucks can get on a roll just in time for the All Star Break and of course they will...

LINEUPS

Canucks projected lineup

Vasily PodkolzinJ.T. MillerBrock Boeser

Elias PetterssonBo HorvatConor Garland

Tyler MotteJuho LammikkoMatthew Highmore

Nils HoglanderJason DickinsonAlex Chiasson

Quinn HughesLuke Schenn

Oliver Ekman-LarssonTyler Myers

Brad HuntNoah Juulsen

Thatcher Demko

Jaroslav Halak

Scratched: Ashton Sautner, Justin Dowling, Justin Bailey, Spencer Martin

Injured: Kyle Burroughs (lower body), Guillaume Brisebois (undisclosed), Travis Hamonic (lower body), Brady Keeper (leg), Brandon Sutter (illness), Tucker Poolman (illness)

COVID-19 protocol: Tanner Pearson

Flames projected lineup

Johnny GaudreauElias LindholmMatthew Tkachuk

Andrew MangiapaneMikael BacklundBlake Coleman

Milan LucicSean MonahanDillon Dube

Trevor LewisAdam RuzickaBrett Ritchie

Noah HanifinRasmus Andersson

Oliver KylingtonChristopher Tanev

Nikita ZadorovErik Gudbranson

Jacob Markstrom

Dan Vladar

Scratched: Michael Stone, Brad Richardson

Injured: Tyler Pitlick (lower body)

The Flames are very healthy and have no one in protocol for the time being. The Canucks are now down to just Tanner Pearson in protocol, but have a number of injured players, the latest being Tucker Poolman, who missed the final two periods of the game Thursday after coming down with what appears to be a non-COVID related illness. Noah Juulsen is getting the call from Abbotsford and could be in the lineup tonight,

GAME DAY CHATTER

GAME DAY BATTLE HYMN

Sweden’s WOLF have a new album coming out in April, but we’re gonna go back and check out their sweet cover of the BLUE OYSTER CULT classic ‘Don’t Fear The Reaper’ today. Crank this one, and I hope you’ve had a great Hockey Day In Canada. Go Canucks Go!