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GAME DAY PREVIEW- GAME FORTY-EIGHT: Canucks vs Islanders- Feb 9, 2022

The Canucks look to keep things rolling as they welcome the last pre-COVID visitor to Rogers Arena: The New York Islanders.

New York Islanders v Vancouver Canucks

VANCOUVER CANUCKS (21-20-6) vs NEW YORK ISLANDERS (16-17-6)

ROGERS ARENA, VANCOUVER, BC

7:30PM PST

TV: SPORTSNET PACIFIC. RADIO: SPORTSNET 650

OPPOSING BLOG: LIGHTHOUSE HOCKEY

March 10, 2020. The Canucks defeat the New York Islanders 5-4 in a shootout on home ice, and then everything changed. The NHL put the season on hold as COVID began spreading across North America, and for a while, hockey was the least of our concerns. While things aren’t anywhere what we should consider ‘normal’ just yet, it does feel a little cathartic to see the Islanders in the building again.

The Islanders have found themselves in a somewhat familiar situation: A very rough start, and despite showing signs of life, unsure if they can make up enough lost ground to make the post-season. Granted, the Isles struggles were partly related to spending a good chunk of their season on the road, awaiting the completion of their new arena, but many expected this team to be better than it has.

The Canucks put on the kind of offensive display that’s been few and far between this season, as they put up five on the Arizona Coyotes. Scoring twice on the power play, and getting five points from the back end was something we’re just not used to this season, and would like to please see more of this, thank you very much.

Getting goals from all of their big 5 certainly gives them a confidence boost as they head into the downhill stretch on this season, and these guys getting hot right now is vital if they hope to catch the teams ahead of them in that race for a playoff spot in the West.

LINEUPS

Courtesy of nhl.com, tonight’s disasterpiece should look like this:

Islanders projected lineup

Anders LeeMathew BarzalJosh Bailey

Anthony BeauvillierBrock NelsonKieffer Bellows

Zach PariseJean-Gabriel PageauOliver Wahlstrom

Matt MartinCasey CizikasCal Clutterbuck

Adam PelechScott Mayfield

Zdeno CharaNoah Dobson

Andy GreeneRyan Pulock

Ilya Sorokin

Semyon Varlamov

Scratched: Ross Johnston, Sebastian Aho, Kyle Palmieri

Injured: None

Canucks projected lineup

Tanner PearsonJ.T. MillerBrock Boeser

Jason DickinsonBo HorvatConor Garland

Vasily PodkolzinElias PetterssonNils Hoglander

Tyler MotteJuho LammikkoAlex Chiasson

Oliver Ekman-LarssonTyler Myers

Kyle BurroughsLuke Schenn

Brad HuntNoah Juulsen

Jaroslav Halak

Thatcher Demko

Scratched: Ashton Sautner, Justin Dowling

Injured: Tucker Poolman (headaches), Travis Hamonic (lower body), Brady Keeper (leg), Brandon Sutter (illness)

COVID-19 protocol: Quinn Hughes, Matthew Highmore

Looks like no changes apart from Jaroslav Halak getting the start after Thatcher Demko got the win against the Coyotes last night. He’ll go up against Ilya Sorokin for the Islanders. I was surprised to see Cal Clutterbuck is still in the NHL. Neat.

GAME DAY CHATTER

GAME DAY BATTLE HYMN

Old school thrash from HALLOWS EVE today. I was looking for something else when I stumbled across this one. I remember getting chewed out by a bus driver in Kamloops back in the day because I was apparently listening to this too loud on my walkman. Anyway, it’s a great track and a hell of a pump up song.

Enjoy the (really late) game. Go Canucks Go!