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GAME DAY PREVIEW- GAME SEVENTY-SIX: Canucks vs Dallas- Apr 18, 2022

The latest edition of The Biggest Game Of The Year has the Dallas Stars in town to take on the Canucks. Operation: Run The Table is in effect.

Dallas Stars v Vancouver Canucks

VANCOUVER CANUCKS (377-28-10) vs DALLAS STARS (43-27-5)

ROGERS ARENA, VANCOUVER, BC

7:30PM PST

TV: SPORTSNET, SN ONE. RADIO: SPORTSNET 650

OPPOSING BLOG: DEFENDING BIG D

We’re still using the word ‘improbable’ to aptly describe this late season dash for a chance at playoff glory (or a humbling first round exit). It’s okay to do that. They were never supposed to get this close, and if it falls short, I’m okay with that. If they pull off this crazy-ass run that gets them in? I’m okay with that, too. The first option is fine, because it’s the by-product of the team putting together some meaningful hockey, when it had appeared they were on track for one of their worst campaigns in franchise history. And as for the second option? The chaos this would cause, especially through the ejection of a team that seemed to have their playoff spot sorted out, would be fantastic.

Dallas has been a frustration through all this, because it seems like they just can’t lose lately, and when they do, it’s in OT. The Canucks have done well against them this season though, and a win tonight will give them the season sweep. The target for Vancouver to catch isn’t so much the Stars anymore, but the Los Angeles Kings, who are 3rd in the Pacific, but just six points ahead of the Canucks, who are using one of their two games in hand on the Kings tonight.

This is a tough week for the Canucks, as they will play three games in four nights, and four in six, as after tomorrow’s visit from the Ottawa Senators it’s off to Minnesota for a tilt against the Wild on Thursday, then back to Calgary for a Saturday Night date with the division leading Flames. The situation remains the same as last week. They can maybe lose one game, and still make it, but they pretty much have to extend the current five game win streak they’re on into double digits to pull this off.

LINEUPS

Courtesy of nhl.com, this is what tonight’s disasterpiece should resemble:

Stars projected lineup

Jason RobertsonRoope HintzJoe Pavelski

Jamie BennTyler SeguinMarian Studenic

Michael RafflRadek FaksaDenis Gurianov

Joel KivirantaLuke GlendeningAlexander Radulov

Ryan SuterMiro Heiskanen

Esa LindellJohn Klingberg

Joel HanleyJani Hakanpaa

Jake Oettinger

Scott Wedgewood

Scratched: Jacob Peterson, Thomas Harley, Andrej Sekera, Fredrik Karlstrom

Injured: Braden Holtby (lower body), Vladislav Namestnikov (lower body)

Canucks projected lineup

Conor GarlandElias PetterssonBrock Boeser

Vasily PodkolzinJ.T. MillerAlex Chiasson

William LockwoodJuho LammikkoMatthew Highmore

Jason DickinsonBrad RichardsonSheldon Dries

Oliver Ekman-LarssonTyler Myers

Quinn HughesLuke Schenn

Brad HuntTravis Dermott

Thatcher Demko

Jaroslav Halak

Scratched: Kyle Burroughs, Nic Petan

Injured: Bo Horvat (lower body), Tanner Pearson (upper body), Tucker Poolman (upper body), Nils Hoglander (lower body)

As you can see, there’s a couple bits of good news there for a change, as Brock Boeser and Matthew Highmore will make their returns to the lineup tonight. With Bo Horvat out for the remainder of the regular season, Boeser’s return is a huge boost to the Canucks as they look to keep this streak going.

GAME DAY CHATTER

GAME DAY BATTLE HYMN

German thrash legends KREATOR have been going strong since the 80’s, as we can hear in this track from their most recent album ‘Hate Uber Alles’. Check out ‘Strongest Of The Strong’, to get you fired up for tonight!

Enjoy the game, everyone! Go Canucks Go! Slava Ukraini!