Wednesday, November 12, 2008

Canucks & Avalanche Game Day

Tonight will be the first meeting of the season between the Vancouver Canucks and Colorado Avalanche. Both teams are coming off shut-out efforts in their last games and both teams are at opposite ends of the Northwest Division standings.

The Canucks (9-6-0) have won five of their last six outtings, which includes three straight shut-outs. Roberto Luongo has gone 201:08 minutes without allowing a goal against. He is 9:26 away from his career best 212:12 shut-out sequence, which was established last season.

Kevin Bieksa has the longest current point-scoring streak for Vancouver. In the Canucks last three victories, Bieksa has tallied one goal and three assists.

Jannik Hansen will return to the Canucks line-up tonight after missing the last four games with a groin injury. Coming out of the line-up will be Michel Ouellet, who in fact has been re-assigned to the Manitoba Moose. Ouellet had appeared in three games with the Canucks, collecting no points and a +1 rating.

The Canucks have been perfect against teams from the Northwest this season (4-0-0). In fact, every one of the Canucks victories this season has come against a Western Conference opponent.

The Avalanche (6-8-0) have been labelled as one of the streakiest teams in the NHL this year. And that's for good reason as they just snapped a five-game losing streak last Saturday with a 1-0 win at home against the Nashville Predators. Prior to that losing skid, the Avs had won five in a row.

Colordao will be without their captain for this game as Joe Sakic has stayed at home in Denver to get treatment on his sore back. Although they didn't skate in line combos during their morning practice, rookie forward T.J. Hensick very likely could take Sakic's spot on the line between Milan Hejduk and Wojtek Wolski.

Here are the expected line-ups for tonight's meeting:


D. Sedin - H. Sedin - Raymond
Burrows - Kesler - Hansen
Pyatt - Wellwood - Bernier
Hordichuk - Johnson - Brown

Mitchell - Bieksa
Ohlund - Salo
Edler - O'Brien



Wojtek Wolski - T.J. Hensick - Milan Hekduk
Ryan Smyth - Paul Stastny - Marek Svatos
Darcy Tucker - Ben Guite - Ian Laperriere
Cody McLeod - Tyler Arnason - David Jones

Scott Hannan - Adam Foote
John-Micheal Liles - Brett Clark
Ruslan Salei - Jordan Leopold

Peter Budaj
Andrew Raycroft

No comments: