By Andrew Chernoff
October 18, 2016
Game Time: 7:00 PM PST
Location: Rogers Arena
TV: Sportsnet Vancouver
Radio: TSN 1040
Vancouver (2-0-0=4 pts) play their 3rd game of four consecutive home games to start the season, taking on the St. Louis Blues (3-0-0=6 pts) at Rogers Arena tonight.
The Vancouver Canucks look for a 3-0 start for the second time in the last three seasons.
Vancouver made Canucks history on the weekend by winning consecutive home games to open a season, defeating division rival Calgary Flames 2-1 in a shootout; and Eastern Conference opponent Carolina Hurricanes 4-3 in overtime.
Vancouver overcame deficits on the weekend to start the season undefeated: they scored four unanswered goals after falling behind 3-0 against the Hurricanes; and scored late in the final period to tie Calgary, and won the game on Brandon Sutter’s shootout goal.
Last season Vancouver won only three of 34 games in which they trailed after two periods.
Jacob Markstrom will get his second game start of the season, after picking up a victory against Carolina on Saturday night, stopping 19 of 25 shots, for his first win of the season.
Ryan Miller was expected to be the backup for the Canucks, according to coach Willie Desjardins, when Miller came in for practice “tight”. After further evaluation it was decided he will not backup Markstrom tonight.
UBC Thunderbird goalie Matt Hewitt signed a game day contract with the Canucks to back up Jacob Markstrom tonight and will wear number 31.
St. Louis enters the game having won three in a row to start the season, the fourth time in its history it’s done so (1969-70, 1993-94, 2013-14).
In their last game, the Blues defeated the New York Rangers 3-2 at Scottrade Center on Saturday. St. Louis goalie Carter Hutton made 33 saves, 15 in the final period to extend the Blues winning streak. Paul Stastny and Vladimir Tarasenko each had a goal and assist for St. Louis; Alex Pietrangelo also scored.
The game is the first of a three game road trip in Western Canada for the Blues.
Paul Stastny and Vladimir Tarasenko have combined for five goals and six assists while Alexander Steen has one goal and three assists.
What’s at stake:
Vancouver would like to keep winning, and build on their winning streak. Canucks made it back-to-back victories on home ice, on the weekend, to open up their season. The wins were not pretty, and rather suspenseful.
Canucks man advantage continuing to be silent. The power play is so silent to start the season, it’s deafening.
Vancouver power play is 0 for 6. The Blues have killed 10 straight penalties dating back to their first game of the season.
If the Canucks power play is going to be an advantage, like it was designed for, then enough of the silence…… score dammit!!!!!….or, decline it, and continue playing at even strength.
Vancouver could go in the opposite direction like Edmonton did after winning both games against Calgary to begin their season. The lesson here, is the Canucks better not be complacent and rest on their laurels from the weekend, and underestimate what St. Louis is bringing tonight, or the Canucks could be in for a good thumping from the undefeated “Blue Flame”.
Vancouver needs to rise to the level of, being better than, St.Louis; scoring and dominating in all three periods; and staying away from overtime and a shootout to put it “all together”, and win their first game in regulation.
St. Louis: 3-0-0 (Road: 1-0-0)
Vancouver: 2-0-0 (Home: 2-0-0)
Team SF SA PP PK PIM
StL 82 75 4-13 10-11 26
Van 62 47 0-6 3-4 10
Team CF CA SCF SCA HITS
StL 93 111 36 45 62
Van 92 62 37 22 27
Note: 5v5 stats in parenthesis
for CF & CA
Canucks At A Glance:
- H. Sedin leads the team in career pts vs STL with 9-31-40 in 56 GP. D. Sedin is right behind him with 11-28-39 in 55 GP.
- The Canucks have won six straight games when allowing three or less goals, going back to last season.
- The Canucks are 2-7 in their last 9 games playing on 1 days rest and 4-0 in their last 4 home games, going back to last season.
- Vancouver is 6-4-0 overall against the Blues since 2013.
- Canucks are 3-2-0 at home against St. Louis since 2013; the Blues winning the last two.
- Home Sweet Home:
- Canucks are 2-0-0 on their home stand.
- They are averaging: 2.5 goals per game; 2.0 goals against (4th best in the NHL overall)
- Power play is 0.0 percent (0 for 6), 27th best in the NHL. Penalty kill is 75 percent (3 for 4), 16th best in the NHL
- Face-off winning percentage is 49.6 percent, 16th best in the NHL
- Daniel Sedin leads Canucks with 8 shots; Brandon Sutter, Jannik Hansen and Erik Gudbranson, have 6 shots each.
- Alex Edler has 9 blocked shots; Derek Dorsett, 7 hits.
- Nine Canuck forwards have at least one point after two games this season.
- Forwards searching for their first points are: Alex Burrows, Jake Virtanen and Sven Baertschi.
Potential Canucks Lineup:
They Said It….