Game #33 Preview: Blue Jackets @ Canucks

The Canucks look to get by Fedor Tyutin and the Columbus Blue Jackets on Tuesday night.

Thanks to a scheduling quirk resulting from the lockout, the Vancouver Canucks and Columbus Blue Jackets face each other on Tuesday night for the 3rd time in 19 days. The first two contests took place in Ohio and were, um, fairly painful to watch. The matchups featured a game that ended in a shootout, a game that was decided in overtime, and just 5 goals total in over 129 combined minutes of play.

The Canucks are coming back home off of a thoroughly successful roadtrip, and are winners of four in a row. But I’m sure the visiting Blue Jackets – who are 7-1-2 in their past 10, themselves – will try their best to stop both that streak, and the fans from having any fun.

For what it’s worth, the last time I made mention of how few goals I was expecting heading into a game, the Canucks beat the Nashville Predators by a score of 7-4. Just remember who to thank if this one goes that way.

Read Past the Jump for More on the Game.

Broadcast Info:

Puck Drop: 7 PM PST

Television: Rogers Sportsnet Pacific

Radio: The Team 1040


Alex Edler will be welcome back into the Canucks lineup, as he is back off of his two game vacation suspension. Obviously his contributions are vital to the team’s success, so I’m sure the Canucks will appreciate his influx of offense from the back-end. But personally, I appreciate this because it surely means that we can expect some more Burrows-Ebbett-Ballard on the third line, as we saw on Sunday in Colorado. Call me crazy, but I’m thoroughly enjoying the Keith Ballard Forward Experience. It’s very possible that its novelty will wear off soon enough, but for now, let’s relish the ride.

As I mentioned above, the Canucks have won 4 games in a row, which was considered impressive given the circumstances (i.e. the schedule, and their personnel). However, I’d personally like to see them submit a dominant performance here where they leave little doubt. On paper, this should be quite the mismatch in terms of possession (6th vs 29th). This also opens up a cushy stretch in the schedule for the Canucks – in their following 10 games, they face only 1 team that’s currently over .500, and don’t have a single back-to-back. It’s a great opportunity for them to distance themselves from the Minnesota Wild and take control of the Northwest Division.

Cory Schneider is back between the pipes for the 5th straight time, and why wouldn’t he be? He has now stopped 111 of the past 116 shots he has faced, which is good for a .957 save percentage. Yeah, I think that’ll get the job done.

Expect to see a ton of Fedor Tyutin and Jack Johnson in this one, as they’ll surely get the assignment of trying to slow the Sedins down. If you’ll recall, the last time these two teams played in Columbus, Tyutin really pushed the envelope in terms of seeing what he could do to Henrik Sedin without being whistled for an infraction. Apparently, the answer was "a lot".

Numbers Game:

  Blue Jackets Canucks
Record 13-13-6 17-9-6
Goal Differential -10 +2
PP % 13.9% (27th) 13.4% (29th)
PK % 85.2% (6th) 81.2% (16th)
FO % 50.8% (13th) 47.3% (28th)
Corsi % 47.0% (23rd) 52.8% (6th)
Fenwick Close % 44.4% (29th) 53.4% (6th)
Team PDO 100.5 (13th) 101.1 (8th)

Game Day Links: