Game #39 Preview: Coyotes @ Canucks

Last time out, Alex Edler laid the boom on Mike Smith. Will the Coyotes be seeking retribution?

With the seemingly rushed nature of this shortened season, it feels as if a significant amount of time has passed since these two teams last met; when in reality, that game in Glendale was less than 3 weeks ago. As you’ll recall that game featured an impromptu Alex Edler-Mike Smith powwow behind the net (eventually leading to a 2 game suspension), and a makeshift lineup for Vancouver due to a myriad of injuries. Heck, the only two goals for the Canucks in that game came from Chris Tanev and Jordan Schroeder. I’d be willing to be that doesn’t happen again, and since I’m a nice guy, I’ll even give you some cushy odds. 

Monday night’s meeting at Rogers Arena will mark the 3rd and final game of the season series between the two, with the visiting team taking each of the first two meetings. The Canucks will be looking to buck that trend; a task which will surely be aided by the fact that they will be, for the most part, legitimately icing 12 NHL forwards and 6 NHL defensemen (though Tom Sestito would like to have a word about that, I’m sure).  

More on the Game Right Past the Jump.

Broadcast Info:

Puck Drop: 7:00 PM PST

Television: TSN

Radio: The Team 1040


Having watched far too many games where players were asked to do things that made them look like fish out of water, the last time we saw the Canucks play provided a rather refreshing change. With the acquisition of Derek Roy, and the duo of Mason Raymond and Dale Weise returning from injury, things are beginning to shape up. It sounds like even more reinforcements are on the way as Ryan Kesler took line rushes for the 1st time during today’s game day skate, and will be back down the middle with Raymond and Kassian on his wings.

Obviously Kesler’s presence will provide a huge boost for the Canucks in nearly all facets of the game, and it will allow Max Lapierre to move back down to his natural spot on the 4th line. Also, in case any friends or family of Keith Ballard’s are reading this, he is expected to make his return, as well.

For what it’s worth, Chris Tanev was absent from the skate and is listed as day-to-day with an injury suffered against the Flames. So the third pairing for the Canucks tonight will be Andrew Alberts and Keith Ballard.

I’d suggest the possibility that the Coyotes would potentially seek some sort of pre-meditated retribution, by either taking a run at Edler or Schneider, but they’ve got bigger fish to fry at the moment. They’ve won 3 in a row which has vaulted them into 9th place, and a win on Monday night would bring them to within 1 point of Detroit. They need to focus on winning, and what not. Then again, the fact that we’re talking about a team which has Shane Doan as its leader leaves the door open for all types of shenanigans.

The Canucks need to keep winning as well, though. An idle Minnesota Wild team is only 2 points behind them, and with just 10 games left in the season, there’s no time left for any hiccups. Especially with how tight the standings are from 3rd place to 7th. And hey, if they take care of business against the ‘Yotes, they get to snack on the Flames and Avalanche in their next two contests.

Finally, there’s one thing I’m particularly looking forward to, and one thing that I couldn’t care less for heading into this game. The positive is the fact that this game will be shown on TSN, which I always view as a treat. The negative? Having to sift through all of the #Doaner tweets during the course of the game. You win some, and you lose some.

Numbers Game:

  Coyotes Canucks
Team Record 17-15-6 21-11-6
Goal Differential +1 +8
PP % 15.2% (23rd) 13.6% (26th)
PK % 82.9% (10th) 82.4% (13th)
FO % 52.7% (3rd) 47.0% (28th)
Corsi % 50.7% (13th) 52.5% (6th)
Fenwick Close % 50.4% (14th) 53.5% (6th)
Fenwick Tied % 50.0% (15th) 55.2% (3rd)
Team PDO 100.2 (14th) 101.3 (8th)

Game Day Links: