Henrik Sedin celebrated a penalty shot goal the last time these two teams played.
Image uncredited via boston.com.
The Canucks are coming off of two really underwhelming efforts against a pair of Western Conference cellar dwellers in the Calgary Flames and the Colorado Avalanche. Whether motivation is an issue or there’s something else at play, it would behoove the Canucks to figure it out in short order. You don’t want to struggle down the stretch and back into the postseason when the team’s potential first round opponents include the Blues, Sharks and Kings – a veritable murderers row…
This week the Canucks will play four games in six nights, against three pretty good teams and also the Predators, who they play Monday evening. Let’s hope they have their games faces on…
Read past the jump.
Puck Drop: 5PM PST
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Television: Sportsnet Pacific
Life after Ryan Suter has proven difficult for the Nashville Predators, who have overcome an awful lot of marquee departures over the past decade. This season has been a different story as the Predators are lottery bound, and even made a clear rebuilding move at the deadline when they shipped Martin Erat to the Capitals in exchange for talented youngster Filip Forsberg. Forsberg made his NHL debut just last night and will presumably play this evening as well, so that’s pretty neat.
The Predators are not a good club and will be playing their second of back-to-back games on Monday. This is a vulnerable, banged up opponent and the Canucks should control proceedings with ease. The Predators still have Pekka Rinne, of course, and he’ll start tonight so it’s not like victory is assured, but it would be pretty unacceptable if the team were out-chanced in the manner they were on Saturday against Colorado…
The Canucks will be unveiling Ryan Kesler on Derek Roy’s wing this evening, and I’ll be curious to see how that works out. Jannik Hansen skates with the twins for a second straight game while Vancouver will roll out a third-line of Zack Kassian, Mason Raymond and Andrew Ebbett which, sounds not that good actually. Roberto Luongo will get the start, and I’d expect the defence-pairings to be unchanged from Saturday.
Canucks and Predators games are kind of an unpredictable beast. Sometimes it’s a 1-0 finish or a 2-1 finish with the Predators scoring from below the red-line on Luongo. Other times it’s a totally crazy 6-5 or 7-4 game with penalty-shots, net-planking, two goalie changes and a whole variety of odd occurences. Bet the under at your own risk!