Hockey is back, baby! (Image via Ian Lindsay)
It may just be the preseason, but it’s still something, you guys. Hockey is officially back in Vancouver, as the Canucks kick off their preseason schedule – which features 6 games, 4 of which will be in the friendly confines of Rogers Arena – when they play host to the San Jose Sharks tonight.
Read on past the jump for a preview of tonight’s action, including some news and notes on the line combinations we can expect.
Puck-drop: 7:00 PM PST
Television: Rogers Sportsnet Pacific
The expected makeshift lineup for tonight’s game is as follows:
(s/t to Ben Kuzma).
In net, the plan is to have Eddie Lack handle the workload for the first 2 periods, with Joe Cannata taking over in the 3rd.
Obviously some big names aren’t dressed tonight, but that doesn’t necessarily mean that this game is just a throw away.
In terms of regular season roster implications and what not, the guys to watch tonight, in particular, are Nick Jensen, Bo Horvat, Frank Corrado, Yannick Weber, and Eddie Lack. With the openings in the lineup being what they are – 2nd line LW, 3C, 3rd pairing on defense, and backup goalie – those guys will have the most eyes looking their way, as they’ll have a real shot to distinguish themselves from the competition over the next two weeks.
We saw Shinkaruk skate with Burrows and Kesler in the team’s scrimmages over the weekend, and that continues tonight. Not too shabby a gig for the 18 year old hot shot scorer’s first taste of NHL action. On the other hand, fellow ’13 1st rounder Bo Horvat draws less favourable linemates, but I’m not really taking anything away from that.
Meanwhile, John Tortorella will apparently be taking the game in from "above", as he wants to use this time to evaluate the young players. That means that assistant coaches Glen Gulutzan and Mike Sullivan will be in charge behind the bench.
I expect we’ll see the others, most notably the Sedins, for the first time this preseason on Wednesday night when the Canucks host the Oilers.
.. just kidding.
- A look at the lineup the Sharks will be sending out there tonight
- Our friends over at Fear the Fin re-introduce their fans to the Canucks
- Ben Kuzma on Eddie Lack (including a pun about hips)
- Botchford on the 3rd line centre situation
- John Tortorella vs. Cell Phones: an eternal struggle
- Tony Gallagher keeps his impressive streak of #HockeyPorn titles going