News and Notes: Bieksa Okay; Horvat to Debut; Ference Suspended

It was a fairly busy morning as far as Canucks news goes. The injury situations of Kevin Bieksa and Tom Sestito were updated, Jim Benning announced when Bo Horvat will make his NHL debut, and NHL Player Safety ruled on the Andrew Ference hit on Zack Kassian.

Read past the jump for the latest rumblings from around Canucks-land.

  • Kevin Bieksa appears to have dodged serious injury after taking a puck to the eye last night, and is listed as day-to-day:

  • While Bieksa hasn’t been fantastic so far this year, losing him would be a serious blow to an already thin defense core. Fortunately, Ryan Stanton is ready to return to game action. Frank Corrado, who has 1 goal on 12 shots and a -2 in 5 AHL games this year, is also an option to be recalled.
  • The injury to Tom Sestito is more significant as he’s out indefinitely with a lower body injury:

  • Sestito was seen on crutches after last night’s game.
  • Bo Horvat will draw into the lineup in Sestito’s place, though he will likely centre either the third or fourth line.

We expect that Horvat will be a good middle-6 centre in his prime, but he’s still just 19 years old. He’s very likely not close to that right now, and I have a tough time seeing him bring more to the table than Brad Richardson or Linden Vey in these next 9 games. Outside of guys that are the absolute cream-of-the-crop, it’s pretty rare that 19-year olds make an immediate impact in the NHL, especially in the faceoff dot and defensive end of the rink – the two areas we’re told that Horvat excels.

  • Finally, Andrew Ference has been suspended for 3 games for his check to the head of Zack Kassian:

  • You can read what we thought of the hit in our postgamer from Saturday night.
  • Mike Ribeiro was also assessed a checking to the head penalty last night for a hit on Shawn Matthias, however I would be surprised if he received a call from the NHL. Ribeiro didn’t charge at Matthias, didn’t leave his feet, and Matthias was uninjured on the play:

  • nucksandbolts

    Bieksa getting some of that karma Oilers fans talk about. He spared Hall’s life on Saturday and now gets good news about his eye.

    But, not sure if sparing Hall’s life is the best way to get one of the dumbest players in the league to finally skate with his head up?

  • nucksandbolts

    Ribeiro came in with his elbow up and got Matthias right in the head, those elbow pads are not foam rubber. I guess DPS figure the case load is to high. No one is getting the message, its a joke. Ok I’ll get off the apple box but two or three or four game suspensions as a deterrent are laughable.

    Keep your head up Bo.

  • nucksandbolts

    Really? I can’t believe there’s no suspension on that, it’s worse than Ference’s and less defensible thank Burrows’s. Ribeiro glides in on Matthias, who basically doesn’t move, and deliberately elbows him in the head.

    It’s not a reaction play, he has tons of time to figure out what he’s going to do and he decides to elbow him in the head. Matthias is also in a pretty vulnerable position there as he’s just turning off the boards and retrieving the puck – he can’t possibly see Ribeiro coming.

    Of course, it didn’t happen on HNIC, so all’s well.

  • nucksandbolts

    Rehab-iro is a punk. Wonder how many teams he will be run out of before his career is over.

    Let’s hope that the D corps can stay healthy for a significant time.