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CANUCKS ARMY GDT 3 – CANUCKS VS. JETS

No retro jerseys this evening but it’s a throwback matchup between the Vancouver Canucks and the Winnipeg Jets. If this game sees a goal from Nikolaj Ehlers, Canucks Army as we know it might crumble and our Twitter account may just call it a night. That said if Jake Virtanen can get on the score sheet or notch a big hit we can all keep the status quo.

This new-ish brand of Canucks hockey has been exciting so far, and for once in what feels like forever, it doesn’t feel like anyone is cheering for the Canucks to lose west of the Alberta border. So far, no sight of any Panzer II has reached the Burrard bridge.

Again, let’s do this!

WATCH / LISTEN / FACE-OFF

TV: SNET-VAN

RADIO: SN650

PUCK DROP: 7:00 PM

LINE COMBINATIONS

Joey Kenward tweeted Jake Virtanen was the odd man out in practice during line rushes, and the heir-apparent Brock Boeser was on the Bo Horvat/Sven Baertschi line. Loui Eriksson was bumped down to the fourth line but can you blame Travis Green for that decision? The PP1 unit has been iffy at best so far, and maybe there is a chance Boeser gets a shot there.

Jacob Markstrom has been pretty darn good through two games but we haven’t seen Anders Nilsson yet, and it wouldn’t hurt to see the new guy get a game in the opening week to get his feet wet.

Vancouver Canucks lines courtesy of Dailyfaceoff.com:

 

Dustin Byfuglien will once again sit for the Jets with what is being called a soft tissue issue. Say that ten times fast. Little Mark Scheifele has matured and is now centring the top line in Winnipeg. His wingman Nikolaj Ehlers is along for the ride and could do some damage against the Canucks.

Connor Hellebuyck will get the start in goal. He beat the Oilers on Monday.

Winnipeg Jets lines courtesy of Dailyfaceoff.com:

 

WHAT TO WATCH FOR

    • Daniel and Henrik Sedin lead the Canucks in CF% at 5v5 through two games with 60.71 and 56.67, respectively. Ice time definitely plays a part in this, but even still, the Twins have the highest CF on the team. Things are still happening with the Sedins, and now that their ice time is a bit more reflective of the role they play, their advanced stats might be a bit higher than many will project.
    • Overtime seems like it will be a regular event for Canucks fans this year so let’s just get it out of the way: speed is the name of the game. The Sedins should be the third line in OT with Horvat, Baertschi/Boeser and Michael Del Zotto as unit one and Markus Granlund, Sam Gagner and Alex Edler on the second. Tolerating overtime is fine if there is a realistic chance the Canucks can end it. With all that speed, opponents will be tired enough that the Sedins could sneak in to finish it off if needed. Just saying.
    • One can only imagine Loui Eriksson past Christmas with less than ten goals would trigger some alarms. He hasn’t exactly excited yet, but that $6-million price tag doesn’t get any easier to accept as the games go on. Watch for Eriksson to make some noise tonight, call it a hunch.
    • He wasn’t exactly a full term player for the Kelowna Rockets, but the time Josh Morrissey spent with the WHL powerhouse was enough to see what kind of player he could be in the NHL. Morrissey can skate, he can walk the line, and he has a great shot. One can only hope he slumps long enough for the trade rumours to swirl; I’m sure the Canucks could find a guy to go the other way. Morrissey’s rookie season last year was pretty successful giving him six goals and 20 assists. Chris Tanev isn’t even putting up numbers like that.
    • Sven Baertschi will look to go end-to-end for the second time against Connor Hellebuyck after netting this beauty last season:

      THE TWITTER TAKE

      Canucks? Tough test? Did I sleep? Have I slept? This is the new world apparently. Welcome!

      THE 94 TAKE

      Vancouver and Winnipeg used to have some great battles back in the Bure/Selanne days, and a little 6-5 hockey would be a nice homage to the past. Let’s see Boeser and Patrik Laine turn out the lights.

      OVER/UNDER

      Sedin drop passes in the first period (+/- 3)            The under seems like a good bet on this one. They don’t get creative until the second or so.

      Bo Horvat posts (+/- 2)                                            Again, the under in this one is safe. If Boeser gets his chance, he’ll hit three himself.

  • apr

    I thought Burmitsov would sit, but there is some utility for him playing against his old team. While there is a lot of angst on Boeser/Jake getting in the line-up, its so much better than last year in the shock and awe of seeing Megna and Chaput in the top 6. Its a good thing we have Sutter chasing the other team’s best line. Henrik can’t do it, and Bo needs to be in a more offensive role.

    • Me

      No need for the angst over Boeser. Coach figured he could use a bit of work on his stride and leg strength. I’m sure that’s something they’ll work on through the season. If he can develop as an explosive skater, he could exceed expectations.

  • McGretzky

    Boeser could easily be worth 0.25 goals per game MORE than Dorsett.

    That could have been the difference last game.

    Heck, with his shot he may have been able to win the game in the shootout against Ottawa.

    • Doodly Doot

      I’d speculate that Boeser will be an absolute beast tonight. He likely will keep that up for many games. Pretty sure Burm is on the outside looking in for a while. +1 to Green

  • Doodly Doot

    The Jets are decent. Nothing more, nothing less. If you go up and down the lineup, the Canucks are remarkably comparable. With better goaltending. Jets do have a ‘Byfuglien’ and Scheifele is the best center (player) on either team, but really the Canucks should definitely go toe to toe with these guys.

    Plausible Fantasy Playoffs 2019
    Round 1
    Oilers – Canucks
    Flames – Jets

  • This game, like every game, we have to focus on getting the first goal. This has to be priority one, along with Markstrom making some early saves. We can’t start every game down a goal. We just can’t.

    Big Buff has a soft tissue injury. What to make of that.

    The Winnipeg Jets are a formidable opponent. They should be better than they have shown. They have lots of good young talent, but for some reason, things haven’t clicked in Canada’s northern outpost.

  • Rusty bucket

    My inexperienced thoughts:
    – sit burm or dorsett and keep virt in
    – Love Bo’s bull like style, but imagine if he used his teammates more… and the toe drag less
    – Edler needs to be taken off the PP. Predicitable drop pass breakout, looks for the slap pass way to often, and when he shoots (which is rare) his stick breaks. Get stech or zotto or tanev even.. Tanny’s wrister has come along nicely

    • Jamie E

      I’m with you on Horvat. We need finishers and I’m happy if Horvat is scoring, but other snipers, like Boeser, may be wasted on a line with him if he doesn’t also distribute. Anyways, we’ll see tonight.