TV / RADIO / PUCK DROP
SN / SN 650 / 6:00 PM
Wishing for a Vancouver Canucks victory in the preseason seems to be a big request this season. Travis Green’s Canucks roll into Edmonton to take on the Oilers where both teams will be looking for meaningful contributions from not only the prospects but the veterans as well. The Canucks have crawled their way through the first five games and will need at the very least one big game to remember.
Brock Boeser has been pretty invisible thus far and may just be saving his talents for the regular season. There are still a few battles for roster spots in Vancouver and a solid 60 minutes from Tyler Motte, Brendan Gaunce, and Adam Gaudette might just get them to the first game.
A decent Oilers team plays a struggling Canucks team. It’s going to be interesting.
Vancouver Canucks projected lines this evening:
**will update when available**
Edmonton Oilers projected lines this evening:
Expected Oilers lines tonight:
— Reid Wilkins (@ReidWilkins) September 25, 2018
- Anders Nilsson will get the start tonight for the Canucks. He hasn’t seen really any time so tonight is important to get minutes in. Thatcher Demko hasn’t electrified so he’ll probably start in Utica which is just fine. When he feels he’s ready and when the coaches and management feel he’s ready, the net will be Demko’s. Until then, Jacob Markstrom and Nilsson will compete for the net.
- Bo Horvat is among the league leaders in the preseason for registered shots on net with 10. He’s five back of the league and he’s only played three games. He’s ready for the season to begin.
- Elias Pettersson will get another shot to impress against the Oilers and of all the players that need to impress, he’s been one of a few that have lived up to the billing. It’s very early in his career so the bright lights may stay away from him to start the season but another game will only help his progression. Ryan Strome might need to tape up those ankles before puck drop. Just saying.
- Jay Beagle needs to relay some veteran leadership to his teammates ahead of this one. Even though he’s but one player with his name on the Cup, loosening the tension in the room might boost some efforts with the young guys. Beagle scoring tonight would be great too!
- Ask yourself this: Is Sam Gagner a Canuck on opening night?
MY 94 CENTS
Willie Desjardins used the word “must” a few seasons ago and this Canucks squad in the preseason hasn’t shown any must. There haven’t been consistent line combinations, the pushback from the obvious candidates like Jake Virtanen, Erik Gudbranson, and Tim Schaller to name a few have been minor at best. Thankfully, it’s a cluster of a situation when all these games are played in such a short amount of time with tons of different players trying to make this team.
Don’t put too much into the results because the systems haven’t been finalized yet and even guys like Brock Boeser won’t show their true worth until the real games begin.
THE FINAL WORD
“Early on, it was tough to get into this one. The nets took the flow out of it, but we picked it up in the 2nd. We lost it in the 3rd. We have some things to iron out. That’s what the pre-season is for.” – Gagner
— Vancouver Canucks (@Canucks) September 25, 2018
Sam Gagner should not be the voice of “reason” for the Canucks. The Canucks were not good in that one and Green should fit in a bag skate again. Blaming a loss on nets ruining the flow is what you say when you weren’t good enough and need to hang on to something, anything.