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Photo Credit: © Brace Hemmelgarn-USA TODAY Sports

Canucks Army Game Day 52 – Canucks @ Avalanche (24k Magic Edition)

THE INTRO

In their first game after the All-Star break and the bye week, the Canucks step back on the ice away from Rogers Arena to take on the Colorado Avalanche. Both teams are tied with 52 points and the final Wild Card spot in the Western Conference. There is a ton of firepower in the Avs lineup tonight but the Canucks have changed it up a bit and will look to counter with a Pettersson line that has done some damage in the past.

The Hockey Night in Canada crew may end up getting a beauty of a game but it’s up to the Canucks if they want to be part of it.

Let’s Do This!™

TV / RADIO / PUCK DROP

CBC / SN 650 / 7:00 PM (HNIC)

LINEUPS

The biggest news of all is that Nikolay Goldobin will play tonight, Travis Green confirmed. Tim Schaller should be the healthy scratch sitting out because, at the end of the day, even Markus Granlund is better. According to Brendan Batchelor, Goldobin will most likely start with Elias Pettersson and Brock Boeser. It’s a safe move but if Green wants production he has to go back to the well, I suppose.

Bo Horvat should see Josh Leivo and Sven Baertschi as his linemates, the third line remains intact and Loui Eriksson has been bumped down to the fourth line with Jay Beagle and Tyler Motte. The clock is ticking for a few of these guys as a handful of Utica Comets are making some serious noise and deserve a call-up.

Jacob Markstrom will be the likely starter. There is a back to back next week so Thatcher Demko will see one of those. That being said, he needs more starts so throw the kid to the wolves.

Canucks lines courtesy of Dailyfaceoff.com:

LW C RW Forwards
Sven Baertschi
SVEN BAERTSCHI

Rating: 74.4#34 LW

Elias Pettersson
ELIAS PETTERSSON

Rating: 79.7#20 C

Brock Boeser
BROCK BOESER

Rating: 81.9#5 RW

FL1 Rating
Rating: 78.64#11 FL1
Josh Leivo
JOSH LEIVO

Rating: 73.0#52 LW

Bo Horvat
BO HORVAT

Rating: 76.3#40 C

Markus Granlund
MARKUS GRANLUND

Rating: 71.8#80 RW

FL2 Rating
Rating: 73.68#22 FL2
Antoine Roussel
ANTOINE ROUSSEL

Rating: 71.2#83 LW

Brandon Sutter
BRANDON SUTTER

Rating: 71.1#132 C

Jake Virtanen
JAKE VIRTANEN

Rating: 70.8#91 RW

FL3 Rating
Rating: 71.06#23 FL3
Loui Eriksson
LOUI ERIKSSON

Rating: 72.3#67 LW

Jay Beagle
JAY BEAGLE

Rating: 68.0#187 C

Tyler Motte
TYLER MOTTE

Rating: 69.2#112 RW

FL4 Rating
Rating: 69.81#21 FL4
DEFENSIVE PAIRINGS Defense
Alexander Edler
ALEXANDER EDLER

Rating: 75.6#19 LD

Chris Tanev
CHRIS TANEV

Rating: 71.7#68 RD

DL1 Rating
Rating: 73.65#22 DL1
Ben Hutton
BEN HUTTON

Rating: 71.3#83 LD

Troy Stecher
TROY STECHER

Rating: 72.5#51 RD

DL2 Rating
Rating: 71.89#23 DL2
Derrick Pouliot
DERRICK POULIOT

Rating: 70.7#94 LD

Erik Gudbranson
ERIK GUDBRANSON

Rating: 68.6#100 RD

DL3 Rating
Rating: 69.66#26 DL3

Mark Barberio is still out and Ryan Graves was called up earlier this week and is in his place. Vladislav Kamenev had shoulder surgery and is likely done for the year, tough break. Erik Johnson is back after missing a few games due to concussion symptoms. Otherwise, the Avs look as dangerous as they have all season and the Canucks will need a big effort to keep this one close.

Semyon Varlamov should be the starter this evening.

Avalanche lines courtesy of Dailyfaceoff.com:

LW C RW Forwards
Gabriel Landeskog
GABRIEL LANDESKOG

Rating: 78.6#11 LW

Nathan Mackinnon
NATHAN MACKINNON

Rating: 87.4#2 C

Mikko Rantanen
MIKKO RANTANEN

Rating: 81.5#6 RW

FL1 Rating
Rating: 82.52#2 FL1
Colin Wilson
COLIN WILSON

Rating: 71.3#82 LW

Carl Soderberg
CARL SODERBERG

Rating: 74.7#55 C

JT Compher
JT COMPHER

Rating: 71.3#81 RW

FL2 Rating
Rating: 72.45#29 FL2
Sven Andrighetto
SVEN ANDRIGHETTO

Rating: 70.7#93 LW

Alexander Kerfoot
ALEXANDER KERFOOT

Rating: 74.8#54 C

Matt Calvert
MATT CALVERT

Rating: 71.0#90 RW

FL3 Rating
Rating: 72.17#14 FL3
Matthew Nieto
MATTHEW NIETO

Rating: 69.4#115 LW

Sheldon Dries
SHELDON DRIES

Rating: 71.5#120 C

Gabriel Bourque
GABRIEL BOURQUE

Rating: 66.4#129 RW

FL4 Rating
Rating: 69.07#29 FL4
DEFENSIVE PAIRINGS Defense
Ian Cole
IAN COLE

Rating: 72.0#70 LD

Samuel Girard
SAMUEL GIRARD

Rating: 73.3#45 RD

DL1 Rating
Rating: 72.62#26 DL1
Tyson Barrie
TYSON BARRIE

Rating: 78.9#13 LD

Nikita Zadorov
NIKITA ZADOROV

Rating: 70.1#107 RD

DL2 Rating
Rating: 74.49#6 DL2
Ryan Graves
RYAN GRAVES

Rating: 73.3#43 LD

Patrik Nemeth
PATRIK NEMETH

Rating: 71.0#88 RD

DL3 Rating
Rating: 72.18#14 DL3

 

YOUR INFORMATIONAL NEEDS FOR TONIGHT’S GAME

  • Elias Pettersson will take the headline duties (see I’m always typing his name first) but Bo Horvat and Brock Boeser are a few goals away from 20 on the season. A high-scoring affair could get Bo there first (18) and sure, Brock (16) could get there but we have a better chance of seeing the Canucks trade Alex Edler before the deadline. Goldobin is back in the big spot beside Boeser and Pettersson so if it’s anyone’s night to score, it’s definitely his.
  • Goldobin aka “24k Magic” is 4th on the Canucks in primary assists with nine, one back of Horvat for 3rd. As one of the top setup guys on the team statistically, all the other noise about why he shouldn’t be in the lineup needs to be ignored for a game or two. This is the ultimate carrot and if he goes two or three games with nothing to show, make the move at that point. The Canucks are struggling to score goals right now, well actually all season, and whether they want to or not, the line that has worked well is indeed the one in the spotlight. There’s going to be a call-up sooner than later and 24kM needs to produce. Time’s running out.
  • Woke people might need to start calling Pettersson “Bob Ross” because he is among the NHL’s best at penalties drawn per 60. As a side note, any proven theft of said joke will be punished. But seriously, Pettersson is drawing 1.67 penalties per 60 minutes which is good for 11th overall. He really does everything. Antoine Roussel isn’t far behind with a 1.50 HB2 rate.
  • One of Canucks Army’s “most talked about articles” in recent memory revealed some unfortunate data that should all but bury the Erik Gudbranson experiment. Since Gudbranson joined the Canucks, he is by far the one guy that should not be on the ice at all. His GA at 5v5 per 60 is a full 0.01% higher than any one of the defensemen on the team in that time. Edler is the next closest player having played 1000 more minutes in the same situation and is operating at a 0.04% GA. People talk about sustainability and this is definitely something no one wants to continue. Cut bait, Jim.
  • It’s been quite some time since Jake Virtanen scored on a Saturday, Nov 10 in Buffalo to be exact. It’s also been a long haul without a goal at all (Dec 20th). The talk has been Goldobin but Virtanen needs to find his spot again.

MY 94 CENTS

I missed the Hurricanes game before the ASG because I was busy watching Vegas host the Preds (guys, it was awesome!) so I’m kind of happy I missed it. Tonight though, I have a good feeling. Everyone has had a week to just let loose and team bond and all that jazz and I think the Canucks have a lot more to give in the second half of the season.

I want to believe they’re a better team than they’ve shown and tonight would be a good test to see if I’m sort of right.

I’m wrong a lot, as you know, so this might be the wrong night to call this.

THE TWITTER TAKE

If we don’t have the death stare, what are we even doing then?