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Photo Credit: © Nick Turchiaro-USA TODAY Sports

Scenes from morning skate: Travis Green’s line blender comes out ahead of Canucks’ home opener

It’s been 595 days since the Vancouver Canucks played a regular season game in front of their home fans at Rogers Arena.

There’s a different aura in the building, and the preseason was just a glimpse at what’s to come tonight. The Canucks are set to play in front of a 100% capacity crowd tonight, and it’s going to be absolutely electric.

Here’s what we saw at morning skate from Rogers Arena.

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Lines 

Remember the Magic Bullet? It was the blender to end all blenders.

Travis Green put his lines in a Magic Bullet today — not just his typical line blender.

  • Justin Dowling is out “at least a week” according to head coach Travis Green. Justin Bailey was officially recalled this morning and skated on the fourth line. Bailey had a very brief preseason stint after a positive COVID-19 test held him out of all of training camp. The 26-year-old forward is off to a hot start in Abbotsford. He’s recorded six points in his first five games and will bring speed to whatever line he’s on.
  • Unsurprisingly so, the defence pairings remain unchanged.
  • Elias Pettersson, who has just one goal and two assists through his first six games of the season, skated on a line with Matthew Highmore and Nils Höglander. The Canucks can go back to the Lotto Line at any time tonight, but Green said there’s a “good chance” that these lines are what they’ll begin the game with tonight.
  • Vasily Podkolzin, who has been a healthy scratch the past two games, will look to make an impact on a top six line alongside J.T. Miller and Brock Boeser tonight. It will be interesting to see how long Podkolzin stays in the top six, because last time the Canucks tried him in that role, it lasted less than a period.
  • Per Green, Thatcher Demko will start tonight and Jason Dickinson is a game time decision.

What was said

Tyler Myers isn’t on social media, so isnt quite fully aware of the reaction his hit on Duncan Keith garnered from Canucks fans.

“Honestly, I haven’t even thought about it until you just brought it up,” said Myers when asked if he’s thought about the reaction he could get from Canucks fans tonight. “I’m not big on social media — I had heard that something was going on and knew that there was some sort of history in the past so I haven’t given it too much thought. I probably still won’t.”

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Conor Garland scored in Arizona’s home opener last season, and said he’s scored in a couple of home openers across multiple leagues he’s played in.

Travis Green cannot wait for tonight.

“We’ve been gone from the fans for a long time,” said Green. “It feels like yesterday, but it’s been a long time. There’s been a lot of change since last time the fans have been in the building. The fans have missed a lot, seen a lot on TV… Having the fans back and playing in Canada, it’s so important. I think just welcoming them back, it’ll be nice to be playing in front of everyone again.”

Puck drop is at 7 PM from Rogers Arena, and we’ll have a complete post game report for you after tonight’s game.