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Arturs Silovs could start for Canucks in game four as Tocchet hints at game-time decision

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Photo credit:Sergei Belski-USA TODAY Sports
David Quadrelli
1 month ago
NASHVILLE – The Vancouver Canucks may be forced to go with a third starting goalie just four games into their opening round Stanley Cup Playoff match-up with Nashville. 
Head coach Rick Tocchet played coy when asked point blank if Casey DeSmith was his starter for Game 4 this afternoon at Bridgestone Arena.
Tocchet would only say that he has a line-up decision to make for today’s game and wouldn’t elaborate when pressed on the issue.
Reports from CHEK 6 TV’s Rick Dhaliwal and Hockey Night In Canada’s Elliotte Friedman both suggested the decision is goalie-related.
DeSmith stopped 29 of 30 shots in Friday’s 2-1 Game 3 victory. He was bowled over by Predators forward Michael McCarron in a first period collision which earned McCarron a two-minute penalty and a $2000 fine from the National Hockey League.
DeSmith joked about the hit after participating fully in practice on Saturday where he showed no indication of any lingering effects of the contact.
If DeSmith is unable to go this afternoon, Arturs Silovs will make his first NHL playoff start with Nikita Tolopilo dressing for his first NHL game action as the back-up. Those two served as the goaltending tandem in AHL Abbotsford for most  the season and now will likely be in uniform together in the Stanley Cup playoffs.
Silvos, a 23-year-old Latvian, appeared in four late season games for the Canucks posting a 3-0-1 record with a 2.47 GAA and an .881 save percentage.
Silovs’ most recent game action came in an American Hockey League contest on April 19th when Abbotsford beat Calgary 4-3 in overtime.
The Canucks opened the playoffs with Thatcher Demko as their Game 1 starter. He appeared to suffer a knee injury late in the first game and was ruled out ahead of Game 2 when DeSmith took over. DeSmith started the last two games of this series. But with a developing situation in Nashville, it appears Silovs will be the Canucks Game 4 starter.

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