Scenes from Canucks skate: JT Miller embracing PK challenge in home opener vs. Oilers

Photo credit:© Bob Frid-USA TODAY Sports
David Quadrelli
6 months ago
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HELLOOOOO CANUCKS FANS! CAN YOU FEEL IT!? The regular season is finally upon us! And of course, that means it’s time for our first real edition of Scenes from morning skate! This is the article where we bring you line combinations and the (most) interesting things that were said by the players and head coach before every Canucks game!
It starts tonight with the Edmonton Oilers in town! Let’s get into what we saw!

What we saw

-Ilya Mikheyev skated on the fourth line alongside Nils Höglander and Sam Lafferty, but will not play tonight.
-Carson Soucy is progressing much better than expected, and could return as soon as Saturday in Edmonton. Tocchet also didn’t completely rule Soucy out for tonight’s game, either.
-Teddy Blueger is a game time decision after blocking a shot. If Blueger cannot play, the Canucks will likely dress 11 forwards. Thanks Bettman!
-It looks like the recently recalled Akito Hirose will suit up alongside Noah Juulsen to kick things off tonight, meaning the Canucks’ “break glass in case of emergency” first pairing of Quinn Hughes and Filip Hronek could be in for a very high-minute night.
-Thatcher Demko will be the Canucks’ starter in goal tonight, as expected.
As we close out the what we saw section, this is a question I want to pose to our readers in the comments section below: Will Quinn Hughes log over or under 27 minutes of total ice time tonight?

What was said

JT Miller spoke about getting off on the right foot for Rick Tocchet’s first full season as Canucks coach.
“He came in last year and kind of had to implement everything on the fly, which is hard because you’re playing every other day,” said Miller. “You know, we’ve had a lot of time to talk and think about what we want to do and just get the reps and how to [make them] become habits and not just one-offs. We’ve been doing a good job of that, so it’s time to put it to the test.”
Miller also spoke about putting the Canucks’ seemingly-improved penalty kill to the test against what should be the league’s best power play for the second year in a row.
“I mean, that was just preseason. This is the real deal against the best players in the world, so definitely gonna test us but you know, we should want this and embrace this. For me, being on the kill, these are the moments I want to be in against the best power play and some of the best players in the world. Super easy to get up today, and that’s obviously a big challenge for us.”
Rick Tocchet said all the usual cliches, but did mention that he’s got a couple second-long cameo in the Canucks’ new in-arena intro video, which drops tonight. Last year’s video was up for an Espy Award, and it will be interesting to see how the Canucks top that this year. Here is the teaser we’ve been given…


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