Photo credit:© Brian Fluharty-USA TODAY Sports
Scenes from morning skate: Burroughs and Podkolzin skate as extras as Canucks prepare to host the Kings
1 year ago
The Canucks have finally returned home from a long Eastern road trip full of frustration, stress, and front-page headlines about the coaching staff.
Thankfully, the Canucks will get a bit of an easier challenge from facing the league-leading Bruins when they face the… *checks notes* Los Angeles Kings, who’ve won seven of their last ten.
In a lot of ways, the Kings represent everything the Canucks are striving to become. Balanced scoring attack, structured defence, and a style of play built around speed and skill.
While their special teams are nothing to write home about, LA’s nine scorers with over ten points are led by Kevin Fiala’s 18 points in 19 games. For context, the Canucks currently have just five skaters over double digits in points.
Can the Canucks take a crucial Pacific Division foe down at an important time? Or will the Kings’ strength be too much for Bruce Boudreau’s squad to handle?
Let’s check out the line rushes!
- Vasily Podkolzin remains the odd man out after taking a few nasty punches from Boston’s A.J. Greer on Sunday. He was seen out with the other expected scratches, Kyle Burroughs, and Jack Rathbone, after the morning skate. Burroughs sitting in place of Riley Stillman is certainly a choice.
- Will Lockwood was used as an extra skater on Sheldon Dries’ line with Brock Boeser and Nils Höglander. As our very own Chris Faber noted, he was not out on the ice during the first set of rushes, which could indicate he’ll be a scratch tonight as well. Choosing to leave Lockwood out of the lineup, after an outing against Buffalo where he picked up an assist and proved to be a valuable asset defensively, would be a strange choice.
What Was Said
Brock Boeser, who’s still searching for his first goal of the season, knows that sometimes you don’t want to overthink things when you’re in the middle of a slump.
“There’s times I’ve already experienced where you can’t score sometimes or times that you shouldn’t score and you score,” Boeser said. “So I just got to stick with the process here and it’s gonna go in eventually.”
Bruce Boudreau believes that despite the scoring struggles for Boeser and Nils Höglander, the pair have the capabilities to rise above it.
“They’re much better than what they’ve shown, and at some point, that’s going to happen,” Boudreau said. “Both Nils and Brock are going to get out of a little bit of a slump that they’re in and start scoring. So hopefully, it’s tonight.”
Boudreau also hopes that the progress the Canucks’ special teams have made, particularly on the penalty kill, is starting to bear fruit.
“Anytime you make a team go 0-3 when you haven’t done it, I think we’ve kept the team off the scoreboard once this year on the penalty kill — it adds confidence,” Boudreau said. “It doesn’t mean you’re out of the fire or anything. I think we’re 58% at home on the penalty kill, it’s not overwhelming by any stretch. So we’re gonna have to do that over and over and over again.”
The Canucks and Kings will face off at Rogers Arena at 7 P.M. Pacific, with TV coverage on Sportsnet Pacific.
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