The Vancouver Canucks took the ice at Rogers Arena on Sunday morning for practice ahead of Wednesday’s season opener on the road against Connor McDavid and the Edmonton Oilers.
The Canucks will still hold two final tune-up skates on Monday and Tuesday morning, giving them a few chances to make sure they’re ready to go on Wednesday.
Here’s how the Canucks lined up today:

Line Rushes

  • Quinn Hughes and Conor Garland weren’t present at practice, and the Canucks told CanucksArmy that it was just a maintenance day for both players. Bruce Boudreau said he expects both players to skate tomorrow.
  • Brock Boeser skated in a non contact jersey, and was sniping top corner in practice, much to the delight of his Canucks teammates who cheered as Boeser let go of multiple wristers (nailed it!) with pinpoint accuracy during his first skate since undergoing hand surgery just a couple of weeks ago. Boeser took line rushes on the Canucks’ fourth line alongside Nils Åman and Dakota Joshua.
  • Curtis Lazar skated with Bo Horvat and Vasily Podkolzin, and Andrey Kuzmenko was once again stapled to Elias Pettersson’s wing, with Linus Karlsson lining up on the other side.
  • Ilya Mikheyev skated this morning with the injured players as he recovers from a lower-body injury sustained in the Canucks’ first game of the preseason. Boudreau expects to see him skate tomorrow in a grey non-contact jersey.
We also got an interesting tidbit from the Canucks’ socials team from practice today.
Andrey Kuzmenko prefers boiling hot water in his water bottle instead of cold water.
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What was said

Bruce Boudreau said he’s hopeful that Brock Boeser can return in time for Wednesday’s game in Edmonton, but reiterated that he is in fact not a doctor, and that coaches have different hopes than doctors.
“I think [Brock] was happy to be out there and, his legs are fine,” said Boudreau. “He’s just got to get the rest of his body ready and hopefully he’ll get permission to play on Wednesday.”
As for Ilya Mikheyev, Boudreau spoke about his timeline to return to practice.
“I would be very surprised if [Mikheyev] wasn’t in a grey jersey tomorrow,” said Boudreau. “He’s skating. He’s feeling fine. It’s just a matter of getting him game ready.”
Boudreau also spoke about the excitement of beginning the regular season.
“I think everybody’s excited to play games for real,” said Boudreau. “It’s not like it used to be where you could go through 10 games and say, ‘okay, we’ve got to get our butt going here now,’ you’ve got to get your butt going for game one. We proved that last year. Hopefully, we’re ready to play in Edmonton, because we know they’re certainly going to be ready.”
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Newcomer Riley Stillman also spoke with the media but before we get to him, here’s what Boudreau said about the newest Canuck bringing grit and toughness to the lineup.
“Well, you need it,” said Boudreau. “You need to know that teammates have your back and I think that’s the case with this team. I mean, I think we proved it against Arizona when they dressed a lot of probably tougher guys and but we didn’t back down from them and I thought we held our own pretty well.”
As for Stillman, it’s been a busy few days for him.
“It’s been a little bit of a whirlwind,” said Stillman. “Obviously, getting the call and hearing I was coming here and then jumping on a plane yesterday and making my way here. I got in late last night and it’s been exciting. There’s been a lot of emotions coming through, but I’m happy to be here and excited to be here.”
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