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It was an optional morning skate for the Vancouver Canucks out at Rogers Arena today ahead of their matchup with the New York Islanders. The skate wasn’t particularly well-attended, but the team did hold a full practice on Monday, meaning we’re able to put together the puzzle of what the Canucks might look like tonight.
Without further ado, here’s what happened at practice morning skate!
Here’s the Canucks’ lines from Monday, and what we’re expecting they’ll line up like tonight:
Monday #Canucks practice lines
— Brendan Batchelor (@BatchHockey) January 2, 2023
- After being split up after some early signs of success, the Elias Pettersson line with Andrei Kuzmenko and Lane Pederson as his wingers appears to have been reunited.
- The defence pairings remain unchanged, with Kyle Burroughs and Riley Stillman both sitting out in place of the recently returned Travis Dermott.
- JT Miller remains at centre, with Sheldon Dries and Conor Garland as his wingers.
- Spencer Martin was the first goaltender off the ice, meaning he’s the Canucks’ projected starter this evening against the Islanders.
What was said
Tyler Myers spoke about the challenge the Isles present, and reflected on his recent run with Oliver Ekman-Larsson as his defence partner once again.
“We know they didn’t like their last game and they’re going to come on strong,” Myers said of the visiting New York squad. “We need to make sure we’re bringing our best effort from opening puck drop. Like we talked about a little earlier, we need to make sure that we’re coming in ready to work for a full 60.”
“It’s been good, just like old times,” Myers said with a laugh when asked about his reunion with OEL. But we know changes can be made at any time. I think guys have done a really good job, not only for the D but there’s a lot of up front guys who have done a good job of communicating with each other in the room so that when those changes are made, to try and be as best as they can together. It’s the same thing for us no matter who we’re playing with. It’s the same mindset.”
Bruce Boudreau further reflected on what kind of effort his group can expect to see tonight from the Islanders, who are coming off a Sunday night loss to the Seattle Kraken.
“I watch them a lot,” said Boudreau. “If they don’t have a very good game one night, they always come out and have a good game the next night. They’re a work ethic team to start off with. So, I remember last year they had a bad game in Calgary, and then they came into our building and scored five in the first 10 minutes, so we better be prepared for them.”
Puck drop is at 7 PM tonight from Rogers Arena.