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Canucks Game Day: Duck hunting for a must-win

The Canucks perform the first of back-to-back nights Wednesday in Anaheim. California dreaming may be picking up victories there and in L.A. on Thursday, but they are crucial to any write-up-period hopes.

Up coming Activity: WEDNESDAY

Vancouver Canucks (25-25-7) at Anaheim Ducks (21-26-9)

7:30 p.m., Honda Centre. TV: Sportsnet, Radio: Sportsnet 650 AM


Bob Murray vs. actuality

The Ducks’ boss lastly fired Randy Carlyle on Sunday, adhering to a disastrous run that saw his team slide to the base of the NHL’s Western Conference standings.

Bob Murray will shortly recognize up close that his team just cannot rating. They are battling goalie accidents. They were being riddled with accidents to their defence corps earlier this calendar year.

5 KEYS TO THE Activity

Will it be Jacob Markstrom who's back in net for the Canucks on Wednesday? (Photo: Jonathan Daniel, Getty Images files)

Will it be Jacob Markstrom who’s back in internet for the Canucks on Wednesday? (Photograph: Jonathan Daniel, Getty Visuals information)

Jonathan Daniel /

Getty Visuals

1. Who’s in target?

Jacob Markstrom was held out of Monday night’s video game simply because of a minor damage, 1 that coach Travis Eco-friendly was fearful about aggravating. So does that signify he’s healthier once again to perform in Anaheim? Or will the team have to call once again on Mike DiPietro, the 19-calendar year-aged prospect who did his most effective but was overmatched by the San Jose Sharks on Monday?

Or could recently acquired Marek Mazanec make a commence?

2. Defence

The Canucks’ defence was a worry coming into the period. No new faces on the blue line for a group that struggled to command its have conclusion or contribute offensively. Right until a short while ago, the Canucks experienced been substantially enhanced in this place. But about the earlier 4 months or so, that storyline has gone south. On Saturday, it was simply just a scenario of much too several photographs versus. Arrive Monday, it was a scenario of much too several good quality photographs versus a younger goaltender. Lots to fix.

3. Horvat’s scoring

The Canucks’ spirit chief now has 20 goals immediately after scoring versus the Sharks on Monday. He’s been accomplishing anything he can this period to propel the Canucks nearer to their aspiration of: 1) making the playoffs and 2) evolving into a contender. That he’s scoring once again is a fantastic sign for a team that even now harbours (faint) playoff hopes. Horvat has goals in two straight game titles and 3 in eight game titles.

Erik Gudbranson celebrates with Bo Horvat, correct, immediately after Horvat scored on the Calgary Flames in the first period of time at Rogers Arena Saturday night.

Gerry Kahrmann /


4. Playoff hopes

Next Monday’s unpleasant decline, assignments the Canucks as obtaining a 1-in-7 prospect of making the postseason. To say Wednesday’s video game in Anaheim and Thursday’s in Los Angeles are need to-get is not overstating the details.

5. Kesler’s woes

The broken down ex-Canuck keeps actively playing, but he has not scored due to the fact Nov. 6. He has just 4 goals on the period. Kesler even now has 3 years remaining immediately after this period on his contract, which carries a cap hit of $6,875,000 per period.


LW – C – RW

Josh Leivo — Elias Pettersson — Brock Boeser

Antoine Roussel — Bo Horvat — Jake Virtanen

Loui Eriksson — Jay Beagle — Tyler Motte

Nikolay Goldobin — Markus Granlund — Zack MacEwen

Defence pairings

Chris Tanev — Erik Gudbranson

Ben Hutton — Troy Stecher

Derrick Pouliot — Alex Biega

Goalies: Jacob Markstrom, Michael DiPietro

Sick BAY

Sven Baertschi (write-up-concussion syndrome), Thatcher Demko (knee), Alex Edler (concussion), Brandon Sutter (groin)

DUCKS’ Lines

LW – C – RW

Rickard Rakell — Ryan Getzlaf — Corey Perry

Devin Shore — Ryan Kesler — Jakob Silfverberg

Nick Ritchie — Adam Henrique — Daniel Sprong

Brian Gibbons — Derek Grant — Carter Rowney

Defence pairings

Cam Fowler — Josh Manson

Hampus Lindholm — Brandon Montour

Jaycob Megna — Michael Del Zotto

Goalies: Chad Johnson, Kevin Boyle

Sick BAY

Ondrej Kase (shoulder), Ryan Miller (knee), John Gibson (higher body), Patrick Eaves (flu).

Distinctive Teams

Electric power perform

Canucks: 16.1% (26th) Ducks: 14.9% (29th)

Penalty kill

Canucks: 79.8% (18th) Ducks: 19.7% (20th)

• Listen: On this episode of the White Towel podcast, Patrick Johnston is joined by the Utica Observer-Dispatch’s Ben Birnell to chat about the Utica Comets:

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