The Vancouver Canucks look to get back into the win column with a Tuesday night tilt vs the Florida Panthers at Rogers Arena. The game against the Panthers marks the return of our old friend, Tim Thomas. Thomas has been mediocre at best in his return to the NHL and the Canucks would be more than happy to break their scoring woes with the crusty veteran between the pipes. Check out his helmet, that thing looks ridiculous!
The Canucks are coming off of another heartbreaking loss, this time to the Dallas Stars in a game that saw the Canucks outplay the Stars for most of the game and get a goal disallowed for no good reason.
Check out this crap:
The Florida Panthers (aka: The Canucks Farm Team)
The Panthers are 21 games into the 2013-14 season and already in turmoil. The Panthers fired Kevin Dineen and his coaching staff after a 3-9-4 start to the season. The Panthers are also seemingly in full on sell-off mode having traded Kris Versteeg recently back to Chicago. I’m not sure what concerns me more; the thought of the Canucks losing 5 straight or the thought of Mike Gillis and Dale Tallon in the same building. Please no! Don’t do it Mike, don’t do it!
I’ve been waiting for John Tortorella to take Tom Sestito out of the lineup, but it just hasn’t happened for whatever reason. Dale Weise returns from injury and David Booth will be a healthy scratch. Here’s how the lines looked at practice:
D. Sedin – H. Sedin – Burrows
Higgins – Santorelli – Kesler
Hansen – Richardson - Kassian
Sestito – Welsh – Weise
Garrison – Edler
Hamhuis – Tanev
Stanton – Bieksa
The pretend Larscheid report…
1. Thomas vs Luongo
Roberto Luongo has been very good this season and the Canucks will need another solid effort from him to beat the Panthers. Not that the Panthers are a scary opponent, but, more so, that the Canucks just can’t buy a goal these past few games. Luongo will have no lack of motivation given that Thomas will in the net for the Panthers. Luongo sent out another one of his classic tweets showing that he is very aware of who is back in town.
2. Score More Than 2 Goals
The Canucks absolutely have to break this scoring drought and quickly! The Panthers are the perfect opponent in this respect. I’ll be the first to admit that the Canucks play has been stellar lately, but the bottom-line is that the Canucks need to cash in on their Grade A chances.
3. “Puck Luck!”
To quote Tom Larscheid, the Canucks need some “Puck Luck.” You would think they are more than due for a lucky bounce or a favourable call from the referrees, but that is beyond stating the obvious at this point.
I’m sick of the nervous nellies on the radio or those that are quick to press the panic button because of a few games in which the Canucks have had a lethal combination of good play, poor finishing, and bad luck. The sky isn’t falling! That being said, the Canucks need a win and they need one badly. Canucks take this one 5-2 and no trades happen between the two teams during the process (phew!!!).
Follow Ian Lusher on Twitter at @IanLusher