Game 23: Daniel Returns For Canucks
The Vancouver Canucks will play just their second game in eight days Sunday as they meet up with the Chicago Blackhawks for the second time this season. The first game at the United Centre saw the Canucks rally with two goals in the third period to win 3-2.
A bit of a rivalry has blossomed between these two franchises. It started last year with a brawl in a game where the Canucks won 4-0. Blackhawks responded by eliminating the Canucks from the playoffs in six games. The latest punctuation in the rivalry came in the first meeting of the season between the two teams when Willie Mitchell leveled Blackhawks captain Jonathan Toews. Toews ended up missing six games as a result.
The Canucks season has been a roller coaster with some ups but mostly several downs in the form of injuries. Things are looking brighter now on the injury front with Daniel expected to return. Henrik has been just fine without his twin brother, however, registering 18 points in 18 games including 4 goals in his last two. Vancouver is coming off back to back victories over the Northwest division leading Colorado Avalanche. The Canucks scored 13 goals in those two games.
The Blackhawks have been on fire recently and are riding a 6-game win streak heading into General Motors Place on Sunday. Over this streak the Blackhawks potent offense has scored 25 goals including a 7-1 destruction of the Calgary Flames. Sophomore Kris Versteeg led the way in that game with two goals while the power play went 4 for 5. Jonathan Toews scored two goals last night in a 5-2 victory over the Edmonton Oilers.
There is potential for some fireworks between these two teams after the aforementioned hit by Willie Mitchell in their series opener. Ben Eager missed that game due to injury and he was a prominent player in the brawl last season when he fought Kevin Bieksa.
The puck drops at 7:00PM Pacific on Sportsnet Pacific with John Shorthouse, John Garrett and Dan Murphy. Joey Kenward has the call on the TEAM1040 with Tom Larscheid.
Canucks: The Canucks lead the league in man-games lost but that lead could end soon as Daniel Sedin returns to the line-up after missing 18 games with a broken foot. Matt Pettinger was re-assigned to the Manitoba Moose of the AHL.
Blackhawks: The Blackhawks have scored 11 goals in their last two games against Calgary and Edmonton but will be playing their third game in four nights. Antti Niemi is a probable starter as Huet played last night in Edmonton.
Game related articles
- Game Preview (NHL.com)
- Canucks come roaring back to win 5-2 over Avalanche (Vancouver Sun)
- Pettinger demoted to the Moose (Vancouver Sun)
- Light shining bright for Canucks battling injury woes (The Province)
- Blackhawks top Oilers 5-2 (Chicago Tribune)
- Salary cap could delay signing of Toews, Kane and Keith (Chicago Tribune)
|Canucks||2.96 (T-11th)||2.68 (10th)||30.4 (13th)||28.8 (T-9th)|
|Blackhawks||3.19 (5th)||2.24 (T-1st)||32.7 (4th)||23.5 (1st)|
|G/G = Goals per game, GA/G = Goals Against per Game
S/G = Shots per game, SA/G = Shots Against per game
|Canucks||H. Sedin - 13||Kesler - 14||H. Sedin - 24||Bieksa - 61||Ehrhoff +11|
|Blackhawks||Kane - 9||Kane - 14||Kane - 23||Byfuglien - 30||Seabrook +11|
|Power Play||Penalty Kill||Shorthanded Goals|
|Canucks||24.2% (6th)||77.3% (24th)||1 GF - 2 GA|
|Blackhawks||22.8% (9th)||85.3% (1st)||2 GF - 2 GA|
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