With Vancouver Canucks forward Chris Higgins now listed as day-to-day with a foot infection, Jannik Hansen gets a chance to continue his career-best goal pace with a move up to the second line.
Hansen has goals in consecutive games and seven overall, just two shy of his career high despite a terrible start, with only one goal in the first 14 games.
The upward movement on the right side of the forward lines continues with Dale Weise promoted into Hansen's old spot on the third line, and Victor Oreskovich called up from Chicago of the AHL to play on the fourth unit. It's a position Oreskovich lost to Aaron Volpatti with an inconsistent preseason that didn't include nearly enough physical play for his head coach's liking, prompting the Canucks to claim Weise off waivers from the New York Rangers.
"Every player has a different skill set, every player brings something different to the table," coach Alain Vigneault said. "Every player has to figure out to play in this League what he has to do. And every player has to figure out on certain teams, 'for me to play on that team, what's the role I might have to do?'"
With Volpatti now in need of shoulder surgery to repair a torn labrum, the 25-year-old Oreskovich gets another chance to use his 6-foot-3, 215-pound frame more effectively, and earn back a role he played for 35 games last season, including 19 in the playoffs.
"He knows what he had to do and he has to do it consistently," Vigneault said.
As for Higgins, medication reduced the swelling in his foot and he's improving, but the team isn't yet sure if he'll travel to start a five-game road trip that opens Thursday.
Here's how tonight's Canucks lineup could look:
Daniel Sedin - Henrik Sedin - Alexandre Burrows
David Booth - Ryan Kesler - Jannik Hansen
Mason Raymond - Cody Hodgson - Dale Weise
Manny Malhotra - Maxim Lapierre - Victor Oreskovich
Dan Hamhuis - Kevin Bieksa
Alexander Edler - Sami Salo
Keith Ballard - Aaron Rome
Roberto Luongo makes his second-straight start after watching five in a row, with Cory Schneider returning to his backup role for now.