The Vancouver Canucks (7-2-2) the hottest team in the NHL currently riding a five- game winning streak, including a 4-1 win in Minnesota four days ago, host those same Minnesota Wild (6-5-1) Tuesday night at Rogers Arena.
The Wild arrive in Vancouver following a 2-1 shootout victory in Calgary on Monday, and will be playing their third game in four nights.
“I’m sure they weren’t too happy with the way they played against us last week in their own building,” said Alex Burrows, who picked up an assist in Minnesota. “They are going to try and bounce back and get on a winning streak so we are expecting their best.”
Henrik Sedin could be in store for a night to remember. The Canucks captain is currently a single point behind Markus Naslund, the franchise’s all-time leading scorer. Two points and Henrik moves into top spot, and as chance would have it, no Canuck has more points versus Minnesota than Henrik’s 55 points.
“If you have a few successful seasons like we’ve had in the past you find yourself in this position,” said Henrik who isn’t very concerned with when he breaks his hometown idol’s record. “I’m not going to force myself to make it happen, if it happens it happens, and when it’s going to be a nice feeling.”
Alex Burrows admitted the most important part of tonight will be earning the two points, but having his captain break the record on home ice would be a nice touch.
“He’s meant so much for this organization and has been so good for the last decade, so it would be nice for the fans to see it live.”
Meanwhile, Roberto Luongo will be returning to the crease after watching the last two games. There’s a good reason for Luongo’s return: he hasn’t allowed a goal against Minnesota in Rogers Arena since March 14th, 2011, a span of over three games.
Despite his personal success against the Wild, Luongo was quick to credit his team’s strong defensive play in front of him.
“It’s team play obviously; you can’t do it by yourself. We’ve executed well against them especially in this building and we want to continue that tonight.”
Luongo has yet to drop a game in regulation this season (3-0-2) and sports the second best goals against average (1.53) and save percentage (.940) in the NHL so far this season.
The addition of Luongo to the lineup isn’t only change to the lineup from Saturday’s 5-1 win over Calgary. Manny Malhotra will not be playing due to personal reasons meaning Andrew Ebbett draws back in for the fifth time this season.