The Canucks face the Ducks at 7:00 in Rogers Arena for the second time this season. Their last meeting was in Anaheim, where the Ducks win 4-3.
Vancouver’s lineup saw some juggling since Sunday’s game against St. Louis.
Mikael Samuelsson is out with a concussion. Mason Raymond is back on the second line after staying home with the flu Sunday. Jannik Hansen returns to the third line and Jonas Andersson slots in on the fourth with Alex Bolduc and Tanner Glass.
On the defense, Aaron Rome continues to play with Keith Ballard, who will dress despite taking a puck to the mouth that required 25 stitches after practice Tuesday. Andrew Alberts will sit out his second consecutive game after missing Sunday’s game due to illness.
Tuesday night the Ducks won in a 10 round shootout against the Edmonton Oilers. The Canucks try to restart a winning streak after losing 3-2 to St. Louis.
“I think ideally you want to jump on them right away,” said Mason Raymond. “Hopefully they’ll be tired from traveling and playing the night before. That’ll be a key to our start tomorrow night, being all over them and having a real good first period.”
“We want to make sure we get back to where we were before Sunday’s loss,” said starting goaltender Roberto Luongo. “We need to make sure we set a good tempo right off the start, and play well within our system, wait for opportunities and capitalize.”
Prior to last night’s victory, the Ducks had gone two games without scoring a single goal.
“They have a lot of talent,” said Luongo. “They’re a dangerous team. Whether they’re having trouble scoring goals or not, they can. We can’t take that for granted.”
The Canucks will have to watch out for the Ducks top line of Ryan Getzlaf, Corey Perry and Bobby Ryan. All three are medal-winning Olympians, Bobby Ryan won silver with the Americans while Perry and Getzlaf won Gold for Canada.
In their last meeting all three of them scored on Roberto Luongo, but they have all gone without a point in three games.
“Not only in my mind is [Perry] tough to handle for the goaltender,” said Alain Vigneault. “But his hands around the net, he can spin or push off the defensemen and find that loose puck.”
Tonight’s game will celebrate Great Lines in Canuck history. Puck drops at 7:00 on Canucks.com and Sportsnet Pacific.
Hansen: Possible Duck Killer?
Jannik Hansen (2-5-7) was one of only two players, the other being Ryan Kesler, publically praised by Coach Vigneault after Sunday’s loss. He scored one goal and had 15:43 of ice time, including over three minutes on the penalty kill.
“In Jannik’s case, his skating, his puck pursuit, staying on the fore check has enabled the line that he’s playing on to create turn over’s and spend some quality time in the offensive zone,” said Coach V. “His point total might not be as high as the chances he’s gotten, but he’s been an effective player.”
In four seasons Hansen has only played six games against the Ducks, but he has recorded four points.
Hansen returns to the third line with Manny Malhotra and Raffi Torres tonight, but switching linemates doesn’t bother the 24 year-old.
“I don’t think I’ve had 10 games in a row where we’ve played on the same lines,” said the right winger. “There’s always a lot of rotation, so you kind of just go with it, it’s not a hard thing jumping the lines here, because everyone is used to playing on new lines.”
Hansen’s continued improvement and ability to play wherever Coach V puts him could result in a career season for the Denmark native. A broken finger in March 2009 and a broken hand in November 2009 have kept him from playing more than 55 games a season, something he’s hoping to supass this year.
“You can never be too satisfied, when your doing good, you want to do better, when your scoring goals you want to score more goals” he said. “One of the big things for me this year was being consistent. It’s something I’ve struggled with.”
Coach V has already taken note of Hansen’s improved skill and dedication.
“He’s come in on off days to continue to improve his skill set. He’s been coming in early, it’s like any other skill set you need to improve in and Jannik’s doing that.”