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Canucks Report - Gearing up for Game #2

by Staff Writer / Vancouver Canucks

Pyatt
Canucks forward Taylor Pyatt who is on a personal leave of absence may return to the team in the near future. The winger is currently at home in Ontario with his family.

“I have spoken to Taylor a couple times and I do think [his return] is coming here, the next little while,” said head coach Alain Vigneault. “I’m not exactly sure of the time frame there, but he should be coming back soon.”

Asked by reporters if Pyatt would join the team in St. Louis for Games #3 and #4, Vigneault responded that they haven’t gotten as far as scheduling a date for his return.

“I haven’t talked to him about where he is physically," said Vigneault. “[He’s] doing as good as you could be doing in tough circumstances like this.”

GEARING UP FOR GAME #2

The Canucks look to improve their 1-0 series lead over the St. Louis Blues tonight in front of a towel-waving crowd at GM Place. The atmosphere was electric for Wednesday’s Home Opener and the players hope to recreate the excitement by coming out strong.

“I think we need to play a full 60 minutes,” said Vigneault. “I thought our third period [of Game #1] was good, but I do think we can still be better and we have to be better. It’s about getting better every day and putting our best game on the ice tonight. And that’s what we’re going to focus on.

“Nobody in my mind surprised me in that game as far as their play. We need to get better. We had a good third period, but you need to play three periods and sometimes more, so we’re going to have to be better tonight.”

“I'd like to play every period like the last period," said Roberto Luongo, who has only surrendered 2 goals in his last four games. "As far as we’re concerned we just want to play our game and play it hard. It doesn’t matter what period it is or what the score is, we always want to play the same way and establish our game. And make sure that we’re on their players.”

The top line had a strong showing, Daniel Sedin had a goal and an assist, while Henrik added a helper. Vigneault expects the same consistency from them, with added grit from Alex Burrows, and offensive support from the other lines.

“[The Sedins] played like they’ve performed for us all year long,” said Vigneault. “They play hard at both ends of the rink, they’re our best offensive players. I thought they had a good game and I’m expecting another good game from them tonight.

“[Burrows] is a tough guy to play against. He’s a hard worker and all that hard work and the attitude that he puts in every day is helped him progress to the player that he is today. He’s a good story about perseverance.”

The Canucks look to play a more disciplined game after spending 26 minutes in the box in Game #1. Despite being shorthanded seven times, including a long 5-on-3, the Canucks were strong in their defensive style. Their penalty kill from the first game was 85.7%, good enough for 9th in the league overall.

The Vancouver squad has won the second game of the series both times they’ve played St. Louis in the playoffs, in 1995 and 2003, and look to continue in the same line tonight.

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