By Colin Hope
The Canucks were back on the ice Tuesday following a pair of losses (regulation and shootout) on the NHL’s opening weekend.
With Roberto Luongo trade rumours continuing to swirl, Alain Vigneault brushed aside any concerns the gossip could be negatively affecting his club. “I’m convinced that none of our players are going home saying ‘Lui should be playing or Cory should be playing’ all this stuff is just stuff.”
After splitting the starts between his two netminders, Vigneault announced Schneider will be starting Wednesday night versus Calgary.
As for Luongo, he’s taking the trade talk in stride. “There’s been a lot of stuff said, if I start analyzing every article it’s going to be a long one for me,” said Luongo following practice. “As far as I’m concerned I’m a Vancouver Canuck.”
Jordan Schroeder will be making his debut in a Canucks sweater on Wednesday. The 2009 1st round pick was recalled from Chicago on Monday and skated on a line with Mason Raymond and Dale Weise in practice.
“I’m excited, I’ve been working really hard for this, it’s been a long time,” said Schroeder, who was so busy commuting from Illinois to BC he had yet to let his family know he will be playing.
Schroeder’s arrival means a reshuffling of the forward lines. Alex Burrows will likely be the new centre of the Canucks second line, a position which he hasn’t played a lot of but his coach Vigneault isn’t worried.
“Alex is one of our smarter players as far as being able to play both ends of the rink. He can play left, he can play right, he can play centre right now.”
Zack Kassian will stick with the Sedin’s on the first line after a strong performance on Sunday. “We saw some real solid moments with the puck,” Vigneault said, “everyone can tell he’s picked up another gear. As we move forward here and with dedication on his part and on us keeping the thumb on there, I think we’ll be fine.”
For his part Kassian knows it’s up to him to make the most of the opportunity playing with two of the top players in the game. “I can move down as fast as I moved up. That’s my perspective.”
Vancouver hosts Calgary at Rogers Arena on Wednesday at 7 PM.