Raffi Torres missed today’s practice with the flu but he is expected to play tomorrow night. Torres has played in all 42 games for the Canucks this season, registering 11 goals and 9 assists.
Slight change in defense pairings during practice today as Andrew Alberts skated with Sami Salo and Aaron Rome with Keith Ballard.
Salo has been practicing with the team but his return is still undetermined.
Cory Schneider will get the start tomorrow night. In his last game against the Oilers, Schneider tied the franchise record for Canucks unbeaten streak by a goalie at 8-0-2. Tomorrow he has a chance to break it. Schneider has yet to face the Rangers in his NHL Career.
KEVIN BIEKSA PLAYS HIS FIRST GAME AT MSG
Kevin Bieksa has played in 322 NHL games, none of them in Manhattan. It’s an anomaly for a veteran who’s spent six seasons as a regular in the NHL.
“I’m excited,” said Bieksa. “It’s one of few rinks that I’ve never played in due to injuries and stuff like that.”
“My first year I got called up right after the road trip and then two years ago I had my laceration and they played there right after I got injured.”
Comparatively, Bieksa has played at Rexall Place in Edmonton 14 times, the most of any building in the NHL. He has only faced the Rangers once in his career.
The media is abuzz with a possible new line nickname for the Vancouver Canucks – a pastime that’s very popular among fans.
The Thumb line.
It started in December when Mason Raymond missed 11 games with a broken thumb. Now Ryan Kesler is nursing a bruised thumb, limiting his contribution in the faceoff circle.
Watch out Jeff Tambellini.
Some memorable Canucks line names:
The Mattress line, featuring the Sedin twins and Jason King (two twins and a king), was a short lived combo that had success during the 2003/04 season.
The iconic West Coast Express line, with Markus Naslund, Todd Bertuzzi and Brendan Morrison, needs no further description
The Life Line of Geoff Courtnall, Trevor Linden and Cliff Ronning, put together during the 1990/91 season, was the key to the Canucks early 90’s success.
The Hack, Whack and Smack line, featuring skilled grinders Stan Smyl, Rich Sutter and Steve Bozek was a hallmark of the late 1980’s Canucks teams.