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Canucks Report - New Mask

by Staff Writer / Vancouver Canucks

This week on
Injury report

Practice gallery

Game highlights
Plays of the week
Sami Salo didn't miss a shift after appearing injured on the play that saw the Colorado Avalanche tie the game and force overtime Wednesday night but he did miss practice the next day.

Salo was noticably absent from Thursday morning's practice at GM Place. Coach Alain Vigneault confirmed that he is resting from a bruised shoulder and took the day off from the ice today.

A collision with teammate Alex Burrows during a penalty killing shift sent Salo to his knees, struggling to get up in the crease. He finished the game but is now listed as day-to-day.

Kevin Bieksa was another body not at practice this morning with soreness in the lower body. The coaching staff gave him the day off but should be fine by tomorrow.

Bieksa played over 27 minutes last night, while Salo played just under 17 - which the least amount of time he's played all season when he plays all three periods.

Bieksa has 11 points in 13 games this year, which is just one point shy of his point total last year, where he played just 34 games after suffering a calf injury that kept him out part of the year. He's scored three times - more than his two goals last year - and in less games than it took him in his breakout year in 2006-07, where it took him 19 games to score his first three goals.

Pavol Demitra continued to participate in practices with the team, seemingly looking more comfortable and on the path to returning to the lineup. Demitra's been out with a fractured rib since October 19 and started skating with the team on Monday.

Demitra practiced on a line with Taylor Pyatt and Kyle Wellwood in drills today, giving an indication of what the lines may look like once he's ready to make his return to the roster.

He'll return to the wing, a position he's familiar with and comfortable playing, and get an opportunity to generate some welcomed offence.

"Like most of my career, I play almost every single position," said Demitra. "I don’t mind where I’m playing but it’s just playing with the right guy. [Pyatt and Wellwood] are hot right now so hopefully they’ll feed me for a couple of nice goals."

Demitra's played just six games this year before getting injured, scoring two goals and adding an assist to his point total. As a known goal-scorer, he's accomplished three 30-goal seasons and beaten the 20-goal mark six times in his career and aims to add another one to his resume upon his return.

He hasn't indicated whether he'll be ready by Saturday.  The decision likely will not come until game day but trainers are waiting to see how he feels tomorrow before coming to a conclusion.

"We’ll see how it goes for Saturday but everyday is getting better and better," he said. "Yesterday and today were good days, it was a little challenging but I feel good."

Curtis Sanford got a new mask through the summer. Roberto Luongo altered his slightly. And now the Canucks captain debuted a brand new mask at GM Place Wednesday morning.

The new mask will accompany the new third jersey the team plans to unveil tonight when the Canucks host the Sports Celebrities Festival at the Vancouver Hotel. Get photos, a video, and the story behind the design, all here on tonight following the unveiling.

See the new mask and new sweaters live when they make their first appearance on the GM Place ice Saturday against the Toronto Maple Leafs. Watch the game opening live on to see the team in their new garb.
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