SHIROKOV OUT GLASS IN
Looking for their first win of the season (0-3-0), the Canucks face off against the Montreal Canadiens tonight at GM Place. The Habs are coming off a 4-3 loss to the Calgary Flames Tuesday night. Last season, these two team broke even (1-1-0) each collecting a win.
Sami Salo, who did not practice with the team yesterday, is expected to play tonight. Tanner Glass is also expected to see game action skating alongside Steve Bernier and Kyle Wellwood, bumping Mason Raymond to the second line with linemates Ryan Kesler and Mikael Samuelsson.
“I know we have a really deep group here, and a talented group,” said Glass post practice this morning.
“I’ll take my shot whenever the coaches see fit. I’m a team guy, I’m trying to make sure we win as a team and lose as a team, and if that means I’m a scratch a few nights here and there that’s fine with me. I just got to make the best of my opportunities when I can.”
“First time I saw [Glass] obviously he caught our attention,” said head coach Alain Vigneault. “[Glass] was definitely a player that played with a lot of grit a lot of emotion and everyday he kept stepping on the ice, he kept catching our attention and earned a spot on the team.
Sergei Shirokov, who has struggled to find his game, is expected to be a healthy scratch.
Expected lines for tonight’s game:
Daniel - Henrik – Burrows
Raymond - Kesler – Samuelsson
Glass - Wellwood - Bernier
Hordichuk - R. Johnson - Rypien
Mitchell - Salo
Bieksa - Edler
O'Brien - Ehrhoff
Prior to tonight’s game, the Canucks will honor BC Lions Head Coach and General Manager Wally Buono with a ceremonial puck drop. Game time is 7 PST.
‘BOYS, PICK IT UP’
After a stellar preseason going 7-0-2, the Canucks were hoping to carry over the momentum that saw them win 6 straight games into the regular season. Unfortunately, the teams still working out the kinks before things start clicking again.
“It's not fun to start 0-3,” said netminder Roberto Luongo. “It bothers me. I had a great camp. I felt awesome. I felt that I couldn't be beat in camp. But there were a couple rough games on the road. And now, all of a sudden, things are not going the way you want them to.”
“We’re trying to get a win here, to be honest that’s number one,” explained veteran Willie Mitchell.
“I think everyone feels we’re really close, we too good of a team. We’re been working on a lot of things with coaching staff as far as systems and mistakes. Were carrying play for large portions of the game, it’s just some mistakes were making over the ice, as far a fundamental mistakes, that are costing us and as we play more and more together as a group we’re getting better and better at it. You can see that.”
Defencman Willie Mitchell, who netted 3 goals and 20 assists (3-20-23) last season with the Canucks, now finds himself in an unusual position leading the club in scoring with 1 goal and 2 assists (1-2-3) this season.
“Of course I have, come on,” joked Willie Mitchell when asked if he has ever lead team scoring. “Maybe in college, college one year I might have come close. Defencemen aren’t leading scorers so boys, pick it up.”