There were no fireworks – at least not in terms of the shenanigans that we became accustomed to last season – in last night's 3-1 win for the Canucks over the Flames but there was still plenty of noise being made and, once again, it was almost exclusively from the youngsters fighting for a spot on the opening night roster. Hunter Shinkaruk notched his second multi-point performance in as many games with a goal and an assist while Nicklas Jensen delivered what turned out to be the game-winning goal after scoring in his second straight outing.
While fans at Rogers Arena tonight would love to see that trend continue, you can bet they'd also like to see some of the veterans get in on the act as well. After showing flashes of promise on Tuesday, the Sedin twins and Radim Vrbata are expected to draw back into the lineup and hopefully continue to show the chemistry they displayed in the win over San Jose. Tonight should also offer Canucks fans their first glimpse of Ryan Miller, the all-star netminder who inked as a free agent with the team this past summer. On the Flames side, expect to see 2014 fourth overall pick Sam Bennett play his second game in as many nights. Karri Ramo, who is expected to challenge Jonas Hiller for the number one goaltender's job in Calgary, could make his pre-season debut tonight. He has been limited in pre-season action due to a hip injury.
Puck drop at 7 pm PT – Live on Sportsnet ONE, TSN 1040, or online at tsnradiovancouver.ca.
2013.14 Season Series
Keys to the Game
Miller time arrives. The Canucks have kept their prized off-season acquisition under wraps so far but the former Vezina Trophy winner could make his much-anticipated Vancouver debut tonight. You can bet the new number one man in town will want to start off strong in front of his brand new fan base even if it's just pre-season.
The PP clicks. If there's one part of their game the Canucks would like to have in top form by the time the regular season starts, it's their power play. Vancouver has yet to score on the man-advantage in pre-season, including going 0-for-4 last night in Calgary. The Canucks' power play was the fifth-worst in the league in 2013.14 connecting on just 15.2 percent of their opportunities.
Here's Johnny. Vancouver fans got an early glimpse of Johnny Gaudreau when made his NHL debut in the regular season finale against the Canucks last year and scored his first NHL goal. 'Johnny Hockey' is one of the players many Flames fans have high hopes for so you know he'll be pushing hard to show he belongs.
By the Numbers
Vancouver's all-time win percentage in pre-season. The Canucks' all-time pre-season record is 156-152-33.
Career games for Ryan Miller against the Flames. He has not faced Calgary since December 27, 2010 (5-2 loss in Calgary).
Shots for Flames' first-rounder Sam Bennett in his pre-season debut last night, leading all players.
Shooting percentage for the Canucks so far in pre-season – nine goals on 54 shots.
Average shots-on-goal against per game the Canucks have allowed after three pre-season games.
Games played by Mason Raymond as a member of the Canucks. Raymond joined the Flames this past summer after spending last season with Toronto.