| || |
Alain Vigneault is doing what he does best, changing it up and surprising all the media sitting up in the stands today.
With a smaller roster and offensive woes, what can he do?
Jan Bulis, who's been without a goal in 13 games and only three goals through 29 games, hopes to generate more offence skating with the Sedin Twins.
"We've gone through the different line combinations that we've tried," said Vigneault. "That's one that we've only tried a couple times in a short little burst and we're going to give it a try tomorrow."
"It feels good, we haven't played a whole lot together this year," said Henrik Sedin. "Maybe a few practices in training camp but other than that there hasn't been a whole lot."
Tuesday's practice had Ryan Kesler skating with the Twins but today he was joined by Alex Burrows and Trevor Linden. Markus Naslund and Brendan Morrison get acquainted with Matt Cooke on their new line with hopes their familiarity with each other may bring about the Canucks missing offence.
"They've had success in the past," said Vigneault. "Morrison and Markus are elite players in this league and they know we need their contributions, they're well aware of that. I'm sure that's what they want to do for us."
Marc Chouinard, Tommi Santala, and Tyler Bouck round out the bunch on their new line.
"With the healthy personnel that we have available right now, we're getting some balance on the four lines. I think this right now makes sense."
The Canucks are also struggling with their powerplay at 12.1 percent is 27th in the league. Changes here are no surprise.
"With our powerplay percentage right now, I can try whatever I want."
Chouinard and Linden, who have seen a combined 9:19 on the powerplay, will have chance to do some more tomorrow. Linden will be placed with the Twins on the first unit, while Chouinard will get to play with Naslund and Bulis on the second.
"Chouinard last year got a few goals playing the powerplay in Minnesota and he hasn't had that opportunity so we're going to give him that opportunity. Trevor Linden's done that in the past, him and the twins get along well both on and off the ice so I'm hoping there will be a little chemistry there. We're going to try."
Linden, who played a total of 24 minutes on the powerplay last year, averaging about 17 seconds per game, will have to step up at this opportunity for more chances and more ice time.
"He hasn't been given that opportunity so far this year so we're going to put him out there and benefit our team. I'm hoping that he still has the capabilities that he's had in the past."
"It's going to take a few breaks to get out of this funk but I am confident in my ability and I just want to do what it takes to win," said Linden. "That's the bottom line. Any way that we can do that."
It's something new and something different that the Canucks want to try. Something else that's new for the Canucks is defenceman Yannick Tremblay, who was called up from the Manitoba Moose on Wednesday.
Tremblay will likely man the point on one of the powerplay unit with an injured Sami Salo out for 10 days.
"Yannick is a puck moving defenceman and he likes to jump up on the attack. We need our D's to be part of our offence to score more goals. I don't expect him to replace Sami."
"[He's] been out for a couple of years here but he's back in the league and played over 400 games, he's got experience and shouldn't be rattled out there tomorrow, he should be able to play well."