The Vancouver Canucks open their 50th season tonight with a matchup against a divisional rival, the Edmonton Oilers. Tonight's game is presented by Toyota.
Morning skate update
It's finally go time. Bo Horvat is pumped to kick off the season and build on last year. Asked if he takes pride in the Canucks being a hard team to play against, he said that's the identity they want: to be the hardest working team on the ice every night.
Video: PREGAME | Horvat at Oilers
The Canucks have 10 new players on their roster compared to their home opener last season and Brock Boeser is prepearing to skate alongside one of those new faces in Micheal Ferland. That duo, combined with Elias Pettersson, will comprise Vancouver's top line, although how exactly they'll mesh together is a mystery. Ferland was sick for much of the pre-season, before Boeser missed time in concussion protocol. Tonight will be the first time they hit the ice together.
Video: PREGAME | Boeser at Oilers
Stats Stats Stats
This marks the fourth time in team history the Canucks have faced the Oilers for a season opener. The Canucks have posted a record of 2-1-0 in those games.
The last time the Canucks and Oilers met in a season opener was Oct. 7 in 2017.18, ending in a 3-2 Vancouver win.
Tonight's game marks the sixth time the Canucks have played their first road game of a season in Edmonton. The Canucks have gone 3-1-1-1 in those games.
Vancouver and Edmonton will face off four times this season: Oct. 2 (road), Nov. 30 (road), Dec. 1 (home), and Dec. 23 (home).
The Canucks have a 26-17-5 all-time Opening Night record.
Alex Edler leads current Canucks in career points vs Edmonton with 8-22-30 in 58 games, followed by Loui Eriksson (4-15-19 in 39 games) and Tanner Pearson (5-6-11 in 18 games).
LAST MEETING - Mar. 7/19: VAN 2 at EDM 3
Jay Beagle notched the Canucks first goal of the night at 18:30 in the second...Alex Edler drew the Canucks within one in the third period...Brock Boeser led Canucks skaters in scoring with two points (2 assists)...Thatcher Demko faced 34 shots.
NEW FACES IN 2019.20
Heading in to the 2019.20 season, a total of five players will make their debut in a Canucks uniform.
Jordie Benn joined the team as a free agent on July 1. Last year, Benn racked up 22 points (5-17-22) and 39 PIM over the course of 81 games with the Montreal Canadiens. He ranked third among Canadiens defencemen in scoring last season and set career highs for goals, points and games played. His 17 assists tied a previous career high, set in 2013.14 with the Dallas Stars.
Oscar Fantenberg split the 2018.19 season between the Los Angeles Kings (2-1-3 in 46 games) and Calgary Flames (0-1-1 in 15 games.) He signed as a free agent with Vancouver on July 1.
J.T. Miller was acquired by the Canucks from the Tampa Bay Lightning in exchange for goaltender Marek Mazanec, a 2019 third round pick and a 2020 conditional pick. He recorded 47 points (13-34-47) in 75 games for the Lightning in 2018-19. The 6-1, 218- pound centre also netted a career-high 20 power play points. His 34 assists on the season tied a career-high and his 47 points was his third highest total in a single season.
Tyler Myers signed as a free agent on July 1. He led all Winnipeg Jets defencemen in goals (9) and tied for second among blueliners in points (31) during the 2018.19 season. His three game-winning goals also paced Jets blueliners while his 156 shots on goal ranked second.
Micheal Ferland posted a career-high in assists with 23 while his 17 goals and 40 points were his second highest career total in both categories in 2018.19. His six power play goals on the season also ranked tied for third on the Hurricanes while his 12 power play points ranked fourth. He also notched an assist in seven games with the Hurricanes during the Stanley Cup playoffs. Ferland joined the Canucks as a free agent on July 10.
The 2019.20 campaign marks the 50th season of the Canucks franchise in the NHL and will include a season-long celebration honouring five decades of Vancouver Canucks hockey as an exciting new era begins. The following includes some of the highlights:
- Opening Night, presented by TD, is scheduled for Wednesday, October 9th versus the Los Angeles Kings, the anniversary date and first Canucks opponent from their debut season in 1970.71.
- November includes the first of an Era Series that acknowledge the decades in Canucks history with a 1970's celebration where the greats of the inaugural decade of Canucks hockey will be honoured during their game versus the St. Louis Blues on Tuesday, November 5th.
- On December 3, 2019, when the Canucks take on the Ottawa Senators, Alex Burrows will become the seventh player inducted into the Canucks Ring of Honour.
- December is highlighted by the second of the Era Series, a 1980's Night celebration on Saturday, December 7th versus the Buffalo Sabres where memories of the white towel and the Canucks first march to the Stanley Cup Final will be remembered throughout the night.
- January sees the return of some familiar faces from our past and the Black Skate jersey, highlighting a celebration of all things 1990's on Saturday, January 4th versus the New York Rangers. The Canucks annual Lunar New Year Game will be played on Saturday, January 18th versus the San Jose Sharks.
- Daniel and Henrik Sedin's careers will be celebrated over three consecutive home games in the month of February. The week will begin on February 10th versus the Nashville Predators with a special game night celebrating the careers of the four legends who have their numbers already hanging in the rafters: Stan Smyl, Trevor Linden, Markus Naslund and Pavel Bure. On February 12th versus the Chicago Blackhawks, the first Sedin celebration game will take place, presented by Budweiser. It will highlight the twins' extraordinary on-ice excellence and include an historic pre-game ceremony where No. 22 and No. 33 will be raised to the rafters. The week will conclude on February 16th versus the Anaheim Ducks with a family-focused weekend matinee game recognizing the Sedins' widespread off-ice contributions to the community and the province of British Columbia.
- March is highlighted by March 6th versus the Colorado Avalanche, with a celebration of arguably the most exciting era of Canucks history including memories throughout the night of the West Coast Express, the reign of Lu, and of course, dragons and stanchions as we celebrate the most recent era, the 2000's. A family-fun and festive atmosphere will be had for those in attendance on Next Generation Day on Sunday, March 15th versus the Winnipeg Jets where the club will look ahead to the bright future of hockey in British Columbia.
- The Canucks wrap up their regular season schedule by honouring the great fans that have supported the team for 50 years with Fan Appreciation Night, presented by Pepsi, on Saturday, April 4th versus the Vegas Golden Knights.