Petey against Yotes

Coming off a solid win on Monday, the Vancouver Canucks are back in action on Wednesday with the Arizona Coyotes coming to town.

Let’s note it right off the top, Wednesday’s game is a tad bit later than usual and is scheduled for 7:30 pm PT. It’s also Canucks for Kids Fund Telethon Night with Elliotte Friedman and Randip Janda co-hosting this important fundraising event for B.C. kids and families.

Now back to the Canucks, who had a milestone-loaded Monday night where J.T. Miller eclipsed the 100-point mark for the first time in his career, Brock Boeser scored his 40th goal of the season, Conor Garland scored his 100th and 101st career goals in his 400th NHL game, and Artūrs Šilovs picked up the win between the pipes – bringing his record to 3-0-0 on the year.

Game 79 of the season sees the Coyotes in town for what is sure to be an entertaining game as the Yotes are playing some of their best hockey of the season. They are 7-4-0 over their last 11 games and have beaten some strong, playoff-bound teams over that stretch including the Vegas Golden Knights and Nashville Predators.

Through their 7-4-0 run, Coyotes forward Clayton Keller has been electric. The 25-year-old left winger has notched eight goals and added 10 assists for 18 points over his last 11 games. His running mate on the top line, Nick Schmaltz is also producing at a high clip. Schmaltz has three goals and 13 assists for 16 points in his last 11 games.

Nick Bjugstad joins Keller and Schmaltz on the top line and that trio has been on the ice for 11 goals for and eight against in their 164 minutes of ice time as a line.

The Coyotes will be on the second night of back-to-backs on Wednesday, as they are in Seattle to face the Kraken on Tuesday night. Tuesday’s game kicks off a four-game road trip for the Yotes that sees them go through Seattle, Vancouver, Edmonton, and Calgary before returning home to face the Oilers in their final game of the season.

Connor Ingram has held down the fort in the crease this season. He’s made 45 starts and has an impressive .909% save percentage. He ranks 19th in the league with 7.24 goals saved above average.

Karel Vejmelka is getting the start for the Yotes on Tuesday night in Seattle. Which should all but confirm Ingram in net against the Canucks on Wednesday.

Quick Hits on the Competition:

  • Logan Cooley is fourth in rookie scoring with 18 goals and 23 assists for 41 points. He is on a hot streak with five goals in his last five games.
  • Right-shot defenceman Sean Durzi is the leading man for ice time with 22:38 per game.
  • Durzi has picked up eight goals and 29 assists for 37 points this season. He will quarterback the first power play unit and has scooped up 15 power play points.
  • The Yotes rank 13th in the league on the power play. They have converted on 22.4% of their man-advantages this season.
  • Nick Schmaltz is the only player with double-digit goals on the power play, but Clayton Keller is right behind him with nine.
  • The Yotes’ penalty kill is in the lower echelon of the league and has killed off 76.3% of their penalties. That ranks them 27th in the NHL.

Following a win over the Golden Knights on Monday, the Canucks continue to roll toward the playoffs, locking down home-ice advantage for the first round. Only four games are remaining in the regular season and head coach Rick Tocchet liked a lot of things from his team on Monday night.

The Canucks were able to hold tight onto a one-goal lead in the third period and have done a solid job limiting scoring chances.

Since the All-Star break, the Canucks are the best team in the league at allowing scoring chances at five-on-five. They are allowing just 22.01 scoring chances per 60 minutes played.

Protecting the crease has been a focus all season long but Tocchet has also made sure to focus on the team not duplicating mistakes. Tocchet knows that mistakes are going to happen but has liked the way his group is able to stay under control when enduring pressure.

On the offensive side of the ice, Quinn Hughes has been moving around the zone like the Road Runner. He has picked up four goals in his last four games and is now up to 17 on the season. Hughes sits second on the Canucks with 88 points and is four points up on Cale Makar for the most points from a defenceman this season.

Following another hold in the third period, the Canucks are now 40-1-4 when they take a lead into the second intermission. Home ice has been even more impressive, and the team is 22-0-2 at home with a lead after 40 minutes. Third periods have been excellent for the Canucks at Rogers Arena this year – they have outscored their opponents 45-29 in the third stanzas on home ice.

Canucks’ Top Performers over Last Five:

J.T. Miller: 0g-8a-8p 
Quinn Hughes: 4g-3a-7p 
Conor Garland: 3g-2a-5p 
Brock Boeser: 3g-2a-5p 
Dakota Joshua: 3g-1a-4p

Wednesday night’s game is a 7:30 pm PT start, and it can be viewed on Sportsnet. For the radio broadcast, TikTok star Brendan Batchelor has you covered as he will be on the call with Sportsnet 650 and the Sportsnet Radio Network.