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At the Rink: Coyotes at Canucks

by Kevin Woodley

VANCOUVER -- Jannik Hansen doesn't remember passing out on the Vancouver Canucks bench Saturday, but he never thought he was unconscious long enough to believe something seriously was wrong.

Despite spending Saturday night in a hospital, Hansen confirmed he will play against the Arizona Coyotes on Monday after tests confirmed his scary collapse had nothing to with heart problems.

"I kind of lost my wind," Hansen said. "It happens from time to time. But I wasn't able to catch it quick enough and I took a quick nap on the bench. It's scary in the moment but I had an idea it wasn't anything with the heart. It was basically I couldn't breathe so I wasn't too worried. But you go through all the precautions to get checked and double-checked and triple-checked and get the OK sign."

Hansen was hit by Calgary Flames defenseman Dennis Wideman 1:27 into the second period Saturday and skated on his own to the bench, where he remained hunched over before slumping forward unconscious. Play was stopped while Canucks doctors rushed to Hansen, who was pulled up by teammates before waking up and walking to the locker room with help from the medical staff.

"I remember sitting on the bench kind of trying to catch my breath and then I remember them pulling me up," he said. "A couple of seconds, no more. [The doctors said] something about when you pass out the spasm relaxes and you can breathe again. It takes a couple seconds, that was it, and full air would happen right after too."

Hansen was at the hospital when the Canucks won the game 3-2 on an overtime goal by defenseman Christopher Tanev. It was Tanev's second goal in 32 games

"I had to ask twice when the nurses said it was [Tanev],” Hansen said.

Hansen wasn't released from the hospital until 1 p.m. on Sunday but was back on the ice for an optional morning skate Monday. He said he does not think he will be limited in any way against the Coyotes.

"It's just a matter of making sure nothing with the heart and once the heart is cleared you're clear," Hansen said. "They did thorough checks and made sure everything is OK. They are not going to let a guy back on the ice unless you are cleared and ready for it."

Despite jokes about teammates not wanting to give him mouth to mouth on the bench, Hansen knows how scary his collapse looked and was glad his wife was not watching the game on television.

"She said, 'Why are you calling me? You are supposed to be playing,'" Hansen said. "I told her, 'Don't watch it, just turn the TV off,' and I'll explain when I get home. Later she came to the hospital and I filled her in. It looks obviously not very good on TV and it's not very nice happening either. But it's easier to tell her once everything is OK."

Hansen and his family were glad to see how quickly the medical staff responded to his situation, especially in the wake of Dallas Stars forward Rich Peverley collapsing on the bench because of a cardiac event during the first period of a game against the Columbus Blue Jackets on March 10 last season.

"We all know the situation that could have happened," he said. "It happened last year, so it's nice to know they are aware and so quick to respond. It gives us a lot of comfort and I know my wife is extremely happy to see how quick the response is."

Here are the projected lineups:


Mikkel Boedker - Antoine Vermette - Shane Doan

Tobias Rieder - Martin Hanzal - Sam Gagner

Martin Erat - Joe Vitale - B.J. Crombeen

Brandon McMillan - Kyle Chipchura - David Moss

Oliver Ekman-Larsson - Zbynek Michalek

Keith Yandle - David Schlemko

Michael Stone - Chris Summers

Mike Smith

Devan Dubnyk

Scratched: Connor Murphy, Alexandre Bolduc

Injured: Brandon Gormley (lower body), Lauri Korpikoski (lower body)


Daniel Sedin - Henrik Sedin - Radim Vrbata

Chris Higgins - Nick Bonino - Alexandre Burrows

Shawn Matthias - Brad Richardson - Linden Vey

Tom Sestito - Bo Horvat - Derek Dorsett

Alexander Edler - Christopher Tanev

Luca Sbisa - Yannick Weber

Ryan Stanton - Kevin Bieksa

Ryan Miller

Eddie Lack

Scratched: Alex Biega

Injured: Jannik Hansen (upper body), Zack Kassian (finger), Dan Hamhuis (lower body)

Status report: Smith gets his first start since Dec. 11 after watching Dubnyk play well the past three games. Dubnyk has a .919 save percentage in 13 games; Smith’s .889 save percentage is last among 42 qualifying goaltenders. But with another road game against the Edmonton Oilers on Tuesday, coach Dave Tippett said it was time to get Smith back in goal. Smith said he has to be aggressive handling the puck but patient stopping it. "Just not to try and get it all back in one game," Smith said. "It's easy to go out there and try to do too much and get it back in one night. But realistically it's going to happen over a period of time. … When you go through tough times you always come out of if learning from it and being better because of it and I believe in that and because of this little lull in my game I think I will be better because of it." … Tippett said Korpikoski, who will miss his third game because of a lower-body injury, should be ready to return against Edmonton. … Stone, who missed the game Saturday because of an upper-body injury, is questionable against the Canucks. … Gormley, out since Nov. 16 because of a lower-body injury, recently returned from a conditioning stint in the American Hockey League and could return against the Oilers on Tuesday.

Who's hot: Hanzal had a hat trick, including two goals in nine seconds, for the Coyotes against the Canucks on Nov. 14, but went 10 games without a goal after that until scoring in a 4-2 loss to the Los Angeles Kings on Saturday.

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