The center of the universe comes to Vancouver; Canucks host Maple Leafs
It won't be just another game for the Canucks tonight. Tonight, the boys from Van city take on Brian Burke's Toronto Maple Leafs, a game so hyped here in vancouver, you would think the leafs actually had a competitive team!
Obviously that isn't correct, but I don't need to tell you that.
The game goes down at 4 pm pt at Rogers Arena.
Burke was the GM of the Canucks from 1998-2004. He was in Vancouver last week as part of Markus Naslunds jersey retirement ceremony, but lets move on to the actual players of the game.
Ryan Kesler will look to continue his hot streak, as he had a hat trick, the first of his career, against the Columbus Blue Jackets in the Canucks previous game. Kesler has been the most dominant Canuck on the ice the last few games, and is getting rewarded.
The Sedin twins and Alex Burrows were quiet last game, and will look to rebound with a strong game. The twins are usually quite good against Eastern conference teams, and tonight should be no exception.
Jeff Tambellini, once the toast of the town, has gone through a bit of a slump. He's gone pointless in his last three games, while linemate Mikael Samuelsson has only 2 points in his last five. Simply put, Kesler has been carrying this line, and they had better start helping him out.
Roberto Luongo will get the start for the Nucks, and he has been solid the last few games. He has been positionally sound, and isn`t letting many weak goals slip through. Could this be the start of a famous Roberto Luongo hot streak?
For the Maple Leafs, it will be Jonas Gustavsson, as J.S. Giguere has strained his groin muscle and will be out at least 2 games.
The Canucks may get a huge boost to their blueline, as Christian Ehrhoff may return to the lineup. Keith Ballard really stepped up in his absence, and a D core that has Ehrhoff healthy and Ballard playing at his best is tantalizing to say the least.
The Maple Leafs will continue to lean on Phil Kessel for production, although the burden may be too heavy for him to carry alone. Thats why players like Mikhail Grabovski have been stepping up. He has 5 goals in his last six games. Kris Versteeg also has 4 points in 3 games.
Canucks: Sami Salo (achilles), Rick Rypien (personal leave), Mason Raymond (thumb).
Maple Leafs: Mike Komisarek (finger), Mike Brown (finger), Jay Rosehill (nose).
Lets face it kiddies, this is a game the canucks should win. However, should means absolutely bupkus in the NHL. Let's see who wants this game more.
Lastly: Why can't there be an NHL team in Hamilton? Because then Toronto would want one!