Canucks vs. Bruins
|Boston at Vancouver|
|TV: Sportsnet; RADIO: CKNW|
GAME: Boston Bruins (10-13-5) at Vancouver Canucks (16-9-2).
TIME: Sunday, 7pm PST.
The slumping Vancouver Canucks should be happy to be home.
Coming off their fourth straight road loss, the Canucks return to the friendly confines of GM Place as they take on the Boston Bruins.
The Canucks, who have dropped three of their last four games overall, boast an 11-1-0 home record. On Thursday, however, Vancouver dropped to 5-8-2 away from home with a 5-3 loss at Edmonton.
"It's definitely something we need to work on -- our road record," Canucks winger Josh Green said. "You have to be good on the road. We have to get better."
The Canucks have won four straight at home since their only loss at GM Place this season, a 5-3 setback to Colorado on Nov. 10.
"It's the mental breakdowns," said Vancouver center Brendan Morrison.
The last-place Bruins are 2-0 since trading captain Joe Thornton to the San Jose Sharks on Wednesday. After a surprising 3-0 win over the league-best Ottawa Senators on Thursday, the Bruins came back from a three-goal deficit to beat the Oilers 4-3 in overtime on Saturday.
The Bruins had dropped nine of 10 before Thursday's win.
In Saturday's victory, David Tanabe scored his first goal of the season with 30 seconds left in overtime. Brad Boyes had a career-high two goals for Boston, which unloaded Thornton in a blockbuster deal for Brad Stuart, Marco Sturm and Wayne Primeau.
This is the first of six straight games against Western Conference opponents for the Bruins, who take on Vancouver, Colorado, Phoenix, Minnesota and Toronto twice before visiting Eastern Conference rival Washington on Nov. 27.
STANDINGS (through Dec. 3): Bruins - 25 points, 5th place, 15 PB, Northeast Division. Canucks - 34 points, 2nd place, 1 PB, Northwest Division.
TEAM LEADERS: Bruins - Glen Murray and Sergei Samsonov, 12 goals; Samsonov, 13 assists and 25 points; Andrew Alberts, 43 PIM. Canucks - Markus Naslund, 15 goals, 17 assists and 32 points; Wade Brookbank, 63 PIM.
SPECIAL TEAMS (through Dec. 2): Bruins - Power play: 18.8 percent (30 for 159), 9th in NHL. Penalty killing: 84.3 percent (146 for 173), 10th. Canucks - Power play: 17.3 percent (31 for 179), 17th. Penalty killing: 82.5 percent (132 for 160), 14th.
GOALTENDERS: Bruins - Andrew Raycroft (4-11-2, 0 SO, 3.43 GAA); Hannu Toivonen (6-2-3, 1, 3.01). Canucks - Dan Cloutier (8-3-1, 0, 3.17); Alex Auld (8-6-1, 0, 2.70).
2003-04 SEASON SERIES: Bruins, 1-0.
LAST MEETING: Nov. 15, 2003. Bruins, 2-1 (OT). At Boston, Brian Rolston scored with 44.9 seconds left in overtime as the Bruins pulled out the win despite outstanding goaltending by Cloutier, who made 37 saves.
ROAD/HOME RECORDS: Bruins - 5-7-4 on the road; Canucks - 11-1-0 at home.