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Tale of the Tape: Canucks vs. Oilers (1.20.13)

Sunday, 20.01.2013 / 12:00 PM / Features
By Daniel Fung
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Tale of the Tape: Canucks vs. Oilers (1.20.13)


Tonight’s game is presented by Charter Bus Lines of British Columbia.

Team Record: 0-1-0
Last Game: 3-7 L vs Anaheim (JAN.19.13)

Season Series: 0-0-0
Last Meeting: 3-0 W (APR.07.12)
Team Record: 0-0-0
Last Game: 0-3 L at Vancouver (APR.07.12)

Season Series: 0-0-0
Last Meeting: 0-3 L (APR.07.12)

THE SET-UP

Less than 24 hours after turning in a dismal opening night performance against the Ducks, the Canucks (0-1-0) will look for a bounce back effort tonight when they welcome the high-flying Oilers (0-0-0) to Rogers Arena.

WHAT YOU NEED TO KNOW

  • The Canucks are looking to avoid losing consecutive games to open a season since they dropped three in a row to back in 2009.10.
  • The seven goals the Canucks surrendered last night is the most they've given up in a single game since Game 3 of the 2011 Stanley Cup Final – an 8-1 loss to the Bruins. The most they gave up in a single game last year was six goals.
  • The Canucks won four of the six meetings (4-2-0) in the season series against the Oilers last year, including all three games played at Rogers Arena.
  • Alex Burrows led all players in the season series with eight points (3-5-8) versus Edmonton last year. He recorded at least one point in all six of the head-to-head meetings against the Oilers.
  • Jordan Eberle and Taylor Hall led the Oilers in scoring against the Canucks last season. Both players had two goals and four assists each.
  • Robert Luongo, who could start in net for Vancouver tonight, blanked the Oilers 3-0 in the last meeting between the clubs. He also chipped in with a power play assist in what was the regular season finale for both teams last year.
  • The Canucks were 7-4-0 last season when playing on zero days rest.
  • Edmonton has won two straight season openers but is winless in their last two road openers (0-1-1).
  • Ralph Krueger makes his official NHL head coaching debut tonight. He served a few games as Edmonton's interim head coach last season when former bench boss Tom Renney was sidelined with a concussion. He is best known for his time spent as coach of the Swiss national team.
  • The Oilers would love a repeat of their start from last season. They went 8-2-2 out of the gate before falling back down to earth and ultimately finishing 29th in the overall league standings out of 30 teams.

FOLLOW THE ACTION

Tonight's game faces off at 6 pm PT and can be seen on Rogers Sportsnet Pacific. Listen live on The TEAM 1040 Sports Radio or online at teamradio.ca.

Those away from a TV or radio can follow @CanucksGame on Twitter for live in-game play-by-play.

THE CANUCKS WIN IF...


  • They score first. The team that opened the scoring in last year's season series went a perfect 6-0. Vancouver happened to do that on five occasions. An early lead would also help fight off fatigue.
  • They make it tough physically on Edmonton's youngsters. Pounding the Oilers' young guns early and often might make them shy away from the scoring areas. They may especially want to make sure that Yakupov and Schultz have a particularly rude welcoming to the NHL.
  • Get some power play success. The man-advantage was one of the few bright spots last night as the Canucks scored twice on four opportunities. Last season, they were 13-3-0 in games where they tallied two-or-more power play goals.


THE OILERS WIN IF...


  • Push the tempo early. The Canucks will be the tired team having played last night and being forced to play catch-up all night and getting them running around early will bode well for the Oilers, particularly as the game wears on.
  • They get some production from the back end. Edmonton blue-liners combined for just seven assists versus Vancouver last season, five of those from Corey Potter. That should be different this year with the addition of Justin Schultz.
  • Devan Dubnyk steps up. The Oilers' netminder, who heads into the season as their undisputed number one between the pipes, struggled against the Canucks last year going 0-3-1 while allowing 12 goals on 117 shots faced for a 3.22 GAA and .897 save percentage.

ALEX EDLER

Alex Edler made plenty of positive headlines on Friday when it was announced he had agreed to a contract extension with the Canucks that will take him through the 2018.19 season. He was also one of the few Canucks that had any positive to speak of after yesterday's drubbing at the hands of the Ducks.

The 26-year-old defenseman gave Canucks fans hopefully a sign of things to come from him personally by netting a goal and adding a helper in the loss to the Ducks. Last season, Edler didn't find the back of the net until the 11th game of the season.

Edler had two assists in six games versus the Oilers last season and has 17 points (3-14-17) in 30 career games against Edmonton overall.

JUSTIN SCHULTZ

When Justin Schultz steps onto Rogers Arena ice to make his NHL debut tonight, there will be a handful of Canucks fans that will look upon him and see him as the one that got away. The highly sought-after rookie blue-liner reportedly came down to the Canucks and Oilers before ultimately signing in the Alberta capital.

Originally a second-round pick of the Ducks (43rd overall) in 2008, Schultz's play this year in the AHL with the OKC Barons has left Edmonton fans eagerly anticipating seeing him finally wearing an Oilers sweater. At the time the lockout ended, Schultz was the second-leading scorer in the AHL – behind only teammate Jordan Eberle – with 18 goals and 48 points in just 34 games played.

Schultz played Junior "A" with the BCHL's Westside Warriors before moving onto the University of Wisconsin where he starred for the Badgers for the past three years prior to turning pro.

Game Notes on Canucks.com are written by Daniel Fung. Follow him on Twitter @daniel_fung or e-mail him at dfung_sports@hotmail.com.

CANUCKS LEADING SCORERS

2012.13 Regular Season

Player GP G A P +/-
Alexander Edler
1 1 1 2 -1
Daniel Sedin
1 1 1 2 -1
Jannik Hansen
1 0 2 2 0
Chris Higgins
1 0 1 1 0
Henrik Sedin
1 0 1 1 -1
OILERS LEADING SCORERS

2011.12 Regular Season

Player GP G A P +/-
Jordan Eberle
78 34 42 76 4
Taylor Hall
61 27 26 53 -3
Ryan Nugent-Hopkins
62 18 34 52 -2
Sam Gagner
75 18 29 47 5
Ryan Smyth
82 19 27 46 -5
IN THE INFIRMARY

For the Canucks...

F Ryan Kesler (shoulder/wrist surgery) and F David Booth (strained groin) are on the injured reserve list.

For the Oilers...

G Nikolai Khabibulin (groin) and D Theo Peckham (hip flexor) are day-to-day. F Ryan Jones (eye) and D Andy Sutton (knee) are out.

BY THE NUMBERS

4 – Wins needed for Coach V to reach 400 career NHL victories.

9 – Points needed for Henrik Sedin (748) to surpass Markus Naslund (756) as the franchise's leading point scorer.

12 – Former first round picks on Edmonton's active roster, including three former first overall selections.

212th – All-time meeting between the Canucks and Oilers. Vancouver trails the all-time series 85-99-27.

408 – Straight sellouts for Canucks hockey at Rogers Arena entering tonight's game. The streak dates back November 14, 2002 and includes 362 regular season games and 46 playoff games.

THE TWEET STUFF

@hosea24hours

- Where's Joe Cannata?! #canucks

@RobTheHockeyGuy

- "Not as easy as it looks eh kid?" –Luongo to Schneider (probably)

@EdmontonOilers

- "It’s going to be great. I've got a lot of family and friends coming to the game." – BC native J-Schultz on starting @NHL career in #yvr

DID YOU KNOW?

The Oilers are only the second team in NHL history to have selected in the first overall position at the NHL Entry Draft for three consecutive years after nabbing Nail Yakupov with the first pick this past summer. The only other team to select first overall in three straight years was the Quebec Nordiques from 1989 to 1991.

The Nordiques eventually moved to Colorado to become the Avalanche and won a Stanley Cup in their first year there in 1996. By that point, however, all three of those first overall picks – Mats Sundin, Owen Nolan and Eric Lindros – had already departed from the organization. Nolan was the only one of the three to play for the Avalanche while Lindros never suited up for that franchise at all.