Game 41: Canucks vs. Flyers (12.30.13)
Having a week off for the holidays clearly hasn't dulled the Canucks' ability to earn victories as Vancouver picked up right where they left off last night with a 2-0 win over the Flames. Unfortunately, the time off hasn't allowed them to shake off the injury bug as the Canucks suffered yet another blow to their already-depleted lineup losing defenceman Andrew Alberts with a suspected head injury. With just five healthy blue-liners at their disposal, the Canucks have called up Frank Corrado from Utica (AHL) to fill the void. Corrado is expected to make his season debut tonight for Vancouver as they look to run their win streak to four games.
The Flyers haven't had many injury concerns to deal with lately and it's a big reason why they've been on quite a roll. They come into tonight's contest having won five of their last seven outings. Winning on the road has been a bit of a struggle for them this season although they did snap a five-game road winless skid with a 4-3 shootout win in their last outing on Saturday. This is the second and final meeting between the Canucks and Flyers this season. The Canucks won 3-2 back on October 15 in Philadelphia thanks to a two-goal game by Ryan Kesler. Eddie Lack is expected to get the call for the Canucks between the pipes again while the Flyers will likely counter with Steve Mason.
Puck drop at 7 pm PT - Live on Sportsnet Pacific, The TEAM 1040, or online at teamradio.ca.
Keys to the Game
Expect an up-tempo game. A game against a non-Conference opponent is more likely to produce some open hockey. The Flyers have been on a bit of a roll lately when it comes to scoring goals so the Canucks will have to find a way to fight fire with fire.
Kesler goes Beastmode. There's always a buzz whenever Kesler lines up against the team he nearly joined a few years back. Kesler was instrumental in Vancouver's win over Philadelphia earlier this season scoring a pair of goals and the Canucks would love to have a repeat performance from him tonight.
Voracek and Giroux keep dominating. There has been no stopping Jakub Voracek and Claude Giroux lately. The pair comprises two-thirds of the Flyers' top line and, over their last nine outings, has a combined for a whopping 11 goals and 30 points.
By the Numbers
Years since the Flyers last visit to Vancouver – a 6-2 Canucks win on Dec. 28, 2010.
Years to the day the Flyers last won in Vancouver - 3-2 on Dec. 30, 2008.
Straight games the Canucks have been held to two-or-fewer goals.
Straight games the Flyers have scored three-or-more goals in.
Different defencemen to dress for the Canucks this season. Frank Corrado is expected to be the 9th.
Consecutive playing time without a goal allowed by the Canucks.