Canucks at Ducks and Awkward Rhyming Words: A Preview

Burrows will do anything to offend you - Stephen Dunn

I don't like the shade of blue of the Canucks' uniforms. The Ducks better avenge my dislike!

The Anaheim Ducks are coming off a home win against the Buffalo Sabres, bringing them to 7-0-0 at home on the year. The Vancouver Canucks are coming off a game against the Los Angeles Kings, which due to LA being an awful place to live, doesn’t start until later and therefore doesn’t end before this is due to the site. (Actually, the game starts at a respectful 7pm so Canada can watch it without the horror of waiting an extra 30 minutes. But I like that sentence, so I'm not deleting it.) I don’t know won't know if they are coming into our game with a win or a loss. But before they played the Kings, the Nucks played the San Jose Sharks and beat them pretty soundly after putting up a three-spot in the first period.

The Canucks play a pretty different style game than they used to, thanks to the hiring of John Tortorella. All accounts I’ve read say the team has bought into his system and are playing it well, which explains their success. This will be a good game if the Ducks show up to defend home ice the way they have the previous two games.

Keys to the Game: The only Canucks game I have seen this season was against the Leafs, which doesn’t really count, because the Leafs are god-awful to watch, win-or-lose. Every team looks sensational against them, including the Devils the other night. They are also awful to watch. (This is an Eastern Conference thing.) It wasn’t a measure-stick sort of game.

The main threats we’ve seen in Vancouver are still the main threats, regardless of system. Daniel Sedin, Henrik Sedin, and Ryan Kesler are the team’s primary points-getters. Mike Santorelli and Chris Higgins are the team’s non-Sedins/Kesler scorers. Shutting those players down, no matter how they’re deployed, will be a goal of the game. One thing to note: Torts has split the Sedins up fairly regularly during the young season. They do well together and apart, which spreads the offense.

What Can We Learn From this Game: I am excited to see the clash of styles this game will offer up. Bruce Boudreau, as we know, is a free-wheelin’ pizza pie eating machine. Tortorella is a pretty strategic thinker, or pretty much the anti-Gabby. I’m sure there’s somewhere I could look to grab their head-to-head record, but I’m pretty lazy.

Needless to say, the Canucks have the skill and speed to hang with the Ducks. But if it comes to trading chances, I think the Ducks have a bit more scoring depth on hand. Whether Vancouver chooses to play that game or tries to slow it down really depends. If they do slow it down, can the Ducks play that style of game? Guys like Luca Sbisa and Bryan Allen actually play pretty well against dump-in systems, and if the Nucks want to keep the pucks away from the Ducks, it may come to that.

Fearless Prediction: The Canucks have Brad Richardson on the roster. You know who hates him? Teemu Selanne, our middle-weight thug. WILL THESE TWO REPEAT THEIR LAST EPIC FIGHT IN THIS GAME? PROBABLY NOT!

 

Stay tuned here for updates throughout the day (lineup news, etc.) and start commenting. We'll have a quick stats pack shortly before puck drop for the in-game comments to flow.

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