Originally written on NorthWest Sports Beat  |  Last updated 9/24/14
What better time to get on a roll? The Vancouver Canucks (11-6-4) are at home tonight playing host to the struggling San Jose Sharks (10-6-4). The Canucks are coming off a 4-2 loss against the Flames in Calgary on Sunday, while the Sharks beat the Nashville Predators on Saturday for just their third win in ten games. The Canucks are off on a three game road trip after tonight’s game that sees them play in Columbus twice and once in Minnesota. Gotta love these condensed season schedules. Kicking off a road trip with a big win at home. Since February 14th, the Canucks are 1-2-1 at home. With the team leaving on a three game road trip after tonight’s game against the Sharks, a big win is key to the Canucks taking a winning attitude and carrying it over on the road for the next three games. Cory Schneider will get the start in goal. Keith Ballard who has been a healthy scratch for the last two games has found his way back into the lineup taking over for Andrew Alberts. What the Canucks need to do to win: Win the game at even strength and don’t take the bait. The Canucks power play hasn’t been given many opportunities over the last few games, even still it, when they’ve had the man advantage they haven’t capitalized on the chances they have had. The Canucks need to focus on winning this game at full strength tonight. The Canucks will need to avoid another gong show of a game The last time these two teams played there were penalties issued before the puck was even dropped. The Canucks need to maintain a level head and not get sucked into any between the whistle shenanigans with the Sharks. Ryan Clowe had almost as many penalty minutes as there were minutes played. The Canucks will need to avoid another gong show of a game against the Sharks if they hope to win. Get on the Sharks early Get the Sharks the way they got the Canucks earlier this season. The Canucks need to score early and often and take the life out of the Sharks before they have a chance to get their legs going. San Jose has struggled in their last ten games (3-4-3) but that’s no reason to underestimate them. If Vancouver can convert early it will make it increasingly harder for the Sharks to stand a chance at coming back. Score some goals On Saturday night against the defending Stanley Cup Champion Los Angeles Kings, the Canucks, for the third time this season, scored five goals in a game. The Canucks need bigger games from everyone and it starts at the top. If the Twins get going then it causes the trickle down effect. While it’s been nice to see Jannik Hansen and Chris Higgins starting to put up points, it would be nice if there was a consistent flow of goals from the top six. If the Canucks can win the game at even strength, stay away from the between the whistles game, get on the Sharks with a few early goals and continue to pop a few in the net, they should have no problem defeating the struggling San Jose Sharks. CLICK HERE TO CHECK OUT THE CANUCKS BLOG IN THE CLUBHOUSE TODAY!
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