Posted April 06, 2013 on
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Despite the Calgary Flames' dismal play on the road, the Vancouver Canucks won't take anything for granted.
With at least two key players possibly ready to return from injuries, the Northwest Division-leading Canucks look to match a season high with their fifth straight home win while trying to extend the longest road slide in Flames' history Saturday night.
Vancouver (20-11-6) took a two-point division lead over Minnesota by avoiding a third straight overall loss with Thursday's 4-0 victory over Edmonton. Cory Schneider made 23 saves, Henrik Sedin had a goal and an assist, and recently acquired forward Derek Roy added an assist in his team debut.
The Canucks own a 12-3 scoring advantage during their four-game home winning streak. But they know they can't afford to let down their guard against a Calgary squad that's mired in a franchise-worst 0-11-1 road stretch dating to a 4-3 win at Dallas on Feb. 17.
"They have a proud group of individuals," Vancouver coach Alain Vigneault said. "Calgary is going to come in here and try to put (its) best game on the ice and we are going to have to be ready."
The Canucks won the first two meetings this season - both at home - but fell 4-2 at Calgary (13-19-4) on March 3.
Vigneault seems to feel confident that forwards Mason Raymond and Dale Weise can return from their injuries Friday. Raymond, fifth on the team with 18 points, has missed two games with an upper-body injury while Weise has sat the last six with a bad shoulder.
Raymond had a goal and an assist in the two home contests versus Calgary this season.
Star center Ryan Kesler has been limited to seven games with Vancouver because of a broken foot, but also appears close to returning.
"Right now there's a possibility we're going to have a couple of guys back. We need them," Vigneault said. "We're like any other team, we need our players to be healthy and help us win games."
Sedin had a goal and an assist in each of the last two home games, and has three assists overall against the Flames in 2013.
Coming off his fourth shutout, Schneider has allowed three goals on 107 shots during the last four home contests. He's stopped 67 of 70 shots in both meetings this season versus Calgary at Rogers Arena.
The Flames allowed a tiebreaking goal with a 2:06 left in the third period of Friday's 2-1 loss at streaking San Jose to extend their road woes.
On the bright side, Miikka Kiprusoff made a season-high 39 saves and Mikael Backlund opened the scoring with a power-play goal for Calgary. The team has just three goals in four road contests, but was more competitive after giving up 18 while losing the previous three overall.
"(The Sharks) did a good job creating offense like they usually do and ultimately cashed in on it," said Flames forward Michael Cammalleri, who had an assist. "We have to work more on playing in their end instead of ours."
Losers of eight of 10, the Flames continue to fall further out of postseason contention. They're now 12 points back of St. Louis for the final playoff spot in the Western Conference.
Backlund has scored four of his 21 career goals in his last six games versus Vancouver.
BEST OF MAXIM
AROUND THE WEB
The Green Men, a.k.a. Force and Sully, returned to the Rogers Arena for Thursday night's Vancouver Canucks game against the Edmonton Oilers, and they came especially prepared for Oilers left winger Taylor Hall.
When Hall received a hooking penalty halfway through the first period, the Green Men played a game of "Pin the Tail On the Donkey", holding a picture of a...
Canucks take down the Oilers 4-0 on Kids Telethon Day
Cory Schneider made 23 saves for his eighth career shutout and fourth of the season while Henrk Sedin recorded a goal and an assist as Vancouver blanked visiting Edmonton.
Newcomer Derek Roy logged 17:54 of ice time and was one of the 3 stars.
Here's the Boxscore - http://nwsb.co/9mug4
+ NWSB Game Recap - http...
Canucks put out the Flames 5-2
Captain Henrik Sedin recorded a goal and two assists while Alex Burrows added one of each as Vancouver extended Calgary's road winless streak to 13 games (0-12-1).
Henrik Sedin's first assist of the night was the 600th of his career.
Here's the Boxscore - http://nwsb.co/7whqa
+ NWSB Game Recap - http://nwsb.co/r1nqp
Canucks For Kids Telethon
NWSportsbeat.com has pledged to donate $10 tonight for every Vancouver Canucks goal scored. It's 1-0 after the first period. We're sincerely hoping for a blowout to help out this great cause.
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Hockey Night in Canada Vancouver Hosts Calgary
A 7pm start at Rogers Arena on Saturday night against a reeling Flames team. Sounds like the perfect recipe for a fragile Canucks team looking to make the push towards the Stanley Cup Playoffs.
The Nucks 4-0 win against the Oilers on Thursday moved Van City back into first place in the Northwest Division.
While in attendence, Pavel Bure was honored at Rogers Arena during the Canucks/Oilers game and received a standing ovation from the crowd.
This literally brought a tear to my eye. One of my favorite ALL-TIME Vancouver Canucks, the Russian Rocket Bure.
With the goaltending future in Calgary a big question mark, the Calgary Flames have signed goalie Laurent Brossoit to a three year entry level contract. Brossoit was selected by the Flames in the sixth round, 164th overall, of the 2011 NHL draft. After helping his junior team, the Edmonton Oil Kings, reach the second round of the [...]
The Canucks' top line combined for eight points, and Cory Schneider made 36 saves as Vancouver beat the reeling Calgary Flames 5-2 on Saturday night.
Henrik Sedin scored an empty-net goal and earned career NHL assists No. 600 and 601, Daniel Sedin added three assists, and Alex Burrows scored and had an assist to pace Vancouver (21-11-6), which has won eight of 10.
Cory Schneider made 23 saves and Henrik Sedin had a goal and an assist for Vancouver in a 4-0 victory over the Edmonton Oilers on Thursday night that moved the Canucks past Minnesota for first in the Northwest Division.
Schneider, making his ninth consecutive start, had to make just 12 saves through 40 minutes, but stopped 11 in the third for his fourth shutout of the season and...