Originally written on NorthWest Sports Beat  |  Last updated 1/30/13
Just What the Doctor Ordered The Canucks started their California swing well, but the effort levels were maddeningly inconsistent in losses to the Sharks and Kings. Cue a home game against Colorado, a guaranteed slump buster. Matchup: Vancouver Canucks (2-2-2) v Colorado Avalanche (2-3-0) Venue: Rogers Arena Time: 7:00 pm TV/Radio: Sportsnet, Team 1040 Game Notes Let’s review the eight-ball the Avalanche are under. They don’t have Ryan O’Reilly, they don’t have Gabriel Landeskog, they don’t have Steve Downie. They do have Joe Sacco behind the bench, he of the 25-42-6 record in the Northwest since taking over the Avs. It’s part a larger trend where the Canucks have taken at least a point in 18 straight games against Colorado and one the last seven meetings at Rogers Arena. I like those odds. What to Watch: Colorado The Avalanche also hold one of the few power plays currently worse than Vancouver’s. They’ve converted just one of fifteen chances so far, while their penalty kill has been giving goals away like Oprah. Cue a home game against Colorado, a guaranteed slump buster. There’s a chance Landeskog could play if he’s cleared and recovered from his massive hit he took Saturday night, but most likely the young captain will be forced to the press box. Offseason signing PA Parenteau is one of the lone bright spots, leading the team in goals with three. Line-up Chuck Kobasew-Matt Duchene-PA Parenteau Jamie McGinn-Paul Statsny-David Jones Cody McLeod-John Mitchell-Milan Hejduk Patrick Bordeleau-Mark Olver-Mike Sgarbossa Erik Johnson-Ryan Wilson Ryan O’Byrne-Jan Hejda Greg Zanon-Tyson Barrie Semyon Varlamov What to Watch: Vancouver It’s yet another chance to redeem blowing a two goal lead in the previous game. The powerplay is now 0 for its last 10, frustrating especially when Friday’s blowout win over the Ducks was propelled by powerplay markers. Still, as Jason Botchford points out, these slow starts are nothing new for Alain Vigneault and the Vancouver Canucks. There’s still a lot of hockey left and the standings in both conferences still look randomized. Let’s all never forget the Minnesota Wild were the best team in the league until December last year. Line-up Daniel Sedin – Henrik Sedin – Zack Kassian Chris Higgins – Alex Burrows - Jannik Hansen Mason Raymond – Jordan Schroeder – Dale Weise Aaron Volpatti – Manny Malhotra – Maxim Lapierre Dan Hamhuis – Kevin Bieksa Jason Garrison – Alex Edler Keith Ballard – Chris Tanev Cory Schneider Injuries Vancouver – Ryan Kesler and David Booth are still hunting popcorn in the pressbox for at least a few more weeks. Maxim Lapierre is probably playing with a groin strain he picked up in practice late last week, considering how horrible he looked in the California long weekend. Colorado – Sharks defenceman Brad Staurt decimated Gabriel Landeskog on Saturday, sending the young captain into the pressbox with head and leg injuries. Steve Downie is out for the year with a torn ACL, while Ryan O’Reilly is still negotiating a new contract while playing in Russia. Prediction A nice cleansing home win. 4-2 Canucks. We all go home happy. Gameday Tweets The #Avalanche have not beaten the #Canucks in regulation time in 3 years. Colorado lost all six meetings last year vs. VanCity. — Q Smith (@NWSBQ) January 30, 2013 Bieksa – “We skated a lot together during the lockout, developed some chemistry and will be fine tonight.” #Canucks — Sportsnet Pacific (@SNETPacific) January 30, 2013 Looks like Luongo gets start for #canucks — Dan Murphy (@sportsnetmurph) January 30, 2013 It’s the #Canucks vs. Avalanche tonight in @rogersarena. 7:00PM on Sportsnet. Tale of the Tape: v.canucks.com/14rYjNd — Vancouver Canucks (@VanCanucks) January 30, 2013 New Post Up! Colorado Avalanche vs. Canucks betting odds and handicapping preview – #Vancouver #Canucks #Avalanche nwsb.co/hixuk — Northwest SportsBeat (@NWSportsBeat) January 30, 2013 CLICK HERE CHECK OUT THE VANCOUVER CANUCKS CLUBHOUSE TODAY ON NWSB!
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