Inside The Game: Canucks play host to Wild

 

 
 
 
 
Vancouver Canucks Roberto Luongo makes the save on Edmonton Oilers Jordan Eberle.
 

Vancouver Canucks Roberto Luongo makes the save on Edmonton Oilers Jordan Eberle.

Photograph by: Jason Franson, THE CANADIAN PRESS

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THREE THEMES

CAN LOU NET ANOTHER? Roberto Luongo may experience one nightmare after another in Minny but at home he has tamed the Wild with three consecutive shutouts, two last season and one in Game 81 of the 2010-11 campaign. All five of his starts this season have been strong and he lauded his teammates Monday for not surrendering many odd-man rushes. Noted Luongo: “We're not giving up much.”

WILL NEW LOOK LAST? The Canucks practised Monday with the same power-play units that were unveiled in Saturday's 5-1 triumph over the Flames. Daniel Sedin was again on the point alongside Alex Edler with the first group while Henrik Sedin skated up front with Alex Burrows and rookie Jordan Schroeder. The second group featured Dan Hamhuis and Kevin Bieksa on the points with Mason Raymond, Zack Kassian and Jannik Hansen up front. Jason Garrison, signed for his big shot (among other reasons), was not on either unit. Said coach Alain Vigneault: “Whether we're using him right now on the power play is, in my opinion, not that big of an issue. He's done everything we wanted.”

DIVISION DOMINATION: The Canucks are 5-0-1 against Northwest division foes this season, including a 4-1 spanking of the Wild last Thursday in Minnesota. This marks their fourth straight game against Northwest teams and a chance to pull further ahead of the pack in the Western Conference's lamest division. The Wild should be tired, too. This will be their third game in four nights in three different cities and three different time zones. They played Monday night in Calgary. Time to put down the hammer.

PLAYERS TO WATCH

HENRIK SEDIN, CANUCKS

All eyes will be on Henrik, who needs one point to tie Markus Naslund and two to set a new franchise mark for regular-season points in a career. Naslund put up 756 during his 884 games in a Canuck sweater. Henrik will be appearing in his 904th outing.

ZACH PARISE, WILD

Assuming he emerges unscatched from Monday night's game in Calgary, Parise is always worth watching. He had eight shots and three hits against the Canucks last Thursday in 20:53 of ice time, which was actually below his season average of 21:25.

 
 
 
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Vancouver Canucks Roberto Luongo makes the save on Edmonton Oilers Jordan Eberle.
 

Vancouver Canucks Roberto Luongo makes the save on Edmonton Oilers Jordan Eberle.

Photograph by: Jason Franson, THE CANADIAN PRESS

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
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