After a disappointing third period against the Calgary Flames, the Nashville Predators look to come back with a win against the Vancouver Canucks tonight. The Preds struggled, giving up three goals in the third, falling to the Calgary Flames for the 2nd time this season 4-3. Tonight, the Preds will take on the Vancouver Canucks for the first time this season. The two teams will play each other three times during 2014-15. The next two matchups will be on January 13th and March 31st, both at Bridgestone Arena.
The Vancouver Canucks (8-3-0 16 points) are seeing production out of their two stars, Henrik and Daniel Sedin. The Sedin twins have amassed 24 points together with excellent work on the Powerplay. Vancouver is currently ranked 7th in the NHL on the PP at 22%.
The Canucks defeated the Edmonton Oilers in their last outing on Sarurday night 3-2. Derek Dorsett was able to score the winning goal short handed during 4:05 minute of the 3rd period. LW Linden Vey is ranked 6th in the NHL in Shooting % and tied for 7th with 3 PPG. The Canucks are playing without Alexandre Burrows who is serving a 3 game suspension.
Keys to watch
Ribeiro hot versus Vancouver
Look for Mike Ribeiro to continue his domination against Vancouver. In 35 career games versus the Canucks, the Montreal, Quebec native has 23 points. Ribeiro is currently tied with Filip Forsberg with 8 points. With this being noted, look for Ribeiro to continue positive play against the Canucks.
Struggles at Rogers Arena
In Vancouver, the Preds have struggled against the Canucks. In 29 games versus Vancouver, the Preds have only won 10 games. Last year, they were able to split the two played at Rogers Arena, but lost the season series 1-2-0. In the history of these two franchises, the Canucks lead the series 21-31-(3)-4 against the Preds.
Sunday afternoon, Anton Volchenkov was suspended by the NHL’s Office of Player Safety due to a hit in Friday’s game against the Flames’ F Michael Ferland. Here is the video of the explanation of the suspension and prior history of Volchenkov:
This will effect the rotation of the defensemen of the Preds in a significant way. Victor Bartley will see his first action of the year. With a lackluster PK over the past few games, Volchenkov’s suspension will cause an even greater struggle on the PK. Bartley will be paired with Mattias Ekholm. Bartley struggled at the end of last season and during the preseason. The Preds will need solid play from him during this extended absence of Volchenkov.
The Preds will look to make the halfway point of this road trip a success with a win. You can watch the team from Vancouver on FS-TN or listen on 102.5 The Game.