Vancouver Canucks centre Bo Horvat and defenceman Dan Hamhuis are ready to play in tonight’s match-up against the Minnesota Wild.
When Vancouver Canucks forward Bo Horvat missed Sunday’s practice after taking a shot to the foot in Saturday’s game against the Toronto Maple Leafs, Nucks Nation got scared rather quickly. Another injury? Luckily, the club’s No. 2 centre is ready to play. So is defenceman Dan Hamhuis, who missed that same practice.
Head coach Willie Desjardins did not confirm anything and said the two would be game-time decisions.
So, Horvat and Hamhuis just made it their job and did their best to calm fans down.
Horvat’s got a point there — the Canucks need to win. There is no way around it. However, winning is something Vancouver has not been doing much this season. And chances are, they won’t in the future either.
After showing arguably their worst performance of the season in a 5-2 loss versus the Leafs, the team should be highly motivated to turn it around again tonight. The Wild, however, will be extra motivated as well, as the club just released head coach Mike Yeo, who had his favourites but wasn’t universally liked by the team.
TCW’s David Joun made out the following keys to the game in his Week 20 outlook:
- Four-point game
- Take note of the new bench boss
- Believe in yourself
This is a “four-point” game, if you will. The Canucks and the Wild are tied at 56 points through 55 games and are both hoping to sneak into the playoffs. If the Canucks want that wild-card spot, they will certainly have to beat the Wild. Winning this game or losing this game — it’s a four-point difference.
As mentioned above, the Wild have a new coach. After firing Mike Yeo, they put Iowa Wild head coach John Torchetti in charge. He and his team will likely do everything to win — let’s hope Vancouver can spoil the party.
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Last but not least, the everyone needs to believe in the team. They know they might not be as good as the teams who are currently in a playoff position. However, that does not mean they can’t beat them. Believe in yourself and everything is possible.
The fact that both Horvat and Hamhuis are able to return definitely helps. With Horvat in, Adam Cracknell and Emerson Etem will be tonight’s healthy scratches. Alex Friesen will make his debut and should be even more motivated to play well than everyone else.
This season basically goes “tank, playoffs, tank, playoffs, tank, playoffs, tank” — right now, the team looks far away from making the playoffs — and that won’t change for the rest of the year. Winning back to back games is nice and puts you into playoff contention, but losing to the worst team in the league has the opposite effect.
What can we do tonight? Hope for the best — and likely be disappointed.
What are your expectations for tonight? Can the Canucks get back on track and win this “four-point game”? Let us know what you think in the comments below!