Vancouver Canucks Game Preview: Next Stop, Motor City

DETROIT, MI - NOVEMBER 10: Brandon Sutter
DETROIT, MI - NOVEMBER 10: Brandon Sutter /

Since the terrible game in Boston, the Vancouver Canucks redeemed themselves on Friday against the Buffalo Sabres. Massively outshooting the Sabres, the Canucks created more opportunities for their players to produce. However, south of the blue line may be a concern having allowed a allowed a goal in the first minute.

The Vancouver Canucks’ season this year has not been surprising, but stressful nonetheless. There is no doubt they are a deep team; yet, their young players are still developing, and the veterans on the team are digressing. Weather they win/lose is a coin toss each game.

Friday night in Buffalo did have some notable stories though. After looking great overall coming out of the gate – despite only scoring two points in seven games – Markus Granlund scored his first of the season popping in the loose puck off a re-bound. Granlund is a solid intangible player with offensive upside.

Let’s hope he can take a step forward in his career points-wise this season with the Vancouver Canucks!

Vancouver rolls into the Motor City – the fourth stop on their five-game road trip – 3-3-1. The Detroit Red Wings are by no means a big hurdle too high for the Vancouver Canucks.

Though Mike Green and Dylan Larkin have been excellent so far this season, the Red Wings are only 4-3-1. Erik Gudbranson is returning from his one-game suspension so the back-end of the Canucks will be less scrambled minute-wise tonight.

With the Red Wings hoping to break their losing streak, and the Canucks hoping to start one in the win department, it should make for some good Sunday afternoon hockey!

Vancouver Canucks


2017-18 Record: 3-3-1

2016-17 Record vs Red Wings: 0-1-1

Goals For: 19

Goals Against: 22

Injuries: Brendan Gaunce (shoulder, out indefinitely), Alexander Edler (knee, 3-4 weeks), Loui Eriksson (knee, 4-6 weeks)

Who’s on offence

Derek Dorsett: The lovable overpaid fourth-liner currently leads the Vancouver Canucks in goals, and is tied with Brock Boeser and Michael Del Zotto for most points with five. Dorsett has always excelled in his role, but has found a little bit of a scoring touch since joining the Canucks – his career high season was in Vancouver.

More from The Canuck Way

Markus Granlund: As mentioned above, Granlund netted his first of the season in Buffalo. Yes, it has been disappointing that Granlund only has two points. But it is very early in the season, look who is leading! With how great Granlund plays away from the puck, he will absolutely have offensive success this year with just a little puck luck.

Who’s on defence

Chris Tanev: Again, good old Tanev. What would the Vancouver Canucks do without him? Tanev has continued to be the backbone of Vancouver’s defense. With Alex Edler out, he is the only solidified top-four defenceman the Canucks have at the moment.

Who’s in net

Jacob Markstrom: Markstrom was not stellar against Buffalo, but good enough to help his team win. With a day of rest in between games, if he really is the Vancouver Canucks’ number one goalie, Markstrom will dress tonight.

Projected lineup:

Daniel Sedin—Henrik Sedin—Jake Virtanen

Sven Baertschi—Bo Hovat—Brock Boeser

Sam Gagner—Alex Burmistrov—Thomas Vanek

Derek Dorsett—Brandon Sutter—Markus Granlund

Ben Hutton—Chris Tanev

Michael Del Zotto—Erik Gudbranson

Derrick Pouliot—Troy Stecher

Detroit Red Wings


2017-18 Record: 4-3-1

2016-17 Record vs Canucks: 2-0-0

Goals For: 25

Goals Against: 25

Injuries: Danny DeKeyser (ankle, day-to-day), Tyler Bertuzzi (wrist, 3-4 weeks), and Johan Franzen (concussion, day-to-day).

Who’s on Offense

Dylan Larkin: Already bouncing back from his sophomore slump of a season, Larkin is tied with Henrik Zetterberg for second in team scoring with nine points. Larkin only has one goal thus far -compared to Zetterberg with four – and seems motivated to add it to. The Vancouver Canucks have their work cut out defending him tonight.

Who’s on defence

Mike Green: With 10 points in eight games, Green leads his team in scoring. Though Green has not lost his scoring touch over the years, he has not been on an offensive pace like this since his days with the Washington Capitals! All Green’s points have come five-on-five and he currently leads the team in ice-time.

Who’s in net

Jimmy Howard: It looks like Howard will get the nod against the Vancouver Canucks tonight. The veteran goaltender is 1-2 and has a 2.54 goals against average, with a 0.923 save percentage. So far, Petr Mrazek has been the better of the two, so look out for Hoard to show up tonight with something to prove.

Projected lineup:

Anthony Mantha—Henrik Zetterberg—Gustav Nyquist

Thomas Tatar—Dylan Larkin—Justin Abdelkader

Martin Frk—Frans Nielson—Darren Helm

David Booth—Luke Glendening—Luke Witkowski

Niklas Kronwall—Mike Green

Jonathan Ericsson—Trevor Daley

Xavier Ouellet—Nick Jensen

Keys to victory

Vancouver Canucks

  • With Gudbranson back in the line-up, hopefully a balance of grit and skill can help Vancouver’s back-end play a more complete game.
  • The power play needs to score more. The Vancouver Canucks are blowing way to many chances up a man.
  • Markstrom must not let in anymore weak goals, especially if it is the first shot of the game! It seems like he lets in an relatively easy one, and then gets in the zone and plays excellent. The Canucks need more consistency in net.

Detroit Red Wings

  • Let Green lead the rush five on five as he has been doing so well so far.
  • Larkin’s line clicking and him chipping in a goal or two.
  • Howard having a strong night in net. He was not been that great this season yet; therefore he is due for a breakout game. .


Alex Hoegler

Final. 3. 72. 2. 104

The Red Wings simply own the Canucks, having won three of the last four meetings. Vancouver also has just one win in the Motor City since Feb. 2012, so I can’t take them in their own House of Horrors.

Isha Jahromi

72. 3. 104. Final. 1

Vancouver Canucks win 3-1 as long as Howard and Larkin do not play excellently. I think Vancouver is excited and motivated to ride this road trip momentum wave and perhaps even get a small win streak going.

Scott Rosenhek

104. Final. 2. 72. 4

Derek Dorsett leads the team’s in goals, but that will change tonight. Derrick Pouliot gets a goal and Jacob Markstrom won’t give up a soft goal. Brock Boeser will put on a show.

Next: Prospects Watch Week #2: Canada's Finest

Tyler Shipley

72. 4. 104. Final. 2

This is as close to a hot streak as we will get, so let’s enjoy it. Weak opponents and a lot of energy from Brock and Jake give Vancouver the edge. Daniel Sedin edges closer to 1000 points, Vanek scores the winner.