After a week off, the Vancouver Canucks were back in action.
They welcomed the Arizona Coyotes to town. Arizona is the second-worst team in the NHL only ahead of the Montreal Canadiens. They have also been dealing with arena issues and other off-ice problems but we won’t get into that.
The Canucks had to win this game. Losing to the Coyotes would have been another low point of the season. Fortunately, the Canucks didn’t make that happen.
Lineup and pregame notes
So this is how the Canucks lined up against the Coyotes.
With Quinn Hughes in the COVID-19 protocol, Travis Hamonic is still out with an apparent lower-body injury and Tucker Poolman dealing with illness,(Not COVID related.) Kyle Burroughs was moved to the left side and Noah Juulsen slotted in after being called up from Abbotsford on Tuesday.
Oliver Ekman-Larsson and Conor Garland were facing their former team for the first time since the draft-day trade. It was also the return to Vancouver for Loui Eriksson and Antoine Roussel. Jay Beagle was also part of the trade but he didn’t make the trip as he is out long-term with a lower-body injury that required surgery.
There was no tribute video for Eriksson or Roussel, (Let’s face it, they would have just shown the faces Eriksson made which became memes and empty net goals for Eriksson.) but they did get a welcome back from Al Murdoch and cheers from the 50% capacity crowd. (with a few boos apparently.)
New Assistant General Managers Derek Clancey and Emilie Castonguay were also in the building.