This game would be a great one to win, no doubt about it. The rest of the Northwest Division is pulling away from the Avs, who sit lonely in the basement a full five points behind Edmonton and Minnesota and seven points behind division-leading Calgary. Beating the Canucks tonight would be a big step toward reclaiming this potentially disastrous season.
Peter Budaj is coming off a superb shutout against the Nashville Predators at the beginning of the week, and will get the start again in net. He'll be facing Roberto Luongo, who has been very good for the Canucks, as always. Says Budaj:
"If you ask any goalie, he wants to outplay the goalie at the other end. Every goalie is beatable and we know that Luongo is playing really good right now. He's a great goalie. We just have to do the little things right. Get some traffic in front of him, get some rebounds and hopefully we get onto him."
The Avs have had a rough time on the road this year (2-4-0) but hopefully will be anxious to turn things around.
In injury news, Super Joe didn't travel with the team to Vancouver due to his recovering back, but he is expected to play within the next two games or so. We hope, because Tyler Arnason is back in the lineup after a healthy scratch against Nashville and we don't want this to become a habit.
The game starts at 8pm Mountain time, 10pm Eastern.