Vancouver Canucks at Nashville Predators Preview: Attack Of The Clones

It's "deja vu all over again" as the Vancouver Canucks invade Bridgestone Arena tonight (7:00 p.m. Central on FS-TN). It was just two weeks ago that we saw them skate out of here with a 4-3 shootout win, and you can bet that besides looking for two points in the standings, each team will look to develop a pattern for success against an opponent they could very easily meet up with again in the playoffs.

The task, as always, begins with slowing down those high-flying Sedin twins.

Follow after the jump for your breakdown!

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Tale Of The Tape

Vancouver (38-15-6) at Nashville (34-19-6)
VAN Offense vs. NSH Defense NSH Offense vs. VAN Defense
5-on-5
GF/60 SF/60 Shoot % GA/60 SA/60 Save %
VAN Offense 2.8 (5th) 29.5 (11th) 9.5 (2nd) 2.2 (7th) 29.6 (16th) 926 (8th) VAN Defense
NSH Defense 2.3 (10th) 30.9 (27th) 926 (8th) 2.3 (16th) 26.7 (26th) 8.7 (11th) NSH Offense
GA/60 SA/60 Save % GF/60 SF/60 Shoot %
Special Teams
VAN PP vs. NSH PK NSH PP vs. VAN PK
GF/60 SF/60 Shoot % GA/60 SA/60 Save %
VAN 5-on-4 7.7 (1st) 56.7 (2nd) 13.7 (6th) 4.9 (7th) 53.6 (22nd) 909 (3rd) VAN 4-on-5
NSH 4-on-5 6.8 (21st) 53.3 (21st) 871 (19th) 7.5 (2nd) 48.6 (15th) 15.4 (1st) NSH 5-on-4
GA/60 SA/60 Save % GF/60 SF/60 Shoot %

This could prove to be a battle of the power plays, as the Preds' surprising PP unit will try to keep pace with a Vancouver bunch that has been at the top of the league for quite a while.

Vancouver Canucks

As usual, the Sedin twins are leading the way offensively for Vancouver, due in part to the specialized role in which they're used by Alain Vignault. They, along with Alex Burrows, take 3 offensive-zone faceoffs for every one they take in the defensive zone, the highest such ratio in the NHL. In other words, they are put in position to produce offensively, and they deliver results.


GP G A P +/- PIM PPG SHG GWG
SOG PCT
2011 - Henrik Sedin 59 13 51 64 +23 38 7 0 5 86 15.1


GP G A P +/- PIM PPG SHG GWG
SOG PCT
2011 - Daniel Sedin 58 26 35 61 +21 38 9 0 5 192 13.5


GP G A P +/- PIM PPG SHG GWG
SOG PCT
2011 - Alexandre Burrows 57 22 18 40 +21 56 3 1 6 139 15.8

The Canucks are running away in the Northwest Division, which they lead by 17 points over the Calgary Flames. They aren't letting off the gas, however, with a 10-0-2 record over their last twelve games.


Vancouver Canucks Last 5 Games

@ Edmonton Sun 02/19 W 5 - 2
Toronto Sat 02/18 W 6 - 2
Colorado Wed 02/15 W 3 - 1
Phoenix Mon 02/13 SO - W 2 - 1
@ Calgary Sat 02/11 SO - L 2 - 3

Nashville Predators

While energized by the recent acquisition of Hal Gill, the Predators may be a little bit shorthanded up front in tonight's game, as it sounds like Patric Hornqvist is still questionable, but Mike Fisher could be back in after his illness from Sunday.

Focusing on the defensive side of the game may be in their best interests, anyway. Over the course of franchise history, the Canucks have scored at the 2nd-highest rate against Nashville, 3.10 goals per game. Gill's presence on defense will be something to watch tonight, because his size and strength may be the key to breaking up the cycle, which is the Sedin twins' bread-and-butter style of play. If Gill ends up facing the Sedins very much (usually Weber & Suter get that matchup), keep an eye on how that plays out.

Pekka Rinne

#35 / Goalie / Nashville Predators

6-5

209

Nov 03, 1982



GP MIN W L OTL GA GAA SA SV SV% SO
2011 - Pekka Rinne 53 3055 32 13 6 122 2.40 1605 1483 .924 4

Peks has played pretty well lately, but I'd bet he'll want to bounce back from letting in a bit of a stinker in the 3rd period at Dallas Sunday night. How about sending the fans home with a free donut?

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