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Canucks Daily: Which Players Return?, Oilers on the Brink

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Vancouver Canucks, Jacob Markstrom
Former Vancouver Canucks goalie Jacob Markstrom and his Calgary Flames are facing elimination against the Edmonton Oilers.

Our Vancouver Canucks roll call cranked up yesterday, looking first at the team’s free agent crop. A smaller one impact-wise in Juho Lammikko, and a big one by comparison in Brock Boeser. The roll call continues later today.

By the way, Lammikko playing for Team Finland in his home country has gone pretty well thus far. The Finns finished atop Group B with a 6-0-and-1 record through the conclusion of the preliminary round and will cross over for the quarterfinals and play the 4th place team from Group A, Slovakia. Finland’s overtime loss came at the hands of their rivals Sweden 3-2 back on May 18th.

Speaking of the Swedes, they actually ended up finishing just behind Finland in Group B and will cross over to play Canada in the winner moves on, loser goes home QF. Vancouver Canucks defenceman Oliver Ekman-Larsson has played in five games and has chipped in an assist.

The 3rd-place Group A Canadians finished the prelim’s 5-and-2 with losses to Switzerland and Denmark. The quarters begin in Helsinki on Thursday.

With that, let’s cross back over the pond with a twirl around the Stanley Cup Playoffs …

Burnaby Boy Goes Big

Nuge! I prefer to spell it more phonetically as in “nooge”, but either way Burnaby native Ryan Nugent-Hopkins, the former 1st overall pick in the 2011 NHL Draft, came up large in Game-4 Tuesday night for the Edmonton Oilers in their 5-3 home victory against the Calgary Flames.

The Oilers took a commanding 3-1 lead in the Battle of Alberta second-round Stanley Cup Playoff series that returns to Calgary for Game-5 on Thursday night. RNH had the opening goal just 21-seconds into the game on a muff by Flames and former Canucks goalie Jacob Markstrom, and also scored the game winning goal on a rebound with just 3:27 remaining in the third period.

In his 11 seasons exclusively as an Oiler, Nugent-Hopkins has never been past the second round of the playoffs and has only actually reached the official postseason three times.

The game featured a bizarre tying goal by Flames defenceman Rasmus Andersson with 9:04 remaining in the game to make it 3-3. He spun and fired the puck 132-feet from his own end through traffic. Oilers goalie Mike Smith never saw it coming as it sailed past him into the net.

Nugent-Hopkins then recovered the game for Edmonton, who had blown a 3-0 lead.

Game Called Goalie

Apparently Igor Shesterkin was really good on Tuesday night as his New York Rangers defeated the visiting Carolina Hurricanes 4-1 to even that second round series at 2-2. He stopped 30 of 31 shots in the game and his overall playoff save percentage is .925%

Game-5 is Thursday.

Tonight, Wednesday, the Colorado Avalanche are at home looking to close out the St. Louis Blues in Game-5 of that Western Conference series.

Here’s the links to the Juho Lammikko and Brock Boeser Vancouver Canucks roll-calls ICYMI.

Enjoy the Hockey Action!!

VHN Managing Editor Rob Simpson has been covering the NHL for three decades on live TV, radio, and as a journalist. He worked his first ever game getting postgame sound as a teenager; it was Vancouver vs. Detroit.

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