The Vancouver Canucks have won just one of their last seven games, with that triumph coming against the San Jose Sharks during their just-completed 1-3-0 homestand. The Canucks hope to get in the win column again on Thursday as they take a brief break from a lengthy string of contests at Rogers Arena to visit the Sharks.
Vancouver, which is in the midst of a stretch during which it plays eight of nine at home, scored more than two goals for just the second time in its last seven games on Tuesday but dropped a 7-5 decision to Montreal. The other occasion came on Friday in a 4-3 overtime win over the Sharks, whose 5-3 loss at Edmonton on Monday concluded a 1-1-1 road trip. The setback ended San Jose’s five-game point streak (3-0-2), but the club begins its three-game homestand with a 3-0-2 record in its last five at SAP Center. Martin Jones has allowed four or more goals in each of his last six starts (1-3-2) and is winless in his last three as he remains in search of his 100th career victory.
TV: 10:30 p.m. ET, Sportsnet Pacific (Vancouver), NBCSN California (San Jose)
ABOUT THE CANUCKS (15-16-4): Thomas Vanek highlighted a four-point performance Tuesday with his 10th career hat trick, which ended his six-game drought and gave him a double-digit total in each of his 13 NHL seasons. The 33-year-old Austrian, who is with his seventh team, netted a career-high 43 tallies in 2006-07 with Buffalo. Brock Boeser was in the lineup against Montreal after suffering a bruised ankle in his previous game and scored his team-leading 18th goal, which also tops all NHL rookies, while defenseman Erik Gudbranson returned from a 12-game absence due to an upper-body injury and notched an assist for his first point of the season.
ABOUT THE SHARKS (17-11-4): San Jose could be without leading scorer Logan Couture, who suffered a concussion at Vancouver on Friday and missed the loss in Edmonton. The 28-year-old center has recorded 26 points and also tops the club with 15 goals, leaving him six shy of 200 for his career. Reigning Norris Trophy winner Brent Burns notched a pair of assists Monday, giving him two points in five of his last six games.
1. The Canucks assigned C Michael Chaput, who appeared in three games with the club, to Utica of the American Hockey League.
2. San Jose C Joe Thornton needs one point to tie Doug Gilmour (1,414) for 18th place on the all-time list.
3. Vancouver D Derrick Pouliot’s next game will be the 100th of his career.
PREDICTION: Sharks 4, Canucks 2