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Canucks will need to battle hard for Game 2


Yeria

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Ah...is there any other league out there that uses more cliché phrases than the good old NHL? I mean, duh, would you be telling Canucks not to battle hard for the upcoming Game 2 - or any other game for that matter - against the talented Blackhawks? Of course not, but that's why so many bloggers and self-claimed professionals alike can get away with putting up titles like that in the first place. ;)

So let's go through why, obviously, Canucks will have to show up against the Blackhawks tonight.

Reasons to show up

1. The team was embarrassed in front of the fully packed United Center the other night. Expect them to come out swinging their axes early tonight. They will want redemption and will try all they can to get even before the series moves on to Vancouver.

2. If Kane & Co. were really underestimating Canucks coming into this series, now they would know who they are really up against. It is Canucks' turn to use the bitterness from the last year's loss to not get overconfident coming into Game 2.

3. Kane, Toews and Hossa. If you were to say they are just great players, that would be some serious understatement. These guys know how to put the puck into the cage and no doubt they will be more than eager to lit the lamp with more frequent tendencies tonight.

So there you have it. Then, how are Canucks supposed to battle hard against the young and talented 'Hawks? Are there any holes to exploit? What is the key to our game tonight? Yeria has decided to humbly jot down his twenty pennies.

Keys to victory

- Stay out of troubles! Canucks are leading the series, albeit by only one game, so there is no reason to initiate the rough stuff. Of course, Canucks should not shy away from physical challenges, but should not put too much emphasis on stimulating Adam Burish either.

- Stay out of the boxes! Canucks have been doing a better job in PK department as they killed off 14 of their last 16 power plays, but they are still the league worst with 65.6% efficiency rate. Chicago is only operating at 17.2% efficiency rate in power plays, but Canucks would not want to take any chance.

- Use that speed! Blackhawks have had trouble containing speedy Canucks for the first 40 minutes in Game 1. Blackhawks' blue line has lost some speed recently, as Brian Campbell does not look as he has fully recovered, and Joel Quenneville's decision to put Dustin Byfuglien as a D-man will take away their mobility even more. If Canucks can play their north-south game to their excellency, Blackhawks' blue line will surely have some trouble catching up with Raymond, Kesler, Grabner and Co.

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