VANCOUVER (NEWS1130) – The Canucks will ice a fairly young lineup tonight when they host the San Jose Sharks (7 p.m.) to open their six-game NHL preseason schedule, but it will not be the Canucks’ coaching debut of John Tortorella who says that he won’t be behind the bench, instead letting assistant coaches Mike Sullivan and Glen Gulutzan handle the game.
“I’m just not a good enough coach to be able to coach a game to try to win it which we should try to be doing, every time you put the uniform on you should be trying to win, plus evaluate and give a fair look at some of these kids,” says Tortorella, who will watch the game from above the ice.
Tortorella also showed the famous fiery side of his personality when a cell phone went off during his media availability today. The Canucks coach threatened to walk away from future media interviews if it happened again.
One of the Canucks youngsters playing tonight is first round draft pick Hunter Shinkaruk. The Medicine Hat junior will play on a line with Ryan Kesler and Alex Burrows in his NHL debut.
“Obviously, I’m going to be nervous and I don’t want to do too much out there to get myself into trouble, but I also have to do what got me here as well,” says the 18-year-old Shinkaruk. Fellow 2013 first rounder draft pick Bo Horvat is expected to skate with Tom Sestito and Dale Weise. The Canucks 9th overall pick at the NHL Entry Draft says he is also a little nervous but “mostly excited to get going”.
Eddie Lack will play the first two periods in goal while Joe Cannata will get the third. Lack, who is expected to have the edge for the Canucks’ backup job says that his hip injury is in the past and he is feeling 100%. Lack’s American Hockey League season was shut down last year in November when he required hip surgery.