The Pacific Division-leading Vancouver Canucks will retire the numbers of two players in a special ceremony preceding Wednesday night’s game against the visiting Chicago Blackhawks.
It’s only natural that twins Daniel (No. 22) and Henrik (No. 33) Sedin would have their numbers retired together. They were the second and third picks of the 1999 NHL Draft out of Ornskoldsvik, Sweden, and played 17 seasons with the Canucks before they both retired at the end of the 2017-18 season.
Daniel set the franchise record for goals (393), power-play goals (138) and game-winning goals (138). Henrik holds the team records for games played (1,330), assists (830) and points (1,070).
Another player who one day might have his number hanging from the rafters at Rogers Arena is Quinn Hughes.
Hughes had three more assists in Vancouver’s 6-2 victory over Nashville on Monday, snapping a four-game losing streak for the Canucks. It was the fourth three-assist game of the season for the rookie defenseman, joining Ray Bourque (Boston, 1979-80) as the only rookie defensemen to accomplish that feat in NHL history.
“He’s having a great year,” Vancouver coach Travis Green said of Hughes, the No. 7 overall pick in the 2018 NHL Entry Draft. “He’s a good player, a great player. I mean, what more do you have to say about him? He had a good game tonight.”
Hughes leads all rookies with 44 points and leads the Canucks with 36 assists.
“He does a lot of good things,” Green said. “I’m not overanalyzing it by any means. He’s getting better before our eyes and he was good again tonight, much like a lot of guys on our team.”
J.T. Miller had a goal and an assist, Elias Pettersson had two assists and goaltender Jacob Markstrom finished with 36 saves, including several key ones in the second period after the Predators had closed to within 4-2.
Chicago will be playing the second half of a back-to-back that began with a 5-3 loss at Edmonton on Tuesday. Leon Draisaitl had a goal and three assists and Kailer Yamamoto scored two goals for the Oilers who won despite not having the services of star center Connor McDavid, who was sidelined with a quad injury.
The loss extended the winless streak to a season-long four games (0-2-2) for the Blackhawks, who are last in the Central Division and six points behind the Arizona Coyotes for the final wild-card spot in the Western Conference.
Afterward, Chicago coach Jeremy Colliton was asked about the frustration level in his team’s locker room.
“It should be high,” Colliton said. “We’ve got to find a way to produce efforts, and if we do it will be good enough to get points.
“I believe in the guys we have that we’re good enough to string results together and we’ve got to find a way to be more consistent within the game and within periods and shift to shift, string multiple shifts together. … We’re in the (playoff) race but we have to find a way to raise our level just like all the other teams are.”
This is the third of three regular-season meetings between the two teams with Chicago scoring a 5-2 home victory on Nov. 7 and the Canucks winning 7-5 on Jan. 2 in Vancouver.
–Field Level Media