FIVE KEYS TO THE GAME

The Province - - SPORTS | HOCKEY -

1 Tired­ness

It’s one thing to play back-to-backs at home; at least you get to sleep in your own bed. But hav­ing to travel right af­ter the game and then play in a hos­tile lo­cale? That’s not easy. Trav­el­ling teams on the sec­ond night of a back-to-back in­vari­ably strug­gle with the pace of play.

2 Shots from the paint

The Canucks were once do­ing a great job of get­ting shots from the slot. Lately they’ve not been. Some of that was in­juries. But some of that was other teams surely fig­ur­ing out what the Canucks were do­ing. Want to win more? Find those good shots again.

3 The right shot

The Sharks drive a ton of their of­fence from the right point — and it turns out that’s not just about Brent Burns. Even when he’s not on the ice, the Sharks are well above the league av­er­age in how many shots they fire from out there. The Canucks will be fo­cused on that, no doubt.

4 Anders Nils­son

With the Canucks trav­el­ling right af­ter last night’s home game against the Pan­thers, you fig­ure the other big Swede will get the start in goal.

5 Deadly spe­cial teams

San Jose have the best penalty kill in the league. The third-best power play. Wanna guess why they’re win­ning so much?

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