Vancouver Canucks turn to scrimmages

Updated: June 1, 2011, 12:16 AM ET
ESPN.com news services

VANCOUVER, British Columbia -- With a week between playoff games, the Vancouver Canucks added scrimmages to their usual practice routine.

Vancouver even went to its dressing room while the ice was cleaned after the first of two practice sessions Monday, and the winning team from the scrimmage jokingly posed for pretend photos.

"Just making sure we are sharp and treat practice like a game and ramp up the intensity level," said goalie Roberto Luongo. "Just a little to get in the game flow."

The Canucks are hoping those situations include plenty of special teams, which they focused on after the scrimmages were over. Vancouver's power play, which was tops in the regular season, is humming along at 28.3 percent (17 for 60) in the playoffs, while their opponent, the Boston Bruins, converted just 8.2 percent (5 of 61).

"Five-on-five we are pretty equal as teams, we're both good defensively, so special teams are going to be huge," Canucks forward Daniel Sedin said. "If our power play can be better than theirs, it's going to win us some games."

Center Manny Malhotra is also continuing to practice on Vancouver's fourth line after being cleared Saturday to return from a career-threatening eye injury suffered in March. Malhotra won't confirm he'll play Game 1, but said his legs and lungs are getting better every day.

Information from The Associated Press was used in this report.