The Vancouver Giants return home tomorrow night to take on the Everett Silvertips for the first of six meetings this year with their U.S. division rival. The Giants are 1-1-0-0 on the year, while the Silvertips are 0-0-0-2, having lost in a shootout last Friday to Portland and a shootout on Saturday vs. Kelowna.
Despite coming off a loss Saturday night in Victoria, there are a number positives for the Giants through the WHL’s opening weekend; 7 different players have scored a goal, the last two first round picks, Dalton Sward and Anthony Ast, have stood out, and captain James Henry is 100% healthy, leading the team with 1 goal and 3 assists.
The Everett Silvertips have gone through a number of changes over the summer, most notably the departure of head coach Craig Hartsburg. He was replaced by one time Giants assistant coach Mark Ferner. Ferner most recently was the head coach of the Vernon Vipers of the BCHL, who he led to 3 straight BCHL Titles and 2 Royal Bank Championships.
Last year, Everett finished 8th in the Western Conference. Goals came at a premium as they were the 2nd lowest scoring team in the entire league. The Giants were 5-1-0-0 vs. the Silvertips last year and over the 8 seasons in which they have faced each other the Giants are 27-14-2-4 vs. Everett.
The Tips feature Tyler Maxwell, who is coming off a 41 goal season and blueliner Ryan Murray. The native of White City, Saskatchewan was recently ranked 4th in TSN’s top prospects for next June’s NHL entry draft.
Brendan Gallagher will miss his 3rd straight game for the Giants as he remains at training camp with the Montreal Canadiens.
Game time is 7:00 pm at the Pacific Coliseum.