Canucks Not Concerned With Regular-Season Struggles Against Tim Thomas, Bruins


VANCOUVER — The Bruins and Canucks don't meet up often. That's probably just as well for Vancouver, at least as long as Tim Thomas is in net for the Bruins.

Thomas has dominated the Canucks in their rare meetings, and Vancouver will now have to deal with a steady dose of the unorthodox Vezina favorite in the Stanley Cup Final set to open Wednesday in Vancouver.

Thomas is 3-0-0 with an 0.33 GAA and a .990 save percentage in three career games against Vancouver. He's allowed just one goal on 98 shots in those games, with that coming in a 3-1 Boston win this season on Feb. 26. Bruins general manager Peter Chiarelli called that victory "one of the best games that we've played throughout the year" when he discussed the upcoming series on Saturday.

But the Canucks aren't worried about Thomas's past domination or the Bruins' success in Vancouver this year, dismissing it as a statistical abnormality due to the lack of sample size.

"This is a team that we only play once a year, that we don't see very often," Vancouver coach Alain Vigneault said. "So that one game in the season is probably not reflective of how both teams play on a regular basis. It can be, but since we don't see them very often I don't think you can put too much emphasis on the stats from that game or playing once a year against Timmy."

The Canuck players also don't seem concerned with Boston's past success against them in the regular season.

"We play them once or twice a year, you can have a bad game every 82 games," Vancouver forward Daniel Sedin said. "We just happened to play Boston. We could have had a heck of a game, so you can't really put too much emphasis on that other than we know he's a good goalie and we know that's a good team over there. It's not going to be easy, but when you don't play that often it's really tough to say [it's significant]."

The Canucks aren't worried about Boston's victory in their lone meeting this season, but they did admit that facing a team they've only played once can present a challenge.

"It's a little tougher as far as knowing personnel or knowing tendencies," Canucks forward Manny Malhotra said. "But we have a great video staff here that's going to give us the best possible breakdown of the game. We know they're a very talented team and they're in the Cup Finals for a reason."

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