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Thatcher Demko will indeed get his first-ever playoff start for the Vancouver Canucks tonight, according to a report from Sportsnet’s Dan Murphy.
The longtime Canucks host made the declaration with emphasis hours before Game 5, where Vancouver faces elimination.
Demko starts. Period. #canucks
— Dan Murphy (@sportsnetmurph) September 1, 2020
Murphy’s report follows rumblings from Elliotte Friedman on Hockey Night in Canada on Monday night, as well as reports from TSN 1040’s Rick Dhaliwal on Tuesday morning.
Demko, 24, is in his first full NHL season and has just 8:26 of playoff experience, earned when he took over from starter Jacob Markstrom late in Game 1.
Jacob Markstrom is either experiencing lower-body soreness (at best) or has an injury there.
Could change come warmup, but team is operating as though Demko will likely start.
— Matthew Sekeres (@mattsekeres) September 1, 2020
It’s rumoured that Markstrom is banged up, perhaps with a lower body injury. Certainly, he was not at his best during the third period of Sunday’s game.
“As far as tonight… tune into the game,” said head coach Travis Green, unwilling to divulge any information about his goaltenders, to the surprise of nobody.
“All year our goalies have been rock solid for us,” said Canucks centre Brandon Sutter. “Whoever’s in, we got full confidence in. We’re not too worried about it.”
Demko has had an up-and-down season for the Canucks, finishing with a 13-10-2 record and a .905 save percentage. After Markstrom was injured in February, Demko started seven games in the final two and a half weeks before the season was paused in March. He went 3-4 during that span.
This will be the first time in Demko’s young career that he has started a game against the Golden Knights.
louis domingue baking for the canucks and antoine roussel showing him off is absolutely my fave thing to come out of bubble hockey so far 😩🥺 pic.twitter.com/jZftyN19Ji
— nicole 🦋✨ (@nikkijams) August 20, 2020
Louis Domingue, who has made his biggest contributions to the team with his baking in the bubble, will back up Demko if Markstrom can’t suit up.