After successfully completing a full practice Monday, Giants captain James Henry and his wonky knee have a doctor’s appointment today at which time it will be determined whether he can play tonight against the Tri-City Americans (7 p.m., AM 650). The Giant, down 2-0 in the best-of-seven opening-round series, need someone to be a difference maker after a pair of one-goal losses, 2-1 in OT and 5-4. Henry (in photo) isn’t Sidney Crosby, or even Brayden Schenn, but he is a 19-year-old with oodles of playoff experience. If he gets the green light, he’ll likely centre brothers Nathan and Michael Burns. Henry was injured on his first shift in the Giants’ final regular-season game March 20. He didn’t skate at all last week but took to the ice on his own Sunday before the full Monday practice.
Giants coach Don Hay is looking for a better defensive effort from his skaters after they surrendered five to the Americans on Saturday. “Tri-Cities is an explosive team and they have quick forwards who create a lot,” Hay said. “We have to be stronger defending and everybody has to do a better job of that. We’re close but obviously we’re not good enough. We’ve been doing some good things and we just have to do more of those good things.”
Meanwhile, Americans coach Jim Hiller told the Tri-City Herald he wants more from his team as well. “I think we need to play our best game of the series [tonight],” said Hiller. “I’m ready for that and I think our players are, too. We’ve hit our stride as far as firing on all cylinders. It will be a big challenge for us to go in there and play our best game.”
Tri-City netminder Drew Owsley is 12-4 lifetime against the Giants and 5-0-0-0 this season. Vancouver’s lone win over the Americans this season came when Owsley was injured.Tags: Vancouver Giants