For the first time this season, Vancouver Canucks fans might get to see Nikita Tryamkin play.
The big Russian defenseman is “likely” to make his season debut tonight in Ottawa, according to TSN 1040’s Matt Sekeres.
Tryamkin has been a healthy scratch in Vancouver’s first 10 games. The 22-year-old has refused an AHL assignment, choosing instead to wield the KHL out-clause in his contract. When he hasn’t been sitting in the press box, the Canucks have been working him hard, trying to get him into better shape.
The opportunity for Tryamkin comes as Chris Tanev continues to battle a lower-body injury. Tanev returned to action last night in Montreal, but may have to sit again tonight. Vancouver also has Alex Biega available. He’s a right shot like Tanev, while Tryamkin shoots left.
If Tryamkin does get into the lineup tonight, he could skate with Luca Sbisa on the third pairing, with Philip Larsen bumping up to the top pairing with Alex Edler. Tryamkin and Sbisa practiced together a few days ago, before the Canucks departed on a six-game road trip, which began with a 3-0 loss to the Canadiens.
The Canucks continue their trip Saturday in Toronto. If Tanev can’t play tonight against the Senators, he may be available for the Maple Leafs game.