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Canucks prepare for potential series-clinching Game 6 in Edmonton

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The Vancouver Canucks are getting ready for Saturday's potential series clinching Game 6 in Edmonton, following Thursday's blood-pumping late 3-2 win over the Oilers.

But the team’s head coach Rick Tocchet is warning his players this will be their toughest challenge yet.

“I think the message is, it’s going to be really hard,” Tocchet told reporters on Friday.

“And, that’s all you should be thinking about – and whatever it takes to be done you do. I’ve said it a bunch of times, you've got to get back to earth. We really have to get back to earth. It’s going to be our toughest game, that’s the way you've got to approach it.”

The Canucks are becoming used to tight games. The team has now been involved in nine straight one-goal contests.

“I think the whole team, the mindset is, we’ve been so focused,” said captain Quinn Hughes on Friday.

“It’s not just the leadership group. It’s every guy in here. You see guys scoring, (Carson Soucy) last night, and (Phillip Di Giuseppe) and different guys stepping up. We’re a real team.”

Tocchet feels his team’s buy-in to a disciplined approach has helped in these tight games.

“You can’t just always go for it,” Tocchet said of the close games.

“You know, you’re up 2-0, you've got to manage the puck. If you’re down 2-0 with 30 minutes, you've still got to be comfortable. And I think that’s helped us.”

Di Giuseppe’s goal, in particular, added an extra bit of magic to an already special night. The forward had missed games due to the birth of his second child – in what he described as a difficult pregnancy – and scored a crucial goal to bring Thursday’s game to 2-2 before J.T. Miller’s eventual winner.

“It’s been a battle of nine months for her, and obviously with my job I’ve been away a lot, and she’s been in the hospital a lot, so we’ve had a lot of family coming in and out and supporting out,” an emotional Di Giuseppe told reporters after Thursday’s game.

“As I’ve said before, it takes a village – and it’s a blessing to have one.”

The Canucks aren’t waiting around to see whether the team advances. On Friday, the organization posted presale tickets for the Western Conference finals, with upper-level seats going for $445.

Puck drop for Game 6 is scheduled for 5 p.m. Pacific Time. 

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