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J.T. Miller wore Arturs Silovs' pink dress shirt at Canucks practice

J.T. Miller helped cut the tension at the Vancouver Canucks' practice on Thursday with a prank on rookie goaltender Arturs Silovs.
J.T. Miller made a fashion statement at Thursday's Canucks practice.

There's an art to keeping things light in a high-pressure situation like the Stanley Cup Playoffs.

It's important for a team to keep things from getting too serious, as it's easy to dwell on what went wrong and have that overtake your mindset.

"You’ve got to keep a good attitude," said Carson Soucy during the season. "Otherwise, it can spiral a little bit.”

Conor Garland even said that he sees it as a responsibility to keep things light along with J.T. Miller and Nikita Zadorov. Those players have to find the right words to break the tension, especially after missing an opportunity to move on to the second round thanks to a tough loss on home ice. Camaraderie in hockey is often built on chirping — good-natured jokes at the expense of your teammates — but there's a time and a place for making those jokes to ensure they land correctly and don't cross the line into creating more tension.

It's not easy.

And then sometimes your goaltender shows up to the rink in a pink paisley dress shirt and keeping things light becomes exceptionally easy.

Miller embraced the opportunity to prank Arturs Silovs by donning his flamboyant dress shirt over his gear at Thursday's practice.

The shirt was definitely eye-catching, with paisley swirls in white, black, and purple on a salmon-pink backdrop. It's the type of shirt that you might find at Dan Flashes because the pattern is so complicated.

Miller took the ice and ran through a few drills before finally switching to his team-issued green practice jersey.

After practice, the roasts continued, as Zadorov hit Silovs with a zinger: "I mean, he has to know better. He’s not going to a nightclub in Riga."

As for Silovs, he seemed to take the jibes in stride, suggesting Miller looked "nice" and joking that it might even be an improvement over the team's regular practice jersey.

"I knew it was coming," said Silovs with a grin. "It looked good on him, you know? Something different from every single day...I guess [my teammates] liked it so much, they wanted to bring it on the ice."

Head coach Rick Tocchet said earlier this season that pranks can be part of keeping things light.

"I mean, I hope somebody pranks somebody in the next week," said Tocchet at the time. "Baby powder in the blow dryer, something like that. That's the old-school stuff...I think it's important to keep guys relaxed, even-keeled."

Unsurprisingly, he thought Miller's prank on Silovs was just the thing for the team as they head into Game 6 on Friday.

"It's good — loosen the guys up!" said Tocchet, then passed judgement on Silovs' style: "Oof."

"I think it's important," he added. "Z's a big guy [for that], I love Zadorov and Millsy when they chirp. Sometimes our room can be a little quiet but you hear those guys — Garland's another comedian in there...I think it's a big thing because this is high pressure and you have to stay loose. Even on the bench, you've got to make sure you stay loose because the last thing you need is a tight bench."

The prank led to Canucks fans having some fun on social media as well, with one fan suggesting it belonged at the end of Roger Nielson's stick: