Tuesday, March 21, 2006


Canucks 4, Oilers 1
Reuters photo -- Dan Riedlhuber

[initial partial post]

So it came, the start of three straight games against the Edmonton Oilers that very well could determine whether the Canucks get into the playoffs. The Canucks needed any shred of happiness they could get and hopefully turn it into some momentum. The bad news was that the Canucks hadn't beaten the Oilers in five tries this season. Surely that had to change if the Canucks had any chance to make it to the second season.

1st period

»» 1, VANCOUVER, Trevor Linden 7 (Josh Green, Jarkko Ruutu) 5:26

»» 2, VANCOUVER, powerplay, Daniel Sedin 18 (Anson Carter, Mattias Ohlund) 9:36

2nd period

»» 3, EDMONTON, Raffi Torres 23 (Jarret Stoll, Sergei Samsonov) 1:10

»» 4, VANCOUVER, Ryan Kesler 8 (Todd Bertuzzi, Alexandre Burrows) 12:09

3rd period

»» 5, VANCOUVER, emptynet, D Sedin 19 (Henrik Sedin, Linden) 18:52

Three stars -- (1) Auld, (2) Edmonton's Dwayne Roloson, (3) D Sedin

skater, goals-assists-points
D Sedin 2-0-2
Linden 1-1-2
Kesler 1-0-1
Bertuzzi 0-1-1
Burrows 0-1-1
Carter 0-1-1
Green 0-1-1
Ohlund 0-1-1
Ruutu 0-1-1
H Sedin 0-1-1

The Canucks really came through when they needed to, playing the best full game they'd played in a very long time. They certainly needed the victory in the worst way. After the full night's slate of games was over with, the Canucks had vaulted themselves from ninth place in the Western Conference to seventh. Their 37-27-6 record (3-3 shootout, three overtime losses) is good for 80 points, which ties with Anaheim, but the Ducks have three games in hand on Vancouver and therefore have the sixth slot in the West. Even better, the win over Edmonton pushed the Canucks over Edmonton by a point, though the Oilers do have a game in hand. Baby steps. The Canucks are now fourth in the Northwest Division, one ahead of Edmonton, two behind Colorado for second place, and four back of the leading Calgary Flames. What a difference a single win makes. If the Canucks manage to sweep the Oilers, it'd be huge. The easy part is that in the miniseries with Edmonton, the Canucks won the road game and now come back for two at home. The bad news is that the Canucks haven't been too hot at home since everyone's calendars turned to 2006, and they've only won once at home since the Olympic break.

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