Tuesday, October 24, 2006


AP photo -- David Pellerin

The Canucks traveled to Dallas to face a red-hot Stars team whose start has been bested only by undefeated Buffalo this season. This was the Canucks' fourth game of the five-game road trip. This was the Canucks' tenth game in the season-opening stretch that included nine of the first 11 games on the road. On the current road trip, the Canucks are 2-1, with the lone loss coming on the back end of a home-and-home with the Oilers. The two other wins were back-to-back wins in Saint Louis and Nashville, both of which featured the Canucks trailing in the third period, tying it late in the third, then winning in overtime. Meanwhile, Dallas goalie Marty Turco has an absolutely crazy record in net against Canadian teams for no good reason. Furthermore, he has only two career losses against Vancouver. The Canuck power play has been terrible lately, but the other half of the special teams could be proud because they'd killed off 33 of the last 37 opposing power plays.

1st period
The Canucks scored on their first shot of the game, the opposite of a late trend in which the opposing team usually scores on their first shot. On a fairly quick play, Taylor Pyatt behind the net spotted Henrik Sedin along the goal line on the right side, and he quickly found his brother Daniel Sedin and passed to him across the crease, and Daniel beat Marty Turco over the right shoulder.
»» 1, VANCOUVER, Daniel Sedin 5 (Henrik Sedin, Taylor Pyatt) 1:46
It's not different at all, actually, since Dallas ended up scoring on their first shot of the game. Niklas Hagman rushed across the blue line and snapped the puck as well as Kevin Bieksa's stick (clear out of his hands). The puck went deflected off Bieksa's stick and past Luongo.
»» 2, DALLAS, Niklas Hagman 3 (Matthew Barnaby, Philippe Boucher) 2:24
The Canucks outshot Dallas 9-5 in the period. They were 0-for-1 on the power play while Dallas was 0-for-2.

2nd period
Early in the period, Turco got chopped in close by Ryan Kesler and lost his stick as a result. After a flurry of scoring chances, Turco finally smothered the puck with his gloves. Shortly after that, young'un Alexandre Burrows and pest of pests Matthew Barnaby threw down the gloves. With eight and a half minutes to go, Jere Lehtinen looked to have passed to Mike Modano, who unleashed an incredible short-angle wrister from the right faceoff dot that beat Roberto Luongo inside the far post, but it was waved off as Lehtinen was ruled to have passed the puck to Modano with his glove. Vancouver outshot Dallas 10-7 in the period (19-12 overall). They were 0-for-1 (0-for-2) on the power play while the Stars were 0-for-2 (0-for-4).

3rd period
With Dallas on a two-man advantage and the Canucks having killed off 37 of their last 41 penalties, the odds finally caught up with Vancouver on Dallas' third two-man advantage situation of the game as Eric Lindros near the left point shot to the net, and Modano was in the right spot for the rebound (right circle), putting it through just past Luongo's left skate.
»» 3, DALLAS, powerplay, Mike Modano 5 (Eric Lindros, Sergei Zubov) 8:33
Inside the final minutes with Luongo pulled from the net for an extra skater, the Canucks generated some chances that they sadly couldn't generate on the many late power plays that Dallas gave them, and in a scoring flurry, the puck trickled through Turco's legs and Kesler spotted it and tried to tap it past the goal line, but was held off not by Turco, but by the blade of Sergei Zubov's stick as the two battled to a stalemate. It was on the wrong side of the goal line as far as Vancouver was concerned. Vancouver outshot Dallas 15-14 in the period (34-26 total). They were 0-for-4 (0-for-6) on the power play while Dallas was 1-for-3 (1-for-7). Luongo stopped 24 shots for the game.

Three stars -- (1) Dallas' Marty Turco, (2) Dallas' Mike Modano, (3) Ohlund

skater, goals-assists-points
D Sedin 1-0-1
Pyatt 0-1-1
H Sedin 0-1-1

In the faceoff circle, Vancouver won 32 of 57 draws (56%). Brendan Morrison won ten of 15, Ryan Kesler won five of 13, Josh Green lost both of his, Marc Chouinard won seven of 11, and Henrik Sedin won eight of 14. Green led the team with five shots, and five other Canucks had three shots apiece. Alexandre Burrows led the team in dishing out four hits, and Mattias Ohlund and Matt Cooke delivered three apiece. Green notched two takeaways. Sami Salo coughed up the puck five times, and Ohlund did so three times. Ohlund, Trevor Linden, and Cooke missed the net twice each with shots.

In plus-minus, not a lot of goals were scored, so there isn't much fluctuation. Plus-skating Canucks (all plus-1) were Salo, Taylor Pyatt, Daniel Sedin, and Henrik Sedin. Minus-skating Canucks (all minus-1) were Kevin Bieksa, Burrows, Linden, and Chouinard. All other Canuck skaters were even.

The loss dropped the Canucks to 5-4-1 (3-0 overtime, 0-1 shootout), good for 11 points. This puts them at third in the Northwest Division and seventh in the Western Conference. They trail Minnesota by three points and Edmonton by one, and both of those teams have played two less games. Colorado trails by a single point but has a game in hand. Calgary is in the cellar, six points back but with three in hand. Colorado with their ten points are eighth in the West. Dallas leads with 16. Minnesota (2nd), Anaheim (4th), and San Jose (5th) all have 14 points. Nashville leads the Central Division with nine points and are therefore third in the West. The Canucks travel to Chicago for a Wednesday night game.

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