Canucks come back in third, beat Blackhawks 4-3
The Vancouver Canucks showed why they are the top team in the NHL by beating the Blackhawks 4-3. It was an odd game with weird bounces, blown calls by officials, and a new art ross leader.
First, Dave Bolland of the Blackhawks appeared to have scored the opening goal. However, officials deemed that Troy Brouwer was interfering with Vancouver netminder Roberto Luongo, and the goal was waved off. On further review, however, Brouwer was nowhere near interfering with Luongo. It was a horrible call, and one the Canucks capitalized on.
Christian Ehrhoff fired a shot from the point. It went through traffic and beat Blackhawks netminder Marty Turco for the games opening goal, and his tenth of the season.However, this goal also had controversy. Replay's showed that Ehrhoff had actually come in the Blackhawks zone offside.
However the goal stood. Jonathan Toews did respond in the second by slipping a puck past Luongo's 5 hole, making the score 1-1. It was Toews' 19th of the season.
Later, Nick Boynton got off a major schnide by scoring his first goal in sixty nine games. Toews centered the puck, and it bounced off Boynton's leg and in, making it 2-1 Blackhawks.
The 'Hawks almost made it 3-1, but Roberto Luongo made a marvellous save on Brian Campbell, sliding to his right and getting his toe on a low shot.
Mikael Samuelsson notted the game at 2 on the powerplay when his shot deflected off Bryan Campbell and in the net, for his 11th of the year.
In the third the Hawks delivered a devastating blow when Dave Bolland did get a goal that counted. It was a chip shot in front that rookie Canucks D man Chris Tanev accidentally batted in off his glove. It gave the Hawks a 4-3 lead about eight minutes in the third.
The Canucks, however, showed they are much different than last years squad. Henrik Sedin finished off a gorgeous tic tac toe play with Brother Daniel and Mikael Samuelsson for his twelfth goal of the year, tying the game at 3.
Then, on a classic Sedin rush, Daniel Sedin snapped his 28th goal home, giving him the lead in the Art Ross race by one point over Steven Stamkos, who was held pointless in his game earlier.
The Blackhawks got a late penalty, but the Canucks, who were a perfect 5-5 on the penalty kill, managed to kill off the penalty and hold on for the win. Luongo was indoubtly the MVP of the game after stopping 42 of 45 shots. The Canucks play Ottawa next on monday.
Notes: Cody Hodgson had an assist on Christian Ehrhoff's opening goal, giving him a modest 2 game point streak... The Canucks have now won 5 straight games.. the Canucks have a jaw dropping nine point lead on the Detroit Red Wings for top spot in the Western Conference.. Sami Salo scored two goals, including the game winner in first game as a Manitoba Moose, on a conditioning stint