25-8-7 since Jan 1st
The Vancouver Canucks struggled to bring their playoff intensity on Saturday, but managed to make the most of their performance against the Flames, forcing overtime in a 3-2 comeback over Calgary on Hockey Night in Canada.
Roberto Luongo had a shaky return to the crease after sitting out Friday’s game with a sore neck and Marc-Andre Gragnani buried his first as a Canuck in the comeback.
Bandwagon fans please hop on now. But please put down your panic buttons.
— Northwest SportsBeat (@NWSportsBeat) April 1, 2012
The Hat Trick
Lapierre’s New Line
The frustrating French Canadian has added an extra dynamic to Vancouver’s top unit, bringing additional grit and emotion to the newly formed first line.
The goal was the second shot of the night that beat Luongo thanks to lousy lateral movement after Olli Jokinen put one home early in the second period.
Luongo was less than sensational after Cory Schneider shut the door Friday facing the Dallas Stars.
Andrew Ebbett had a solid game in his return to Vancouver’s fourth line against the Flames, tipping home the game-winning goal in overtime after a frantic final few minutes at Rogers Arena.
The win was Ebbett’s first game back returning from a broken collarbone suffered in Boston earlier in the season.
Ebbett’s last 2 goals have been OT winners. The last one being Dec 28th at San Jose, and then again tonight. He now has 4 goals in his last 8 games, and made a case for more playing time down the stretch and into the playoffs.
The Canucks managed to sneak away with another two points after a poor performance on Saturday, stealing the extra point thanks to Andrew Ebbett’s clutch return to Rogers Arena.
Vancouver’s third line was tremendous again against Calgary, keeping the Flames’ forwards busy with their own brand of puck possession hockey that consistently conducted business in the Calgary zone.
“Ebbett’s had some challenges this year, he’s healthy and tonight he pushed his way into more minutes. A big goal in OT.” – Alain Vigneault was happy with the return of another depth forward to the lineup.
1st. Henrik Sedin - GOALS: 0| PTS: 3| ASST: 3 SOG: 2| PLUS/MINUS: 2
2nd. Maxim Lapierre - GOALS: 1| PTS: 3| ASST: 2 SOG: 3| PLUS/MINUS: 3
3rd. Chris Higgins - GOALS: 1| PTS: 1| ASST: 0 SOG: 3| PLUS/MINUS: 1
Vancouver 3, Calgary 2
When: 10:00 PM ET, Saturday, March 31, 2012
Where: Rogers Arena, Vancouver, British Columbia
Referees: Steve Kozari, Brad Watson
Linesmen: Bryan Pancich, Mark Wheler