Division Champs! Canucks top Avalanche 4-2.
It was sloppy, ugly, and not at all like a playoff matchup the Canucks will facing in a few short weeks. However, at the end of the day, the Canucks skated off with another win- their seventh in a row- and Northwest Division title with a 4-2 comeback win over the Colorado Avalanche. The Canucks clinched their third straight division title, also meaning they have locked up a playoff spot.
The game started horribly, with the Avalanche, a team that had just two wins in their last eighteen games coming in to the contest, struck first. Erik Johnson, the former St, Louis Blue, scored on the powerplay for his eigth of the year. Canucks goaltender Cory Schneider couldn't even see the puck due to all of the traffic in front of him. It whizzed over his shoulder short side. The Avalanche took ahold of all the momentum, and sophmore sensation Matt Duchene scored his first goal since Valentines day, a span of 11 games, after banking the puck in off of Sami Salo's skate.
The Canucks did muster some shots near the end of the period, but skated off down 2-0.
In the second, it was a completely different story. Maxim Lapierre, acquired from the Anaheim Ducks at the trade deadline, scored his first goal as a Canuck six minutes in. After some teriffic work by Chris Higgins-another deadline acquistion- Lapierre coralled a centering pass and let go a quick shot that squeaked through Avalanche goaltender Brian Elliots five hole.
The Canucks mounted chance after chance in the second, but Elliot was the story, turning them away.
In the third, it was more of the same. The Canucks dominated play. but were kept at bay by Elliot. Finally, Alexandre Burrows was able to get his 21st goal of the year, after shovelling a loose puck in the crease home.
Not long after, it was Henrik Sedin's turn to play hero. After taking a nifty between the legs pass from brother Daniel, Henrik's shot went far side on Elliot for his seventeenth of the year. The Avalanche, clearly exhausted, couldn't mount anything in the final minutes. Henrik Sedin capped off the scoring with his second of the game into an empty net. The Canucks next play Friday versus the Coyotes.