Presidents Day: Canucks 1st in NHL after win over LA
It's a historic day in Vancouver as the Canucks; yes, those Canucks, finally get to make the proclomation: Best in the NHL. For the regular season anyways.
What do the Canucks and Charlie Sheen have in common? Winning, baby.
The Canucks continued their dominance over the rest of the NHL by posting a 3-1 victory over the visiting Los Angeles Kings. The win gave the Canucks 113 points, 11 more than the Philadelphia Flyers, who only have 5 games remaining. That, ladies and gentlemen, is a clinch. It`s never happened before in Canucks history, and though it`s a great day to be a Canuck, the playoffs is when it all really matters.
The game started with the pace of the Kentucky derby, with players flying all over the ice. There were big hits, the biggest an absolute steamroll by Raffi Torres on Jason Richardson, and great saves by both goalies. It was the Kings getting the first goal, as rookie Kyle Clifford got his sixth goal of the season, beating a sprawling Roberto Luongo. Luongo, for the record, has only given up 1 goal in each of his last four games.
Ryan Kesler looked to have tied the game on a powerplay at the end of the 1st period, but on review, it was determined the puck crossed the goal line seconds after the buzzer went.
The Canucks came out flat to start the second, with Los Angeles setting the tempo. They bodied the Canucks to the fullest, and that may have been their downfall. The Sedin Twins seemed incredibly frusturated by all the cheap shots they were getting, and decided to do something about it. Daniel Sedin scored his 41st goal of the year, taking a Viktor Oreskovich feed and placing a perfect shot off the far post and in. After the goal, Sedin was given another cheap shot that planted him on his butt. There was no call, a theme for the entire game.
With 5 seconds remaining in the period, Jannik Hansen skated up the ice, flanked by Christian Ehrhoff and Raffi Torres. Hansen fed a drop pass to Ehrhoff who found a hole in Kings goalie Jonathan Quick, and beat him with 0.9 seconds left for his 14th of the year, and the lead.
In the third, the Canucks absolutely dominated, outshooting the Kings, get this, 16-0. Thats right, the Kings couldnt muster a single shot.
The period was marred by cheap shots, first, Aaron Rome on Kings forward Michal Handzus. Rome sandwich Handzus while he was in a vulnerable position, and flattened him against the boards. There was no call. Good job, refs.
Then, Kyle Clifford, showing his limitless class and sportsmanship, hit Chris Tanev in the back while he was going back for the puck. Tanev`s head hit the boads, and he lay on his knees for about 3 minutes. Clifford was given 15 minutes in penalties. Worst part about it, was that Kings coach Terry Murray actually disagreed with the call. Go Figure.
While on the 5 minute powerplay, Matt Greene took a roughing call after cross checking Ryan Kesler in the back. The Canucks had a full two minute 5 on 3, which Kesler took advantage of, scoring his 37th goal of the year. Daniel Sedin had an assist, making him the first player to 100 points this season.
The Canucks took advantage of the Kings lack of discipline and skated way 3-1 victors.
They next play Saturday versus Edmonton.