Vancouver destroys Dallas 7-1
Vancouver Canucks fans took a collective sigh. The Canucks shook off some rust, the players shook off some slumps, and the Canucks skated away with a 7-1 thrashing at the expense of the Dallas Stars.
The Canucks came into the game with several players mirred in slumps. Mason Raymond hadn't scored a goal in twelve games, Mikael Samuelsson in fifteen, Dan Hamhuis in twenty five, and Alex Burrows in six. However, that all changed Monday night.
Alex Burrows was the first to get the monkey off his back, as he unloaded a slapper 1:18 into the game. The puck dipped under Stars netminder Kari Lehtonen glove and into the back of the net.
Surely, it was one Lehtonen should've stopped. He did manage to make 26 stops.
Six minutes later, Dallas tied the game on a beautiful goal by Brad Richards. James Neal tipped a Henrik Sedin pass attempt. It went to Brad Richards who, left all alone in front, faked a slapshot, deked to the backhand and went top shelf on Vancouver netminder Roberto Luongo. Luongo did finish the game with 25 saves.
Shortly after, the Canucks were awarded a powerplay. The powerplay had been dormant for the Canucks the last two games, going a dismal 0 for 10. The powerplay was clicking tonight, however, as Ryan Kesler scored his 27th of the year on a tip in front of the net.
Less than a minute later, and on another powerplay, Christian Ehrhoff blasted a blue line shot past Lehtonen for a 3-1 lead. It was Ehrhoff's 8th of the season.
The beatdown was on.
About four minutes into the second, Mikael Samuelsson sniped a perfect shot over Lehtonen's shoulder for his ninth of the season. You could almost hear Samuelsson breathing a sigh of relief as he celebrated with teammates.
Henrik Sedin scored next due to some great hustle by fourth liner Aaron Volpatti. Volpatti out skated Stars defenseman Karlis Skrastins, then fed a pass out front to a wide open Henrik Sedin. Sedin tapped the puck, it went off Steve Ott's skate and into the back of the net for his eleventh of the season.
The game will also be remembered as a chippy one, as many Dallas Stars had to leave the game due to injury. Jamie Langenbrunner was the first, and James Neal followed. After Adam Burish was ejected for a game misconduct, Defenseman Mark Fistric had to play forward because the Stars were down so many players.
In the third, the Canucks completed the rout with Mason Raymond scoring, no doubt a huge relief to him also, and Dan Hamhuis chipping in.
That was it for Kari Lehtonen, who surrendered seven goals on 33 shots. Back up goalie Andrew Raycroft was left to limit the damage with about seven minutes left.
Raycroft stopped all three shots he faced.
The Canucks ended a four game winless streak.
The Canucks play Wednesday at home to Nashville before the all star break.
With his 27th of the season, Ryan Kesler tied Daniel Sedin for the team lead in goals... Chris Tanev got his first NHL point, an assist on Dan Hamhuis' goal... Jeff Tambellini had an assist for his first point in 13 games.