A Swede finally came through for the Canucks when they needed it most. It still wasn’t a Sedin though
Samuel Pahlsson scored the game-winning goal with just over five minutes remaining, as the Vancouver Canucks were 3-2 winners over the Winnipeg Jets.
Ryan Kesler and Alexander Edler scored for Vancouver while Blake Wheeler and ex-Canuck Kyle Wellwood had Winnipeg’s goals.
Jets goalie Ondrej Pavelec was stellar on the night, making 42 saves on 45 shots. Cory Schneider saved 30 of 32 shots en route to his 15th win of the season.
The Canucks began the game with high energy, managing to put 20 shots on goal in the first period alone. The breakthrough would finally come on a Winnipeg powerplay, when Kesler was the beneficiary of a lucky bounce. A clearing attempt by Tobias Enstrom hit the linesman and bounced right to Kesler whose shot beat Pavelec five-hole.
Despite getting some inspired play from the USA line consisting of Booth, Kesler, & Higgins, Vancouver was having trouble solving Pavelec, and the Jets would eventually take the lead through Wellwood and Wheeler. At that point it looked as though Pavelec might shut the Canucks out the rest of the way, but some extended pressure from the American line would lead to an Edler shot that deflected off Jets forward Bryan Little past Pavelec to tie the game up. It was the second time in as many games that an Edler shot had deflected off an opposing player for a goal.
The two teams would continue to trade chances until Pahlsson’s goal with 5:33 remaining in the game. Jannik Hansen entered the Jets zone, dropped the puck for Bieksa who drew the defender towards him before laying it off for Pahlsson who ripped a wrist shot cleanly over Pavelec’s glove. It was just the third goal of the season for Pahlsson, his first as a Canuck, and also the first since the shorthanded goal he scored for Columbus against Vancouver earlier this year.
The win leaves Vancouver one point back of St. Louis for first in the league.
Their next game is Saturday at 7:00 pm, when they welcome the Montreal Canadiens to Rogers Arena.
Image: Globe & Mail