That was a pretty good statement game for the Canucks. For once this week they made a headline that had nothing to do with controversy, but rather the destruction of the Pittsburgh Penguins. It wasn't perfect by any stretch, as they came out flat in the first half of the first period (or so) where the Penguins did not. Once Evgeni Malkin scored his first goal in 11 games I was thinking: "Oh great, here we go." But the Canucks gradually got better and better as the period went on, tying the score 7:10 after Malkin's fluky one and then about 4:00 after that Alexandre Burrows strips Sergei Gonchar of the puck at the Canucks blue line and scores a back-breaking shorthanded goal.
From there the Canucks scored 4 more goals in the second period to Pittsburgh's 1 and outshot them 14-7 in the middle frame. The Penguins could not handle the Canucks' relentless attack. It was a sight to behold, and a hell of a way to spend a Saturday night. Cute seeing all the kids lining up along the glass to watch their hero Sidney Crosby during warm up, but Crosby was a non-factor tonight. Well, he was a factor, just a negative one. He finished a -3 and no points. For the first time this season he was held to no shots. None. Yeah, I'm laughing at that. Only 18:25 of icetime too. Stop it! My sides are hurting!
Bill Guerin was also a -3 and Sergei Gonchar finished -4! John Curry was not getting any help at all and was mercifully pulled after 24:29 played. By then it was already 5-1 Canucks. Alexander Pechurski played pretty well in Curry's stead, because the Canucks kept the pressure on as the Penguins remained rattled and mostly disillusioned.
If you missed Alain Vigneault's rant in defense of Burrows on After Hours you can see that here. Great stuff from the coach. Speaking of Burrows, that's 11 goals in his last 7 games. Look at his game-by-game stats and drool. That is 36 points combined in 7 games for the top line. Domination.
We knew it and the team knew it. They just had to get a win to put the hell week behind them. It feels great doesn't it?
Pavol Demitra, Kyle Wellwood and Tanner Glass all had no points and were a -1. It may take Demitra a few games to get back into the groove, but it's good to have that extra threat out there. Brad Lukowich didn't seem to have a strong game. That was the first Canucks win in 4 tries with him in the lineup. The Canucks got multiple point games from Mason Raymond, Mikael Samuelsson, Jannik Hansen, Daniel Sedin and King Henrik Sedin. Yeah, there is a new King Henrik in the NHL!
Roberto Luongo put the last game behind him and looked sharp. That's what the pros do.