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Round 2
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Stanley Cup Final

San Jose vs. Vancouver Game 5 live blog

Wednesday, 05.25.2011 / 12:41 AM / Canucks v Sharks - 2011 Stanley Cup Conference Finals

By Dave Lozo - NHL.com Staff Writer

VANCOUVER, B.C. -- Welcome to the Game 5 live-blog for Tuesday's matchup between the Canucks and Sharks.

The Canucks are looking to go for the quick kill and avoid a trip back to San Jose. In their past two series, the Canucks had a chance to clinch in Game 5 at home, but failed to do so on both occasions.

If the Canucks win tonight, it will come 17 years to the day of their last Western Conference championship in 1994.

Teams will be taking the ice at about 8:30 ET (5:30 local) for warmups. Check back to see line combinations and the status of Sharks defenseman Jason Demers, who has missed the first four games of this series with an undisclosed injury.

12:49 -- Bieksa wins it. Canucks going to the Cup Final.

12:48 -- Higgins is stopped on a breakway after Vlasic loses track of the puck at the blue line.

12:42 -- We're past the 5-minute mark, and as you may have guessed, we're still playing here. Pavelski whipped a shot through the crease that almost banked off Setoguchi, but that's been it so far.

12:34 -- Sharks and Canucks have resumed their overtime battle. Overtime two is under way.

12:20 -- How about double overtime? Because that's where we're headed. In the last 3 minutes, the Canucks wanted a penalty shot when White passed the puck to Niemi near the crease, but White was never in the crease when he handled the puck. There wasn't a single penalty called in the OT, altough there could have been on several occasions. Shots were 16-9 in the OT and are 52-29 in favor of the Sharks.

12:12 -- Burrows again with a chance to win it, but Niemi saves and holds with 3:35 left.

12:08 -- Things have tightened up a bit. Down to 6:50 left. Sharks are at 50 shots, but the Canucks are getting their chances here in OT.

11:58 -- Luongo with 11 saves already in OT after just 7:30.

11:54 -- Nope, I'm back to let you know Ian White seemed to get away with a trip near his blue line, while Luongo has made a series of good stops. Kesler nearly won it twice. 5:43 gone by.

11:45 -- The teams are back on the ice for overtime. Next time we talk, someone will have likely scored a goal.

11:32 -- Ryan Kesler gets the tying goal, tipping home a shot from the point by Edler. Pearl Jam's "Alive" blares at Rogers Arena. The Sharks are undefeated in overtime in these playoffs at 5-0. Canucks are 2-2.

11:30 -- Canucks tie it with 13.2 left. Tipped home by Kesler. Unreal stuff here. Looks like we've got OT coming.

11:26 -- Less than 3 minutes to go. Was waiting for a TV timeout to update, but these teams aren't big on whistles. Kesler doesn't look 100 percent, the Sharks are still pressuring, and the Canucks need a goal badly.

11:15 -- Vlasic is back on the ice, no worse for wear. Halfway through the third, still 2-1 Sharks.

11:10 -- We're at the first TV timeout of the third period with 13:10 left. The Sedins are the only line generating anything right now for the Canucks, but boy are the generating something. Every time they gain the zone, the Sharks can't get the puck back. It's as if the Canucks have a power play every time that line is on he ice. But the shots are 31-14 Sharks, and the Canucks need to get one to avoid going back to San Jose for Game 6.

11:05 -- Vlasic is slow to get up after taking a follow through to the face after Burrows whistled a shot wide to the far side that had a chance if it hit the net. Vlasic not on the bench with 15:40 to go in the third.

11:00 -- Just 24 seconds into the third period, a crazy play results in Setoguchi making it 2-1. The puck got behind the Canucks in the neutral zone, and Pavelski dove to chip it to Setoguchi after Luongo dove out to play it. 2-1 game.

10:57 -- Teams are back on the ice for the third period, which will get under way in just about a minute.

10:45 -- After two periods, we're tied at 1-1 at Rogers. Shots are 25-12 Sharks. The Canucks are dominating in the faceoff circle, winning 22-of-35 draws. The Canucks had just seven shots at 5-on-5 last game and have just eight through two periods tonight. They've had some dangerous chances so far, but either Niemi has been there for most of them or they've overpassed the chance away.

10:40 -- Niemi with a couple of big and somewhat lucky saves on Henrik and Burrows with less than 2 minutes left.

10:36 -- And Ryan Kesler is back on the ice for the Canucks.

10:34 -- the Sharks had a chance to take the lead after a too many men penalty on the Canucks, but the Canucks were up to the challenge and killed it off. There's still 3:20 to go in the second period.

10:28 -- Sharks kill it off. Good work by the Sedins to generate some chances, but Niemi was there.

10:22 -- Lots happening here. The Sharks tie it as Marleau tips a Boyle shot on the PP, seconds after Kesler came up lame during the penalty kill. Kesler went to the locker room. Tough to say what he hurt, but there appeared to be no contact between him and Boyle. And now Mitchell is in the box for tripping with 9:21 left in the second. 1-1 game.

10:17 -- Oreskovich nearly makes it 2-0 off a quick 2-on-1 after Murray went down, but his shot rang off the post near Niemi's catching glove.

10:12 -- The Sedins nearly tic tac toe another goal to Burrows, but they narrowly missed at the right post. The Sharks third line with Heatley continues to get good chances and pressure, but Kesler blocked a long shot from White and Luongo was able to smother a loose puck before anything truly dangerous happened. Down to 13:53 to go in the second. Still 1-0 Canucks.

10:07 -- Much better start to this period for the Canucks. They pin the Sharks deep, and Ballard gets a good shot on Niemi, who sees it and stops it.

10:04 -- The second period is under way at Rogers Arena. More importantly, the 14 minutes of dance music that plays during the intermission has mercifully stopped.

9:50 -- The Canucks are 40 minutes from the Stanley Cup Final. They lead 1-0 after one period despite the Sharks holding a 15-6 edge in shots. Remember last game when Raffi Torres was called for charging on a hit on Douglas Murray? This game, Torres hit him clean and hard and staggered him behind the net. Murray got some revenge by hitting Maxim Lapierre seconds later, but Torres won that round.

Thornton's injury perhaps was a bit overblown. He played 7:11 in the first period and was 3-for-6 on faceoffs. However, he was on the ice for the Canucks goal.

Luongo looks like the type of goalie that will have to be beaten by a perfect shot. He was flawless against some great chances during the Sharks' power plays. Canucks defenseman Alex Edler was by far the game's ice time leader after one period with 9:36.

9:40 -- Ryan Kesler eventually joined Sedin in the box, giving the Sharks a 5-on-3 power play. They had a series of glorious chances even after Sedin's penalty ended, but Luongo was there to stop them all. He's made 14 saves so far with 2:26 left in the period. Canucks called a timeout after icing the puck.

9:34 -- With 5:57 left in the first period, the Sharks get the game's first power play. Henrik Sedin is called for hooking. So far, the Sharks bottom two lines have been their best. They're consistently in the Canucks zone and creating offense. But Roberto Luongo is looking very sharp. But he'll be tested here with the Canucks down a man.

9:29 -- Niemi turns aside a long shot that was bouncing and skipping along the ice. Being the gracious, kind fans that the Canucks fans are, they are reminding Niemi of his last name. Just reassuring him, I think.

9:24 -- Henrik and Daniel connect behind the goal line, Henrik finds Alex Burrows in front for a slam-dunk goal. Beautiful passing from the Sedins, and it's 1-0 Canucks.

9:22 -- The Canucks got the first good scoring chance from the Sedins, but the Sharks fired the six shots so far. Thornton looked good on his first shift and nearly scored. Lot of nervous energy in the building right now. The Sharks new forward lines have been effective.

9:12 -- The puck has been dropped at Rogers Arena. Game 5 is under way.

8:40 -- The Sharks unveiled some new forward lines in pregame warmups. Whether Todd McLellan goes with them remains to be seen, but here's what they were:

Marleau-Thornton-Couture
Clowe--Pavelski-Setoguchi
Mitchell-Wellwood-Heatley
McGinn-Mayers-Desjardins

It's possible Thornton's shoulder injury means he can't take faceoffs, so adding Couture to the line and moving Setoguchi to the second line gives McLellan some insurance. Heatley, who has been struggling, is on the third line.

8:30 -- Warmups have started, and those players who have missed time for both teams are absent. For the Canucks, Christian Ehrhroff and Aaron Rome aren't on the ice. For the Sharks, Jason Demers is not out there.

For me, it's a great win for our hockey team and for a lot of people back in Columbus, especially our fans in particular … people who have been devoted to this organization, it's big.

— Blue Jackets coach Todd Richards on their win vs. the Penguins in Game 2, the franchise's first-ever Stanley Cup Playoff victory