|Vancouver Canucks goalie Roberto Luongo (1) looks on as Boston Bruins players celebrate leftwing Milan Lucic's winning goal during the third period of the NHL hockey game in Vancouver, British Columbia, Saturday, Feb. 26, 2011. (AP Photo/The Canadian Press, Geoff Howe) |
The Vancouver native and Bruins forward scored the game-winning goal in Boston‘s 3-2 win over the NHL-leading Canucks tonight.
“I mean it’s almost the perfect ending to a perfect couple days in Vancouver for myself,” Lucic said after the game. “From start to finish it’s been a heck of an experience.
It’s great to see our whole team battle throughout the whole night and get that win.“
After being recognized and having his jersey retired by his former junior team, the Vancouver Giants, on Friday night, on Saturday Lucic finished off his homecoming and his home town team in style, when he netted his 27th goal of the season.
“Definitely a special night last night, being honored by the Vancouver Giants, where I had two great years and it was a real special night and today another special night to go after it,” he said.
Lucic, who grew up down the street from Pacific Coliseum, had three points (1-2-3) as the Bruins picked up their fourth consecutive win.
“It means a lot, obviously for our team, we saw this as a great measuring stick for ourselves,” Lucic said of what the win Saturday night meant.
“And for myself being able to score a game winner here in my hometown in front of my friends and family where I don’t get a chance to play that much, it’s been really awesome.”
It wasn’t only Lucic who was excited to bang home the game winner, B’s goaltender Tim Thomas
was just as happy for his young teammate.
“It was really nice to see him get that goal and I wanted to make that hold up as the game winner so bad,” Thomas said.
“I’m very happy to see him get the game winner in his hometown, and hopefully that’s a game that he can remember and look back on for a long time. “
Although all eyes were on him this weekend, Bruins Head Coach Claude Julien thought his left-winger handled himself well.
“It’s his second time playing in here and I think he’s been excited about playing here especially after what happened [on Friday night] and it’s always fun to come back to your hometown,” Julien said.
“Especially when you’re in the other conference and you come once every two years so he had to be excited.
“And the thing is I was impressed by the way he handled himself. Excitement sometimes can get the better of you, but it didn’t.
"It brought the best out of him.”
Saturday night’s game was only the second time Lucic got to return to his home city, but despite the accolades thrown at him, he still credited his teammates to getting him where he is today.
“You remember playing hockey in your back yard here and scoring big goals and that type of thing,” Lucic said. “To be able to ply a big game and get the game winner here in front of my friends and family and all the Bruins fans that came out here, it’s a great feeling.
“But I have to hand it to my teammates as well. You can’t do anything without them.
"Without them this team wouldn’t be the team it is right now and we definitely came to play,” he said.---Hannah Becker