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Tripped up

by Derek Jory / Vancouver Canucks

You want to know what happened in the Canucks game and you want to know now. We get it. Here’s the bare bones recap of Vancouver’s 1-0 loss to Chicago.

…The final horn sounded, but even then there was some doubt as to whether or not the game was indeed over.

Vancouver, trailing 1-0 after a Bryan Bickell scored 1:12 into the third period, hit Chicago netminder Antti Niemi with 30 shots overall, 11 of which were in the final frame. With time winding down and the Canucks pressing, a shot appeared to elude Niemi, so much so that the goal horn went off. In the end the goal was an illusion and Vancouver lost for the first time in four games on home ice.

The Canucks have their two-game winning streak snapped with the loss and they fall to 12-11-0 on the season and 8-3-0 at GM Place.

Without the superb goaltending of Roberto Luongo, the Canucks would not have been in this game until the end.

Although Luongo faced only 17 shots, many were from second chance opportunities from in close and he was able to shut the door more often than not. The lone Chicago goal came after Brian Campbell lost control of the puck trying to sneak a shot on goal, it rolled into a scrum of players and Bickell managed to get lumber on it.

Since giving up five goals on October 27, Luongo has allowed a measly seven scores in his last four starts. Through 17 games he sports a record of 8-8-0.

The return of Daniel Sedin was supposed to mean big things for brother Henrik, instead it sparked fellow linemate Alex Burrows, who was Vancouver’s biggest offensive threat.

Burrows, who hadn’t scored in five games coming in and had one goal in his past 17 games overall, had seven of Vancouver’s 30 shots, including five in the third period when the Canucks needed a lift the most.

Burrows was also a set-up man on this night as late in the third he drew a pair of Blackhawks to the right side near the Chicago goal before sending a pass to Christian Ehrhoff who was streaking down main street. The puck was just out of his reach or Vancouver had a sure goal.

Daniel Sedin provides a lot of much needed offence for the Canucks, but so far this season (and keep in mind his season has been composed of a mere five games) he hasn’t exactly been the teams good luck charm.

The Canucks are 1-4-0 with Danny in the line-up, but 11-7-0 without their star forward.

In his first game back since Oct. 7, Daniel had 18:18 of ice time on 24 shifts and three shots.

Canucks defenceman Willie Mitchell on his team’s effort and how it will lead to success more times than not:

”One mistake cost us, a little bit of missed coverage in front of our net on a rebound, otherwise we played pretty well. We couldn’t solve their goalie, he played great and if we continue to play like that, we’ll get more wins than losses, that’s for sure.”

“We had the fresher legs and were controlling the game very well, but give them credit, like most teams do when they’re up a goal, they kept stuff to the outside. We played well and if we play like that more times than not we’re going to get rewarded.”

Another bizarre break in the schedule has Vancouver without game action for the next three days, the Canucks hit the ice again Thursday, at home, against the Los Angeles Kings.

This is the second of four meetings between Vancouver and LA this season. The Canucks beat the Kings 2-1 in a shootout on Oct. 29.

NUMB3RS

2 – Number of times the Canucks have been shutout this season.

7 – Shots for Alex Burrows, a team-high.

16 – Saves for Roberto Luongo.

18:18 – Ice time for Daniel Sedin in his return to the line-up.

QUOTABLE
“I thought we dominated the whole game. We gave them 17 shots, only a couple of shots in the third, and it was 1-0. Obviously it’s disappointing."

-
Ryan Kesler

"When a guy rebounds in close we’ve got to put them high because nowadays all the goalies cover low, so we’ve got to put those up top."

-Roberto Luongo

"I think we play good goaltenders every night, but he’s a good goaltender, I don’t know what the Finnish guys are doing over there."

-Mikael Samuelsson
OFFENCE

If goals meant nothing and effort was all that counted, the Canucks won this game in a landslide. Unfortunately putting the puck in the net matters most and Vancouver simply couldn't pull the trigger in the end.

Vancouver outshot Chicago 30-17.

DEFENCE

Holding one of the most dynamic teams in the NHL to only 17 shots is a big accomplishment; the Canucks even managed to snap Patrick Kane's career high five-game goal streak.

The lone defensive blunder that led to the Blackhawks goal is all anyone will be talking about tomorrow.

SPECIAL TEAMS

The Canucks were 0-for-2 with three shots; the Blackhawks went 0-for-1 with two shots.

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