The Vancouver Canucks
are on the greatest roll in franchise history.
The Canucks got 3 goals from Ryan Kesler and 2 by Daniel Sedin as they rolled over the Edmonton Oilers 6-1 on Friday night for their eighth consecutive victory. The Canucks improved to 17-1-2 in their last 20 games, the best 20-game stretch in franchise history.
Their current 13-0-2 run is also the longest streak without a regulation loss since the Canucks entered the NHL in 1970.
"It's a lot of fun, coming to the rink each day and enjoying the streak that we're on," Kesler said. "It's something that doesn't happen every day, and we're just going to enjoy it."
Cory Schneider, who stopped 23 shots to improve to 8-0-2 this season, said the surge has been a complete team effort.
"One night it's the power play. One night it's a third- or fourth-line guy," he said. "Everyone seems to be chipping in, and on the back end (Roberto Luongo) and I are coming up with saves when we need to. Obviously we're scoring a lot of goals, but you've got to make the timely saves to get there. "
The Oilers, who spoiled Schneider's shutout bid on Ales Hemsky's goal in the final second of the second period, didn't provide a lot of competition. That won't be the case Saturday when the Detroit Red Wings come to Rogers Arena for a showdown between the top two teams in the Western Conference. The Wings' 5-4 overtime win on Dec. 22 was the last time the Canucks left the ice without two points.
"That's a good team coming in here," Kesler said of Detroit, which won 5-4 in a shootout at Calgary on Friday night. "We know we'll have to be ready."
The game was scoreless after one period, but the Canucks took command early in the second by scoring on their first three shots.
Daniel Sedin opened the scoring 30 seconds into the period, finishing off a give-and-go with twin brother Henrik. Kesler made it 2-0 at 2:04, and Daniel polished off another feed from his twin on a 2-on-1 break at 6:36 for a 3-0 lead.
Hemsky jammed the puck past Schneider during a scramble with 0.3 seconds remaining in the period to get the Oilers on the board.
But the Canucks quickly reasserted their control in the third period. Kesler deflected Dan Hamhuis' shot past Nikolai Khabibulin at the 5-minute mark of the third period, then tipped in Christian Ehrhoff's shot into the net during a power play at 10:56 to complete his second career hat trick -- the other came on Dec. 15.
"It's happening for me right now, I'm just having fun with this," Kesler said to the cheers of the crowd of 18,810 after the game. "Two in a month; I'll take three in a month."
Daniel Sedin earned his 600th career point when he helped set up Alex Edler's goal with 6:58 remaining.
Schneider didn't get a shutout, but he did remain unbeaten in regulation.
"It's been great," said Schneider, who's started five of the last eight games. "I think I lead the League in goal support -- every time I play, the guys score three, four, five, six goals. That makes my life a lot easier. It gives me confidence to go out there and play my game."
Oilers coach Tom Renney was plenty impressed with the Canucks.
"We played what is probably the best team in the NHL tonight," he said, "and we lost by five. There's a reason for that. You don't hand the puck over to a team like this and allow them to create any momentum. Certainly in the second period, they were able to capitalize on our Achilles heel, and that's turnovers.
"They are a great team. There isn't too much they do wrong. They're a big team. They're a heavy team. They are hard and strong on the puck Those are important lessons for us, and we have to recognize it and learn by it. We can't cower away from playing teams like this. We have to stand up and accept the challenge."
Material from team media and wire services was used in this report