Tue Mar 15 01:32am EDT
The Chicago Blackhawks forward had a career-high four assists in their impressive 6-3 victory over the visiting San Jose Sharks. All four of his helpers came in the five-goal second period that put the game away, including the primary assists on Marian Hossa's(notes) two power-play goals less than three minutes apart.
Happy Birthday, Mattias Ritola. The Lightning forward scored two goals, giving him four for his NHL career, in Tampa Bay's 6-2 rout of the Toronto Maple Leafs. A healthy scratch recently, he scored two even-strength goals 3:09 apart in the second period, earning him a glorious shaving cream bomb to the face.
As Vancouver built a 3-0 first-period lead on goals by Raffi Torres(notes), Daniel Sedin(notes) (No. 38) and Ryan Kesler(notes) (No. 35), Luongo stopped 12 Minnesota Wild shots. In the second period, he stopped 13 more as the Wild outshot the Canucks 14-3. As Minnesota crept to within one goal in the third, Luongo remained strong and led Vancouver to a 4-2 victory capped by Kesler's 36th goal of the season into an empty net.
Honorable mention: Andrew Brunette(notes) and Mikko Koivu(notes) had a goal and an assist for the Wild. … Mikael Samuelsson(notes) and Christian Ehrhoff(notes) had two assists for the Canucks. … Teddy Purcell(notes) had three assists for the Lightning, while Steven Stamkos(notes) and Marty St. Louis had two each. … Nikolai Kulemin(notes) scored his 26th for the Leafs. … Jonathan Toews(notes) scored goal No. 30 for the Blackhawks, while teammate Patrick Kane(notes) scored his 100th NHL goal and added an assist. … Joe Pavelski(notes) had a goal and an assist for the Sharks, who had a 5-on-3 power play in the first three minutes of the game. … Corey Crawford(notes) had 33 saves for Chicago.
Did you know? Canadian Prime Minister Stephen Harper watched the Vancouver game alongside former Canucks player Trevor Linden in regular seats eight rows up at center ice, signing autographs for fans. (AP)
Dishonorable mention: James Reimer(notes) was pulled after 48 minutes, giving up 5 goals on 29 shots to the Lightning. … Carl Gunnarsson(notes), Tyler Bozak(notes) and Joffrey Lupul(notes) were minus-3 for the Leafs. … Colby Armstrong(notes) could be done for the season after blocking a shot and breaking his foot. ... Antti Niemi(notes) was pulled after 27 minutes, getting lit up by his former team to the tune of four goals on 18 shots. … The Wild were 0-for-4 on the power play.