VANCOUVER, British Columbia (AP)—Daniel Sedin beat Nicklas Backstrom and Roberto Luongo stopped Pierre-Marc Bouchard in the sixth round of a shootout to give the Vancouver Canucks a 4-3 win over the Minnesota Wild on Sunday night.
Luongo, who made 28 saves in regulation and overtime, forced Marian Gaborik to shoot high in the fifth round of the shootout before getting a glove on Bouchard’s backhand to clinch the win and move the Canucks two points ahead of both Minnesota and Calgary atop the Northwest Division.
Vancouver tough guy Jeff Cowan, who had gone 52 games without a goal before scoring his first of the season on a short-handed breakaway against Phoenix on Thursday, scored two goals for the first time in his 350-game career. Sami Salo also scored as the Canucks improved to 8-1-1 in their past 10 games.
Backstrom was back in the Minnesota net after missing the last game after tweaking his groin two games ago and played well. He made 32 saves in regulation and overtime as the Wild fell to 7-1-3 in the past 11 games.
Radivojevic opened the scoring 6:55 in after Luongo misplayed Todd White’s soft shot off the wing. It was the ninth goal of the season for Radivojevic, and fifth against the Canucks.
Salo sent a point shot past a screened Backstrom with two minutes left in the first period, but Gaborik put the Wild ahead again after a scramble in the Canucks crease just 40 seconds into the second period. With Luongo down after a spin move by Mikko Koivu in the slot, Gaborik outbattled defenseman Kevin Bieksa to slide his 23rd goal—and ninth in the past 10 games—into an empty net.
That’s when Cowan took advantage of a promotion from the fourth to third line after a strong last game. He tied the game 2:44 into the second by deflecting a point shot by ex-Wild defenseman Willie Mitchell, and fought off a check in the high slot to tip another Mitchell shot past Backstrom 10 minutes later.
Minnesota C Dominic Moore, acquired from Pittsburgh just before Tuesday’s trade deadline, was a healthy scratch, avoiding his first game on the same ice where brother Steve Moore was hit by ex-Canucks forward Todd Bertuzzi almost exactly three years earlier, leaving him with a concussion, broken bones in his neck and unable still to resume playing. Wild RW Mark Parrish was named captain for a second straight month earlier in the day, but didn’t play after suffering an undisclosed upper-body injury Thursday. Wild G Manny Fernandez, out since Jan. 30 with a knee injury, has resumed practicing and could return later this week.