Daniel Sedin scores OT goal to help Canucks edge Wild
ST. PAUL, Minn. (AP)—Even in its seventh NHL season, the Vancouver Canucks’ brother act is still drawing raves.
Daniel’s wrist shot past Minnesota goaltender Nicklas Backstrom gave the Canucks a 3-2 win and kept them within five points of the Northwest Division-leading Wild.
Vancouver trailed 2-1 in the third period before Markus Naslund tied the game on a power-play goal, with assists from both Sedin brothers.
“They’re world-class players, and definitely a first line on any team,” Wild forward Brian Rolston said. “They’re definitely a force to be reckoned with.”
Goaltender Roberto Luongo turned aside four Minnesota shots in a late Wild power play and had 20 saves in the game, improving to 2-2-1 against Minnesota this season.
“Tonight, we came back, Roberto needed to be really good at the end when they went on that power play. We found a way to win it in overtime,” Canucks coach Alain Vigneault said. “They obviously wanted this game badly, probably thinking if they win they take us out of the equation, but we stood right in there.”
Minnesota looked to be in good position to win early in the third after Eric Belanger, who had gone 14 games without scoring, poked the rebound of a Rolston shot between Luongo’s pads, giving the Wild a 2-1 lead.
Minnesota was outshot by a wide margin, and managed just four shots in the first half of the game, but Backstrom made 34 saves.
“He gave us a real good chance to win the game, even with the way we were playing, but he didn’t have a lot of support,” Wild coach Jacques Lemaire said. “It would be real easy to say we got a point and we didn’t play that bad. But we’re at home, this is a big game, a four-point game, and you’ve got to come out better than this.”
The Canucks dominated everywhere but the scoreboard in the opening period, outshooting the Wild 13-3. But it was Minnesota emerging with a lead after Marian Gaborik was credited with a power-play goal in the final minute.
Gaborik’s team-leading 33rd goal came when his shot appeared headed wide of the net, only to glance off the skate of Canucks defenseman Sami Salo and into the net.
For Cooke, it was his first goal since Dec. 30 against Anaheim. The other highlight of the period was an extension of the bad blood between these division rivals as Vancouver’s Jeff Cowan and Minnesota’s Todd Fedoruk squared off in a mid-game fight.
“It’s huge not only in the division race, but we’re battling for a playoff spot,” Luongo said. “Even though we scored a goal to tie it up, I think we really needed to go for the win and get an extra point there. We played a great game for 60 minutes and we deserved to win.”
Canucks defenseman Mattias Ohlund, who was suspended earlier in the season for a slash that broke Wild forward Mikko Koivu’s leg, was booed during starting lineups and every time he touched the puck.>
The Canucks announced Tuesday that defenseman Lukas Krajicek will have surgery on his right shoulder. Krajicek has missed the team’s past 10 games after suffering the injury in a Jan. 23 game with St. Louis. … The Canucks have the fathers of 17 players traveling with them on the two-game road trip to Minnesota and Nashville.