Vancouver scored four third period goals as they defeated San Jose 7-3 in Game 2 of the Western Conference finals. Daniel Sedin scored two power play goals to lead the Canucks to the lop-sided win.
San Jose and Vancouver exploded for four goals in the first period. Logan Couture opened the scoring at 2:28 with a power play goal. Vancouver responded by scoring two goals in: 39 seconds on goals by Raffi Torres and Daniel Sedin on the power play. San Jose tied the score at two when Patrick Marleau scored on the power play; it was San Jose second power play goal of the period.
The first half of the second period was tight checking with a lot of neutral zone play and turnovers by both teams. The second half of the period loosened up starting with Alex Burrows having a great opportunity in the slot but his shot missed the net. Vancouver broke the tie about two minutes later when Chris Higgins made a beautiful cross ice pass to Kevin Bieksa who went in alone on Niemi and scored between Niemi legs to give Vancouver 3-2 lead. The play picked up after the Bieksa goal with the play becoming more wide open. San Jose spent more time in the Vancouver end for the duration of the period and Luongo kept the Canucks up by one goal when he made a big glove save off Joe Thornton in the slot. Niemi stopped a sure goal by Alexander Edler late in the period, Edler had a wide open net, but Niemi made a great pad save. In a surprising, rare fight Bieksa got the better of Patrick Marleau. In the last minute of the period San Jose enforcer Ben Eager hit Daniel Sedin from behind sending Sedin into the glass face first, he was slightly cut and Eager was given only a two minute boarding penalty, Eager should have been given a major penalty for his dirty, gutless hit on Sedin.
The third period began with Vancouver on the power play from Eager’s hit on Daniel Sedin. Vancouver did not have a shot on goal during the power play and never threatened to score. Ben Eager was not done visiting the sin bin, as he was given a penalty for tripping at 6:57. Vancouver made San Jose pay as Mason Raymond found Chris Higgins in the slot and his shot beat a screened Niemi and Vancouver had a 4-2 lead. San Jose had a chance to get back in the game when Joe Thornton had a breakaway, however, they were given a penalty for too many men and Vancouver was back on the power play. The Sedin twins looking much more comfortable in this series connected on the power play as Henrik Sedin passed the puck to Brother Daniel in the slot and he beat Niemi to give the Canucks a three goal lead. San Jose down three goals with about nine minutes left in the third period seemed to wave the white flag as it looked like they conceded the game. Vancouver scored two more goals and won 7-3 to take a 2-0 lead in the series, Game 3 is on Friday in the shark tank in San Jose.
Notes: Mikael Samuelsson will not travel to San Jose as he has a lower body injury and has not played since May 9.
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Written by Kevin Kelly