Canucks vs Wild Game 4
The Canucks to advance to the playoffs after a 5-4 overtime win against the Wild. Vancouver came in and looked to close out the Minnesota Wild Friday night after taking the 2-1 series lead. A 3-0 shutout for Jacob Markstrom in game 3 and things could be over tonight. Vancouver would make one change to the lineup. After taking the warm-up skate Oscar Fantenberg was not able to go meaning Ollie Juolevi would make his Canucks and NHL debut.
Minnesota would have to make a change with veteran Ryan Suter unable to play after taking the pregame skate. Former Canuck Matt Bartkowski would replace him for the wild. Wait he played for the Canucks?
For the Canucks to advance to the playoffs they would need a big effort from everyone involved including players like Elias Pettersson, Quinn Hughes, and Brock Boeser.
1st Period Canucks Vs Wild Interesting Start
The game did not start the way the Canucks would have wanted. Shot Gun Jake tried to spark his team with an early fight with Ryan Hartman. It wasn't very entertaining but it was nice to see Jake standing up against Hartman after his dirty hit on Elias Pettersson.
Something that we have gotten so used to in this series was Tyler Myers taking penalties and he did not disappoint! 2:48 into the first period he took a roughing minor on Eric Staal. After the Canucks were able to hold Minnesotas powerplay at bay in games 2 and 3 it finally broke. Just 10 seconds in Luke Kunin was able to jam it home short side past Jacob Markstrom. Mats Zuccarello and Jonas Brodin got assists on the goal and the Wild had an early 1-0 lead.
Olli Juolevi didn't look out of place in his limited time in the first period. He also had a shift on the penalty kill which is nice to see. Alex Galchenyuk took a hooking penalty on Loui Eriksson 6 minutes into the game but Vancouver was only able to manage 1 shot. Both teams would feel each other out for several minutes before Vancouver would tie things up.
A nice turn and pass out of his own zone by Chris Tanev was tipped perfectly by Bo Horvat to Tanner Pearson. Pearson was able to snipe it past Alex Stalock 12:52 into the period. It was short-lived unfortunately for the Canucks as the Wild responded right away.
40 seconds was all the game was tied up before the Wild would re-take the lead. Eric Staal was able to roof it short side on Markstrom from Marcus Foligno and Kevin Fiala. Myers would take another penalty before the period was over but Vancouver was able to kill it off and head into the second period down 2-1. There was a lot of work for the Canucks to Advance to The Playoffs.
2nd Period Markstrom Looked Human For The Canucks
The Canucks to advance to the playoffs would need to play better in the second period. Joel Eriksson Ek would make it a 3-1 game 5:32 into the 2nd period. Eriksson Ek would call for the puck behind the Canucks net and get a drop pass from Hughes.
Brodin was able to get it back to Parise whose shot went off Tyler Myers before falling on the stick of Ek. He found the top corner and beat Markstrom for a 2 goal lead.
Matt Dumba took a high sticking penalty on Petey and the Canucks were able to make them pay. Quinn Hughes circled around on the point and fired a shot that went up in the air. Brandon Sutter was credited with the goal but I still think it was Hughes's goal. 3-2 for the Wild but the lead wouldn't last long.
Just a minute 24 seconds later Quinn Hughes got his first official goal. The Vancouver defense was key Friday night offensively in helping The Canucks to advance to the playoffs. J.T. Miller and Petey got the assists on the 3-3 goal.
Miller would make a key block for Vancouver before Antoine Roussel would take a tripping penalty on Marcus Foligno. The Canucks were leading in shots 22-20 but the Wild were dictating play. Nico Sturm rushed down the left side and beat Markstrom on a wrist shot between his arm and body. 4-3 Minnesota.
The Canucks would head into the 3rd period down a goal and a skater as Brock Boeser took a tripping penalty on Matt Dumba. What would the 3rd period bring for the Canucks to advance to the playoffs?
Nervous 3rd Period For The Canucks
The Canucks would have a chance to tie things up at 4 early in the third period. Brandon Sutter had a nice chance on a partial breakaway and was hooked by Jared Spurgeon to stop a real chance. The Vancouver powerplay didn't look very dangerous and they were only able to manage 1 shot with limited zone time.
It was a nervous, exciting, thrilling 3rd period. Things would go back and forth with the wild sitting back and happy to watch the clock tick down. Brock Boeser took a bad holding penalty on Kevin Fiala at 10:18 of the 3rd period. Vancouver killed off the first minute before Fiala had bad luck and took a tripping penalty to take his team off the powerplay. In his defense, he kind of just fell and Alex Adler tripped over his leg but I will take it.
A powerplay would help for the Canucks to advance to the playoffs but they were unable to CAPITALIZE on the opportunity. Area 51 would point that out several times throughout the game.
Vancouver would continue to make their fans nervous until the 14:14 mark of the third period. Some great work by Tanner Pearson on the forecheck and he was able to spin away and get it out front. Right to the Canucks captain who was able to slide it past Stalock to tie things up.
Chris Tanev played a huge part in tonight's game and had an assist on the game tieing goal. We will hear more from him shortly for the Canucks to advance to the playoffs. Vancouver would outshoot the Wild 30-29 through 3 periods but we would need an extra frame to decide things.
Overtime Was Needed For The Canucks To advance To The Playoffs
Things went from bad to worse on the nervous level for Canucks Fans but thankfully we didn't have to wait long to celebrate...
The Canucks to advance to the playoffs after getting things done 11 seconds into overtime. Canucks vs Wild would need an extra period to settle the 4-4 tie but Chris Tanev made sure to get things taken care of quickly.
Vancouver would win the face-off and drive in right away into the Minnesota zone. the puck would make it ways back to Chris Tanev who scored a seeing-eye goal past Alex Stalock with the help of a Brock Boeser screen. The Canucks advance to the playoffs for the first time since 2015.
There was a collective sigh of relief for Canucks nation after this win. It was nervous at times in the 3rd period but a timely goal by Horvat tied things up and forced overtime.
"You have to stick with the process and work hard," said Quinn Hughes after the game. The Canucks did just that 11 high danger chances to the Wilds 6, shots were 31-29 for Vancouver and if Markstrom had of been more on his game it might not have been so nervous. Here is how the teams looked on the heat map Friday night.
I don't know what more can be said about the play of Quinn Hughes that hasn't been said or seen but wow. This kid is doing some amazing things and looking extremely confident on the puck, minus the one plays with Hartman where Myers had to come back and save him. His vision and skating lead to so many great chances for the Canucks as he activates from the point.
Olli Juolevi had a sheltered 6:16 with one shift killing a penalty but didn't look out of place. If Oscar Fantenberg isn't able to go and Jordie Benn isn't back expect Juolevi to get more time in at least the start of the next series.
The Minnesota Wild will head home while the Vancouver Canucks advance to the playoffs. Vancouver will await their opponent but it will be the loser of the Dallas Stars and St Louis Blues game on Saturday. You could tell it was a fired-up team after the game and winners of 3 in a row will start a new series with a team that may not be as fired up as they are.
Sports Talk Line
Vancouver Canucks advance to the playoffs for the first time since 2016 and win a series for the first time since 2011. yes, Kevin Bieksa we all remember when you scored the series win against the San Jose Sharks. "I could throw a pigskin over them mountains", the Uncle Rico of Canucks hockey!
Vancouver should get things going on Tuesday night with times to be determined. One thing we do know if there will still be a full day worth of hockey going on and it should get even more exciting. Make sure to stay tuned to Sports Talk Lines Website and YouTube Channel for the latest highlights and articles on your Vancouver Canucks.