Canucks 2 Oilers 0
VANCOUVER — Roberto Luongo made 27 saves for his first shutout of the season and the Vancouver Canucks blanked the Edmonton Oilers 2-0 Sunday.
Luongo’s 21st shutout as a Canuck moved him past Kirk McLean as the all-time franchise leader.
Luongo was at his best when Edmonton had a five-on-three power play for one minute 32 seconds midway through the first period.
He got his glove on a Patrick O’Sullivan slapshot and then foiled Shawn Horcoff on the rebound, came across the crease to thwart Dustin Penner and corralled an Ales Hemsky shot from the face-off circle to his right.
Rookie Michael Grabner opened the scoring with his second goal in the last three games. The 22-year-old native of Villach, Austria now has five points his first six NHL games.
After a poor pre-season, the Canucks’ 2006 first-round draft choice was demoted to the minors and not expected back any time soon. But Grabner got a second chance after perennial top scorer Daniel Sedin was sidelined four to six weeks with a broken foot, and he is making the best of it.
Henrik Sedin, with his first goal in six games, also scored for Vancouver (6-5-0) as the Canucks recorded their third straight victory before a sellout crowd of 18,818 at General Motors Place.
With the win, the hosts evened their season series with Edmonton at 1-1. The flu-ridden Oilers (6-4-1) suffered their second loss in two nights.
The Canucks, missing six regulars, continued to struggle offensively at even strength. But Vancouver’s potent power play, which ranks among the league’s best, again atoned for the offensive inefficiency.
The Canucks converted one of four man-advantage opportunities while the Oilers were blanked on their six chances. Vancouver led 1-0 and 2-0 by periods.
The Canucks outshot the Oilers 29-27.
Grabner opened the scoring at 17:51 of the first as he deflected home Christian Ehrhoff’s point shot during a power play.
About two minutes later, Edmonton goaltender Jeff Deslauriers robbed Alexandre Bolduc as he tried to one-time a rebound. Luongo was shaken up at 5:41 as Edmonton tough guy knocked him over during an Oilers power play, but the Canucks goaltender stayed in the game after laying on the ice momentarily.
Near the eight-minute mark, the Vancouver goaltender foiled O’Sullivan again, this time on a wrist shot from the wing that he froze in his mid-section.
Henrik Sedin put the Canucks ahead 2-0 midway through the second on a mid-air deflection of Mikael Samuelsson’s seemingly lazy wrist shot from the point.