Canucks snuff Flames to even series

Daniel Sedin and Chris Higgins snapped long playoff goal droughts and Eddie Lack made 22 saves to pick up the first post-season victory of his career Friday as the Vancouver Canucks downed the Calgary Flames 4-1 to even their Western Conference quarter-final at a game apiece.

VANCOUVER — Daniel Sedin and Chris Higgins snapped long playoff goal droughts and Eddie Lack made 22 saves to pick up the first post-season victory of his career Friday as the Vancouver Canucks downed the Calgary Flames 4-1 to even their Western Conference quarter-final at a game apiece.

Vancouver rookie Ronalds Kenins and Radim Vrbata, into an empty net, also scored and Alexandre Burrows added two assists for the Canucks, who snapped a seven-game losing streak at home in the playoffs dating back to the 2011 Stanley Cup final.

Kris Russell scored for the Flames, who got 26 saves from Jonas Hiller. Calgary still earned a split after winning Wednesday’s opener and will host Game 3 on Sunday. Karri Ramo replaced Hiller late in the third and finished with three saves.

The game degenerated into a full line brawl late in the third with fights erupting all over the ice deep in the Vancouver zone after a whistle.

In what Daniel Sedin described as a “must-win game” earlier in the day, the Canucks came out flying and grabbed the lead just 2:56 into the first period in front of a raucous and towel-waving crowd at Rogers Arena.

Calgary’s Deryk Engelland blew a tire inside his own zone, allowing Henrik Sedin an opening to feed his twin brother, who roofed a shot on Hiller for his first playoff goal since Game 2 of the 2011 Stanley Cup final — a stretch of 13 contests.

The Canucks, who lost consecutive games in regulation just once after the all-star break, doubled the lead at 7:06 on the power play when Higgins snapped a playoff scoring slump of his own by banging home a loose puck from the slot. The goal was his first in the post-season since Game 2 of the 2011 Western Conference semifinal — a span of 20 games — and his first point in 16 playoff contests.

Apart from its terrible recent playoff home record, Vancouver had also lost six straight in the post-season and 11 of its last 12 prior to Friday.

Lack faced just three shots in the first, but had to defend himself in the second after making a save off a scramble in front. Brandon Bollig piled into the Vancouver goalie in a scrum only to see Lack respond with blocker punches in the melee as fans chanted “Eddie! Eddie!”

Yannick Weber came close to making it 3-0 for Vancouver with 5:45 left in the second when his shot from the point rang off the post behind Hiller.

Calgary came from behind to win when trailing after 40 minutes an impressive 10 times this season and accomplished the same feat in Game 1, but Kenins scored his the first playoff goal of his career 2:17 into the third before Russell buried his second of the series for Calgary at 16:26 on a power play to cut the lead to 3-1.

Vrbata scored into an empty net with 2:01 remaining before all 10 skaters dropped their gloves, including Vancouver’s Brad Richardson taking on Calgary’s Matt Stajan and Engelland squaring off with the Canucks’ Derek Dorsett.

Notes: Game 4 goes Tuesday in Calgary. … The Flames are without five regulars, including injured captain and No. 1 defenceman Mark Giordano.

Just Posted

Mayor Rick Bonnett. (Screenshot)
WATCH: Ponoka council calls on gov’t to support rural small businesses

Ponoka council is calling on the provincial government to increase funding to… Continue reading

Pumpjacks draw oil out of the ground near Olds, Alta., Thursday, July 16, 2020. A new report suggests the economic impact of the pandemic led to a massive increase in federal aid to Canada's oil patch. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jeff McIntosh
Alberta economy ‘still reeling,’ says ATB Financial

Alberta’s economy is still feeling the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic and… Continue reading

Ella Stoner, five, is ready to cut off her hair and donate it to A Child’s Voice Foundation. (Photo by Lauren Stoner Photography)
Central Alberta girl to donate her ‘princess hair’ to A Child’s Voice Foundation

A five-year-old girl from Rimbey has never had a haircut before. Now,… Continue reading

Asymptomatic testing will now be available for "priority groups" who are most likely to spread the COVID-19 virus to vulnerable or at-risk populations. File photo by THE CANADIAN PRESS
Alberta adds 1,195 new COVID-19 cases Saturday

Red Deer has dropped to 760 active cases

Lacombe-Ponoka MLA Ron Orr
Central Alberta MLAs comment on UCP members kicked out of caucus

A pair of central Alberta MLAs have commented on the two United… Continue reading

Maj.-Gen. Dany Fortin, vice-president of logistics and operations at the Public Health Agency of Canada, participates in a news conference on the COVID-19 pandemic in Ottawa, on Friday, Jan. 15, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Justin Tang
Feds face growing calls for answers after general overseeing vaccine effort sidelined

OTTAWA — The federal Liberal government is facing growing calls for answers… Continue reading

Conservative MP Ron Liepert rises during Question Period on Parliament Hill, Friday, March 10, 2017 in Ottawa. Ron Liepert says these days, the phone calls and emails from people wanting to talk about his party's climate plan have slowed. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Justin Tang
Alberta MP pitches Conservative carbon price with a 24-pack of Pilsner

OTTAWA — Ron Liepert says these days, the phone calls and emails… Continue reading

A sign marks Stairs Place in the Hydrostone district in the North end of Halifax on Thursday, May 13, 2021. The street was named for William Grant Stairs, a Canadian explorer from Halifax who helped lead some of the most controversial expeditions through the African continent. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Andrew Vaughan
Where the streets have explorers’ names, some Halifax residents call for change

HALIFAX — When builders created Halifax’s distinctive Hydrostone neighbourhood more than a… Continue reading

Riley Oldford, 16, suffers from cerebral palsy. He was the first youth in the Northwest Territories to get a COVID-19 vaccine. Here he receives the needle from nurse practitioner Janie Neudorf in Yellowknife on Thursday May 6, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Bill Braden
People with disabilities even more alone during pandemic: cerebral palsy spokeswoman

YELLOWKNIFE — Riley Oldford is usually out playing sledge hockey or hanging… Continue reading

Poached trees that were taken recently on Vancouver Island in the Mount Prevost area near Cowichan, B.C. are shown on Sunday, May 10, 2021. Big trees, small trees, dead trees, softwoods and hardwoods have all become valuable targets of tree poachers in British Columbia as timber prices hit record levels. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jen Osborne.
Tree poaching from public forests increasing in B.C. as lumber hits record prices

VICTORIA — Big trees, small trees, dead trees, softwoods and hardwoods have… Continue reading

Washington Capitals left wing Alex Ovechkin (8) comes in to celebrate with right wing Tom Wilson (43), right wing T.J. Oshie (77) and defenseman Justin Schultz (2), after Oshie's overtime goal in Game 1 of an NHL hockey Stanley Cup first-round playoff series against the Boston Bruins, Saturday, May 15, 2021, in Washington. The Capitals won 3-2. (AP Photo/Alex Brandon)
Nic Dowd scores in OT, Capitals beat Bruins 3-2 in Game 1

Capitals 3 Bruins 2 (OT) (Washington leads series 1-0) WASHINGTON (AP) —… Continue reading

Vancouver Canucks' Zack MacEwen (71), Travis Boyd (72) and Jimmy Vesey (24) celebrate a goal against the Edmonton Oilers during third period NHL action in Edmonton on Saturday, May 15, 2021.THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jason Franson
Big third period lifts Vancouver Canucks to 4-1 victory over Edmonton Oilers

Canucks 4 Oilers 1 EDMONTON — Matthew Highmore scored twice in the… Continue reading

A vial of the Medicago vaccine sits on a surface. CARe Clinic, located in Red Deer, has been selected to participate in the third phase of vaccine study. (Photo courtesy www.medicago.com)
Canada’s vaccine rollout operation won’t miss a beat with new military leader: expert

DARTMOUTH — The sudden departure of the senior military officer in charge… Continue reading

Most Read