Vancouver Canucks 3, Los Angeles Kings 2 – Overtime
In their first utterly meaningless game of the 2021-’22 season, the Vancouver Canucks mostly played like it was their first utterly meaningless game of the season. The LA Kings played along.
We did end up with a very exciting overtime with chances at both ends, ultimately ended by Brock Boeser with 30-seconds remaining.
Spencer Martin earned his second consecutive start and fifth appearance of the season for the Canucks, facing Cal Petersen at the other end. Jonathan Quick will serve as the Kings number-one netminder when they begin the playoffs, but the two have pretty much shared the load during the regular season.
Game subplot: Can the Canucks JT Miller pick up three points over the final two Canucks games to reach 100 points on the season?
Miller tallied an assist, has 98 points, and has the Edmonton Oilers as the last barrier between him and 100.
The NHL stood for …
The ‘No Hit League’ in this one. With one team playing out the short string and the other trying to stay healthy for a first-round playoff series, there wasn’t a whole lot of intensity inside Rogers Arena Thursday night. The hits didn’t keep coming.
Usually in games like this the desire will increase as we get closer to the very end. It’s the competitive nature of the athletes involved. As Canucks Head Coach Bruce Boudreau pointed out after the morning skate, “we want to win, we want to finish ahead of Vegas”, in so many words.
Whether that means we’ll see any physical intensity outside of the final five-minutes remains to be seen.
(Nope. Not really, but the focus and desire to win definitely picked up throughout the third period and into overtime.)
The Vancouver Canucks spent six-minutes of the first period short-handed. The LA Kings failed to score. That includes during a double minor to Tyler Myers for high sticking at the 13:48 mark. The penalty kill showed pride.
There was a 4-on-4 situation in the second period featuring a penalty to Alex Chiasson of the Canucks and former Canucks D-man Alex Edler of the Kings.
The Kings picked up an early PP in the third period with a Vasily Podkolzin trip. They did nothing with it.
The Canucks threatened often with their first power play of the game, including Elias Pettersson back-handing a shot off the post. Brendan Lemieux’s penalty at 4:29 turned into a 5-on-3 for 40-seconds when Carl Grundstrom went off for hooking. Vancouver didn’t tally with the two-man-advantage, but they did get on the board with Grundstrom still in the box.
2nd Period 1-0 Los Angeles – Gabriel Vilardi (5) – Rasmus Kupari, Brendan Lemieux (15:08) Even Strength
((– Off a high cycle in-zone, the shot came from near the right point through a screen and went inside the near post.))
2nd Period 2-0 Los Angeles – Adrian Kempe (35) – Unassisted (18:50) Even Strength
((– Kempe raced into the zone and fired a shot from the slot past defenceman Tyler Myers and just inside the stick-side post.))
3rd Period 2-1 Vancouver – Brock Boeser (22) – Elias Pettersson, JT Miller (6:52) Power Play
((– Boeser absolutely roofed a rocket from the slot.))
3rd Period – 2-2 Vancouver – Alex Chiasson (13) Quinn Hughes, Brad Richardson (14:31) Even Strength
((– Just above the crease, Chiasson chipped the puck on the backhand up, off, and over the sprawled netminder,))
Overtime – 3-2 Vancouver – Brock Boeser (23) Elias Pettersson (4:30) Even Strength – 3-on-3
((– Boeser had two chances in the low slot to rip home the game winner.))
Simmer’s Vancouver Canucks 3 Stars:
3) Brock Boeser – Two goal night including the game winner in overtime.
2) The Canucks Equipment Managers – While the on-ice boys play out the string, these guys are busting their ass, as usual, getting the gear to Edmonton.
1) The Fans – Great spirit, unique energy, and a fun vibe a great majority of the time, despite a tumultuous and ultimately disappointing season.