The Goods: Edged in Philly
It ended up being a new episode. A re-run would have been just fine.
The Vancouver Canucks dropped their first road game of the season losing 5-4 to the Philadelphia Flyers Wednesday night at the Wells Fargo Center.
The Canucks gave up the first goal for the third consecutive game and trailed by two goals before cutting the lead in half to end the first down 2-1. Then Flyers restored the two-goal cushion, only to see Vancouver move to within a goal at 3-2 midway through the game. Cue Philadelphia, another goal and it was another two-goal advantage until the Canucks responded with two straight goals to tie the game up at 4-4 early in the third.
Could it be? A third consecutive third period comeback to at least steal a point in the City of Brotherly Love?
Not on this night at the Flyers earned the win in their home opener with a goal 4:40 into the third period. For the third time this season the Canucks were resilient in fighting back and they nearly completed the comeback again, but Philadelphia responded to nearly every goal against with a goal for.
The Flyers scored 1:01, 1:13 and 1:51 directly after the Canucks hit the scoreboard.
Mikael Samuelsson, Henrik Sedin, Chris Higgins and Daniel Sedin all scored for the Canucks in their second game of a four-game road trip; the first of back-to-back games in as many nights had seven Vancouver players collected at least a point and five had multi-point outings, including Alex Burrows and Alex Edler.
The Sedins continued their torrid start to the season with a goal and an assist each giving them five points each, good for second in NHL scoring. It’s early, but it’s awesome.
Roberto Luongo remains winless on the season in two starts after giving up five goals on 27 shots; two of those goals came on first period penalties to the Canucks. Vancouver finished 2-for-7 on the power play, but failed to score on four straight man advantages in the final 15 minutes of play.
Just like old times. Minus the mullet.
It was a little odd seeing Flyers forward Jaromir Jagr back in an NHL uniform, then it got downright annoying when he began displaying the skills that have him ninth all-time in career points with over 1,600.
The five-time Art Ross Trophy winner was thwarted on four shots, but had an assist for his second point of the season and first point against the Canucks in his last three outings.
That last sentence may lead you to believe that Jagr has struggled against Vancouver throughout his career, yet it’s quite the contrary.
Jagr has 12 goals and now 20 assists for 32 points in 23 games versus the Canucks, with two power play goals, eight power play assists and three game-winning goals.
The last time Jagr lit the lamp against Vancouver was on February 2, 2004 in a 4-3 New York Rangers win. Jagr had a two-point night, the start of an eight-game point streak; if this seems like forever ago, it’s because it was. Dan Cloutier was still in net for the Canucks and Mark Messier was Jagr’s Rangers teammate.
The good news: no more facing Jagr this season. Unless…nah, it’s too early to go there.
STAT ATTACK-Only two Canucks, Manny Malhotra and Andrew Alberts, failed to test Ilya Bryzgalov at least once on the night. Vancouver had a season-best 40 shots.
-Cody Hodgson led the Canucks in shots with six, a new career best that now has him at 20 career shots.
-Marco Sturm has one shot in three games.
-Alex Burrows had 24:37 in ice time, he was second amongst the Canucks behind only defenceman Alex Edler's 24:41. Combined the Alex duo put in a whopping 49:18 and don't forget Vancouver plays again Thursday night.
-In 111 games against Philadelphia, Vancouver is 29-69-13 all-time.
-Through three outings, Vancouver has 20 first period shots, 35 in the second frame and 44 in the third; those shots have led to three first period goals, three in the second and four in the third.
-The Canucks have given up the first goal in all three games to open the 2011-12 season and taken at least three penalties in the first period of each game thus far.
- @BenKosciuk, following an Aaron Volpatti holding penalty in the 2nd period.
Philadelphia has won all three games, 7-3 in 1972-73, 6-3 in 2000-01 and 5-4 Wednesday night.
Philadelphia since losing in overtime there Nov. 13, 2003.