Canucks 3, Ducks 2
PIC OF THE GAME
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ANAHEIM, Calif. (AP) -The two fresh faces in the Vancouver Canucks dressing room were easy to spot. Lockers displaying pucks with a piece of tape that said: "1st NHL goal" gave Mason Raymond and Jason Jaffray away.
The pair of injury fill-ins assisted on each other's goals, and the Canucks - without forward Brendan Morrison - beat the Anaheim Ducks 3-2 on Wednesday night.
"It was a great feeling to see the look on Mason's face when he got his first one out of the way," Jaffray said. "And when that puck went in for me, I could have jumped five, six feet in the air. It's definitely a moment I'll always remember."
It was the first time teammates scored their first NHL goals in a game since Ducks forwards Drew Miller and Petteri Wirtanen also did it in Anaheim on Oct. 17.
"They called two young players up from the minors and both of them made a contribution," Ducks coach Randy Carlyle said. "That's huge when you can have young guys step in and get on the score sheet for you."
The pair, along with goalie Drew MacIntyre, flew in from Manitoba Tuesday after the Canucks lost Roberto Luongo
, Brendan Morrison and Brad Isbister to injuries.
Morrison's 542-game playing streak, the longest current run in the NHL, ended when the 32-year-old center was forced out of the lineup by a wrist injury that will require surgery.
The streak that began on Feb. 27, 2000, is the 11th-longest in league history. Calgary defenseman Cory Sarich now has the longest current consecutive-game streak at 419.
"It's not great for the Canucks to hear that he's going to be out for a while," Jaffray said. "I'm definitely not a guy who's going to fill his shoes, but I'm a guy that's been brought in to maybe soften the blow a little bit. If I can provide offense and create scoring chances, that's kind of what I do."
Isbister sat out because of a groin injury sustained during Monday's 4-2 loss at Los Angeles, and Luongo sat out his second straight game because of a rib injury sustained Nov. 2 at Minnesota.
Despite the lack of experience, the Canucks certainly didn’t look lost on the Pond – at least early on.
Jaffray, making his NHL debut, chipped the puck past defenseman Francois Beauchemin in the neutral zone and threw a cross-ice pass to Raymond, who snapped a one-timer past Jean-Sebastien Giguere at 17:35 of the first period.
"It's always nice to get that first one under your belt. There was a little bit of relief there," Raymond said. "Jaffray made a great pass to me, and all I had to do was put it in the net. It's something I'll always cherish."
Without his 33 saves and his 3rd-period heroics the Canucks head to San Jose on a three-game slide.
For the record, CDC doesn't pick these. Pronger had two pts - and in ANA, that's enough for 2nd star.
Not only scores the game-winner in his NHL debut, but sets up Raymond for HIS first NHL goal. Here's your star right here poeple.
Raymond played in nine games his first time up with the Canucks this season before he was sent back to the minors.
"He has amazing speed and an NHL shot. It was just a matter of time for him," Sanford said. "Maybe going back to Manitoba got him geared up to get back here, as it always does to all of us who have been through it. But by no means did he look out of place the first time he was up here."
made it 2-0 just 65 seconds after Raymond's goal, beating Giguere after stealing the puck from Chris Kunitz in the slot.
Jaffray gave Vancouver a three-goal cushion at 4:54 of the second period.
"That far exceeds my expectations, to get regular shifts with Taylor Pyatt and Mason Raymond and also get a chance to play on the power play," Jaffray said. "It couldn't have happened any better for me, to get a goal and an assist. It seemed like all the waiting was definitely worth it."
It wasn’t all candy and frosting for the Canucks though. The Ducks pulled within two shortly after Jaffray’s marker, and got another one early in the third from Todd Bertuzzi, before hammering the Canucks in the third.
Anaheim out shot Vancouver 16-1, and would’ve tied the game if it weren’t for the heroics of Curtis Sanford, who looked every bit the goalie who’s haunted the Canucks the past two season as a member of the St. Louis Blues.
Sanford stopped 34 shots, including a breakaway by Todd Marchant with about 10 1/2 minutes left in the second period and Vancouver leading 3-1. Sanford is 4-1 in five games with the Canucks.
"It feels good just to be able to contribute and to be relied upon to make big saves," said the former St. Louis Blues goalie, who signed a one-year, $600,000 contract in July.
The Ducks, who knocked the Canucks out of the playoffs last season in five game, have now lost twice to their West Coast foes. Luongo shut them out in a 4-0 win on Nov. 27 in Vancouver.
With the win, the Canucks a two-game skid and have now won 10 games on the road this season.
Notes: C Andy McDonald played in his 276th consecutive game for the Ducks and broke Samuel Pahlsson's franchise record, which ended when Pahlsson missed the start of this season due to a sports hernia. ... Vancouver was 0-for-4 on the power play. It was only the third time in 20 games the Ducks didn't allow a goal while short-handed. ... Anaheim has given up a first-period goal in eight straight games. ... The Canucks are 14-0 when leading after two periods, and 0-10-1 when trailing after 40 minutes. ... Drew MacIntyre served as Sanford's backup after being recalled from Manitoba.
|Three star selections