This series has been anything but how the Vancouver Canucks expected it to go. For a team with arguably two of the top goaltenders, they’ve been plagued all season but inconsistent play, and tonight that was on display. With Cory Schneider making his first appearance of the series, he needed a solid game to energize his players. The only players energized tonight were the Sharks, to the tune of a 5-2 victory and a commanding 3-0 series lead.
Considering how this game ended up, it got off to what can be described as not the quickest start in the books. A solid first period by the goaltenders at either end of the ice, but offensively, Vancouver was just nowhere to be found. At least not to the level that the Sharks were engaging. That engagement paid off for them, getting late in the first period, on an extended power play, Joe Pavelski would put one behind Cory Schneider erupting the fans in San Jose. The Sharks would take their 1-0 lead into the first intermission.
The second period looked like the unwinding was beginning to happen. The Canucks managed to put one in the net this period, though not before Joe Pavelski would strike again. Henrik Sedin and Daniel Sedin finally got some life breathed into this in this series as they set up Alexandre Burrows, who put home his first, making this a 2-1 game heading towards the first. A Jannik Hansen penalty with 15 seconds left in the second would end up unravelling the Canucks team completely in this game.
1:40 into the third period, Logan Couture puts home his second of the series, on the PP, giving the sharks a 3-1 lead. 9 seconds later Patrick Marleau scores and it’s 4-1 Sharks. 3 Minutes later, on another Power Play, Couture scores again, giving the sharks a 5-1 edge and that was the end of Schneider’s night. Roberto Luongo would come in and charge up the team. However that late in the game it was just not enough. Facing 10 shots in the last 15 minutes, Luongo would turn them all aside and absorb the loss in his stats. Dan Hamhuis would put home one for the Canucks, and this game would end 5-2. The Sharks take a huge lead in the series 3-0, putting the Canucks on the verge of being swept for the first time since 2001.
SENSHOT 3 STARS
1 – Logan Couture
2 – Joe Pavelski
3 – Antti Niemi