After mostly standing pat for much of this playoff series, the Canucks really made some changes in Game 6. The good ones are something to carry over to Game 7 – where a loss after leading the series 3-0 will go down as the biggest choke job in franchise history. The most glaring one, of course, was starting Cory Schneider, but coach Alain Vigneault also refurbished the Ryan Kesler line. The changes included taking Alex Burrows off the Sedins line on one wing and plucking Mason Raymond off the third line for the other side. The trio not only checked Hawks captain Jonathan Toews into the ice – he finished minus-2 with no points – but also outscored their line four points (1-3) to one assist. Burrows broke out of a playoff scoring funk with a goal and two assists, while Raymond created Kevin Bieksa's short-lived 3-2 go-ahead goal early in the third period. Kesler was probably the best of the bunch, but was held off the scoresheet. All three were excellent on the penalty kill as well, helping to keep the Hawks off the board on four power play attempts, including a lengthy two-and advantage in the second period. Both Burrows and Raymond have played with Kesler before so the chemistry was familiar. "We felt we had to play a good game as a line," said Burrows. "With those two guys they've got a tremendous amount of speed and we used that strength and I thought we did a pretty good job against their big players, but we still need to pick it up another notch." Burrows is adamant the team can rebound mentally after dropping the last three games of the Western Conference quarterfinal.
Burrows, Kesler, Raymond line a change that worked despite overtime loss
Vancouver Province | Apr 25