The Vancouver Canucks snapped out of their goal-scoring funk in a big way Sunday night. They scored seven goals. Trouble is, two of them went into their own net. It didn’t matter as Vancouver hung on for a 5-4 overtime win over the Phoenix Coyotes at Rogers Arena. No one was expecting the kind of goal-fest that erupted Sunday night. The Canucks and Coyotes have both had trouble scoring this season. It was one of those nights when it seemed everything went in. “It was a strange game on both sides,” said interim Vancouver coach Mike Sullivan, who is now 2-1-0 filling in for the suspended John Tortorella. “It seemed like the nature of the way the goals were being scored, it was bizarre. I think there might have been one goal that was actually shot in the net. It seemed like everything was a deflection off a stick, off a skate, off something. So it was just one of those games for both sides. Fortunately for us, we were able to get two points out of it.” How bizarre was it? Well, Phoenix forward Antoine Vermette got a hat trick, but only put one goal past Vancouver goalie Roberto Luongo himself. The others were deposited into the Vancouver net by Luongo and Ryan Kesler. “That is a free hat trick right there,” Luongo said. “At least he buried the last one to make it somewhat justifiable. It was just one of those nights where it felt like the puck was finding ways in. That is going to happen from time to time. The good thing is we got the win. That’s all that matters.” It was an important game for the Canucks, who had slipped into eighth place in the West. The win moved them a point up on the Minnesota Wild and they are just one point behind the slumping Los Angeles Kings. They are also five points clear of the ninth-place Coyotes, who outshot Vancouver 33-25. Defenceman Kevin Bieksa scored his second of the night at 2:15 of overtime to give the Canucks the win. Chris Higgins did the dirty work along the boards and Brad Richardson found a pinching Bieksa in front. Bieksa beat Phoenix goalie Mike Smith on his own rebound. “It wasn’t your typical game,” Bieksa said. “We have been struggling to score goals lately so let’s take some positives out of it. We put five in. Some guys got on the scoresheet and we found a way to win when it came down to it.
Goals gone wild as Canucks edge Coyotes in OT
Vancouver Sun | Jan 27