Third Time Lucky?

May 25, 2011 by ootmar  
Filed under Vancouver Automotive Blog

This time, the Orca ate the Shark!

In 1994, Greg Adams scored for the Vancouver Canucks 14 seconds into the second Overtime to bring the Canucks to the Stanely Cup Finals against the New York Ranger.  Seventeen years later, to the date, Bieksa scores the game winning goal against the San Jose Sharks to bring the Vancouver Canucks to the Stanley Cup Finals. This time, there was no Greg Adams, no Trevor Linden, and no Pavel Bure.  This time, it was Henrik Sedin, Daniel Sedin, and Alexandre Burrows.  Three different players, but three players that the opposition couldn’t handle.  San Jose had no answers for the top line of the Canucks.  Even with Ryan Kesler, the most dominant player of the playoffs, suffering an injury in the second period, the “Come-Back-Kids” were able to put away the Sharks.  

Alexander Burrows opened the scoring at the 8:02 mark of the first to put the Canucks up 1-0 at the end of the first period. Keith Ballard accidentally knocked the puck out of the air with his hand off a Patrick Marleau shot to tie the game midway through the second. Devin Setoguchi scored just 24 seconds into the third period to put the Sharks up 2-1 in the third period, but that wasn’t enough. With 14 seconds left in the third, Ryan Kesler tips in a Henrik Sedin shot to tie it up and send it into overtime.  The first overtime solved nothing and heading into the second overtime, the San Jose outshot Vancouver 52-29 but could not put the clincher past Roberto Luongo.  (the most shots Luongo has ever faced is 72 shots back in 1997 against the Dallas Stars.)  Luongo finished with 54 saves.  

 Kevin Bieksa scored at the 10:18 mark of the second overtime to  end the game and hand Antti Niemi his first Stanley Cup series loss of his career. 

For the third time in their 40 year history, the Vancouver Canucks have advanced to the Stanley Cup Finals.  Their first appearance was in 1982 when they lost four straight to the New York Islanders.  The second time was when they lost to the New York Rangers in 1994 in seven games.  Maybe, just maybe, third times the charm?