Vancouver Canucks' forward Dale Weise pastes Jason Demers of the San Jose Sharks into the boards during Tuesday's National Hockey League game at Rogers Arena in Vancouver.
Photograph by: Darryl Dyck, The Canadian Press
VANCOUVER — The Vancouver Canucks have now lost as many games as they have won this season.
And if they don’t get their power play going, things could get even worse.
The Canucks lost for the fourth time in their last five games Tuesday night, dropping a 3-2 shootout decision to the San Jose Sharks at Rogers Arena.
“Our power play was better today, but if your power play is minus-one it’s tough to win games,” said Vancouver captain Henrik Sedin.
“We have to start scoring goals. That’s the bottom line.”
The Canuck power play went 0-for-5 Tuesday and surrendered a short-handed goal to the Sharks’ Adam Burish early in the second period that gave San Jose a 2-0 lead.
Vancouver is now 0-for-15 with the man advantage in the last six games.
“When you are down 2-0 it’s tough to come back, but if you look at the game overall I thought we played good enough to win,” Henrik said. “But again our power play should have come through for us late in the third and in overtime.”
The Canucks had a 4-on-3 power play in OT, but could not beat San Jose goalie Antti Niemi, who was brilliant all night.
“I thought it was a hell of a game. I mean, it was hard fought from start to finish,” said Vancouver coach Alain Vigneault. “We were down by two goals, we battled back, it was a great second goal from Jannik Hansen, the five guys on the ice won a whole bunch of small battles on the walls, screening their goaltender and we tied it up.
“In the third period and the overtime our power play had some great looks and their goaltender made some great saves. Then they had some great chances and our guys blocked a few shots and our goaltender made some great saves and it went to a shootout.”
Joe Pavelski scored the winner in a four-round shootout, beating Vancouver goalie Cory Schneider with a backhand.
“We worked hard, we put a lot of pucks to the net, had some opportunities late, but Niemi played a real good game,” Schneider said.
The Canucks fell to 11-7-4 — 11 wins and 11 losses. San Jose improved to 11-6-4.
“I think tonight we deserved a better fate, but overall our record isn’t as good of late,” said Vancouver winger Mason Raymond.
“I think we are playing some good hockey. I think we also know we can play better hockey. That comes from within the room. We know that as a club and as a group collectively that we can be better.”
Niemi was terrific as the Canucks peppered him with 38 shots. He robbed Alex Burrows and Henrik Sedin on a Canuck power play late in the third.
Niemi stopped all 17 shots the Canucks fired his way in the first period and did a nice job of controlling his rebounds all night.
At the other end of the ice, it was a rebound that led to Scott Gomez’s first goal of the season. Schneider stopped a long shot by Marc-Edouard Vlasic, but gave up an equally long rebound. Gomez pounced on it and put a shot through a sea of bodies that beat Schneider high to the stick side at 7:42 of the first.
The Sharks made it 2-0 when Burish scored on a short-handed breakaway at 4:43 of the second period. Burish was sprung free after a Henrik Sedin pass was picked off by San Jose defenceman Brad Stuart, who threaded a pass to Burish.
He beat Schneider glove side from just inside the blue-line. It was one that Schneider would like back.
But the Canucks battled back. Henrik Sedin cut the San Jose lead in half at 13:23 of the second, when he was the recipient of a pass from brother Daniel that bounced off Sharks’ defenceman Matt Irwin and onto Henrik’s stick. He beat Niemi with a backhand from the edge of the crease.
Hansen tied it six minutes later after a great shift with Raymond and Chris Higgins. The trio, along with defencemen Dan Hamhuis and Jason Garrison, controlled the puck in the San Jose zone for a lengthy stretch before Raymond delivered a back-pass to Hansen. He beat Niemi short side with a wrist shot from the edge of the left circle.
“That took five guys,” Raymond said. “Everybody was chipping in. D’s were holding pucks in, guys were working hard and it finished off with Higgie making a great screen that enabled Jannik to get a great shot off. It paid off and got us right back into the game heading into the third.”
ICE CHIPS: The Canucks were scheduled to leave Wednesday morning on a rather unusual three-game road that makes two stops in Columbus, with a game sandwiched in-between in Minnesota ... Defenceman Keith Ballard left the game in the third period with a charley-horse and did not return.
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