Deja vu all over again for Canucks, who lose 3-2 to Sharks

 

Vancouver blows another third-period lead to lose third straight game

 
 
 
 
San Jose Sharks’ Joel Ward, left, jumps to avoid the puck as Vancouver Canucks goalie Ryan Miller makes the save during the first period of an NHL hockey game in Vancouver, B.C., on Thursday March 3, 2016.
 
 

San Jose Sharks’ Joel Ward, left, jumps to avoid the puck as Vancouver Canucks goalie Ryan Miller makes the save during the first period of an NHL hockey game in Vancouver, B.C., on Thursday March 3, 2016.

Photograph by: DARRYL DYCK, THE CANADIAN PRESS

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The Vancouver Canucks had a one-goal lead entering the third period. What could possibly go wrong?

Quite a bit, actually. As we’ve learned this season, a third-period lead doesn’t mean much for the Canucks, who gave away another game in the final 20 minutes on Thursday night.

The San Jose Sharks got third-period goals from Brent Burns and Patrick Marleau as they rallied the beat the Canucks 3-2 at Rogers Arena.

It marked the 11th time this season the Canucks have lost a game they led after two periods.

“There have been a few too many games this year where we had the lead in the third and we have been sitting back too much,” said winger Daniel Sedin. “We have to learn. It has happened way too many times this year, where they come hard in the third and we have to respond. We have to understand that is when we have to get pucks deep, hold onto pucks down low and get some zone time and get the momentum back.

“There is way too much back and forth. We are playing well for 10 minutes and then they take over for too long.”

Burns scored on a power play 43 seconds into the third to tie the game. His shot from just inside the blue line beat Vancouver goalie Ryan Miller short side. Less than five minutes later, Patrick Marleau finished off a 2-on-1 rush with Joonas Donskoi to give the Sharks the lead.

It was the second time in five days San Jose has come from behind in the third to beat the Canucks. On Sunday, the Sharks scored four unanswered goals in the third to win 4-1.

The Canucks actually had a 2-0 lead after the first period, but the Sharks cut that lead in half midway through the second period on a controversial goal by Tomas Hertl.

Hertl’s stick appeared to be well above the crossbar when he tipped a Burns shot past Miller. The play was reviewed by the NHL situation room, but the goal was allowed to stand after the league said a video review was “inconclusive.”

Miller was seething about the call after the game.

“I just watched the replay and I think it’s a high stick for sure,” Miller said. “I don’t think I have got a high-stick call since I have come here. I don’t know what’s going on. (Martin) Hanzal last year, who’s 6-foot-5, Hertl who is 6-3 and if you watch, it hit the tip of his blade at the apex of his hands.

“I don’t know what the league is looking at. Just because it is (ruled) a goal on the ice, get it right. Or just get rid of the rule. It’s wishy-washy, a big game for us. . .It’s definitely a high stick and they missed it.”

Although the game ended badly for the Canucks, they played one of their best periods of the season in the opening 20 minutes. Vancouver dominated the Sharks, outshooting them 15-7 and built that 2-0 lead.

The new line of Markus Granlund, Sven Baertschi and Jake Virtanen led the way.

Virtanen opened scoring at the 7:14 mark with his sixth of the season on a nice individual effort. Virtanen powered his way down the left wing and tested San Jose Martin Jones with a shot, took the rebound behind the net and then threw a backhand in front that bounced off San Jose forward Joe Pavelski and past Jones.

“Just a shot off the wing, followed it up and got the rebound and tried to find a guy in front,” Virtanen said. “Luckily, it just went in off a skate and in net it went.”

That line struck at again at 18:31 of the first, when Baertschi fought off a check by Sharks defenceman Brenden Dillon and tipped a Dan Hamhuis shot past Jones. Virtanen picked up the second assist on Baertschi’s 13th goal of the season.

But in what has been an all-too-familiar story this season, the Canucks have had trouble holding onto momentum when they do get it. The Sharks came at them hard in the second and were the better team early in the third when the game was on the line.

“We had a good period and you want to keep doing that,” Virtanen said. “It is something you have to learn from. We are young guys still and we have to be consistent throughout the whole game. We’ll be working on that for sure.”

ICE CHIPS

Rookie Brendan Gaunce made his home-ice debut for the Canucks. He skated on a line with Bo Horvat and Linden Vey and had three shots on goal . .San Jose has now beat the Canucks seven straight games at Rogers Arena. . .The loss, Vancouver’s third straight, ended a five-game homestand.

THE DEBRIEF

It isn’t the worst Canucks team of all time, but it may be the lousiest in the third period. Vancouver gagged on another 40-minute lead, allowing easy goals by Brent Burns and Patrick Marleau, pictured, five minutes apart early in the third period to lose 3-2. It was the 11th time in 25 games this season the Canucks lost after leading through two periods, and the second time in five days they blew a late lead over the Sharks. Vancouver led 2-0 halfway through the game on goals by Jake Virtanen and Sven Baertschi.

HOME OF THE LAME

Just 11-16-5 at Rogers Arena, the Canucks, led by head coach Willie Desjardins, pictured, could post their worst home record since joining the NHL 46 years ago. The franchise’s fewest home wins in a full season is 13, achieved in 1976-77 and matched the following season. The Canucks haven’t had less than 20 home wins in a full campaign since 1998-99. They’ll need to win their final nine games in Vancouver to reach that threshold again this season.

CUE THE COLLAPSE

The turning point was a controversial deflection goal by Tomas Hertl, pictured, that cut the Canucks’ 2-0 lead in half at 10:29 of the second period. Ruled a good goal by referees Brad Meier and Dan O’Halloran, replay officials in Toronto did not overturn the call despite replays that appeared to show an upright Hertl contacting the puck near his shoulder. Hertl is 6-2 without skates, which would put his shoulder well above the four-foot-high crossbar.

LINE OUT

Before the opening faceoff, the Canucks acknowledged Vancouver-born linesman Brad Lazarowich, pictured, who after 30 years in the NHL worked his final game in his hometown. Lazarowich, 53, retires later this season. After nearly 2,200 regular season and playoff games, he’ll end his career with a game April 3 in Winnipeg, which is where his NHL officiating career began on Oct. 9, 1986.

NEXT UP

As if blowing two games in a week against the Sharks hasn’t been dispiriting enough, the Canucks will get a chance to do it again Saturday in San Jose. After two of five games between the teams in the final quarter of the season, the Canucks have outscored the Sharks 3-1 through two periods and been humiliated 6-0 in the third. San Jose is 17-4-4 the last two months and now leads the Canucks by 16 points in the Pacific Division.

bziemer@vancouversun.com

imacintyre@postmedia.com

 
 
 
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San Jose Sharks’ Joel Ward, left, jumps to avoid the puck as Vancouver Canucks goalie Ryan Miller makes the save during the first period of an NHL hockey game in Vancouver, B.C., on Thursday March 3, 2016.
 

San Jose Sharks’ Joel Ward, left, jumps to avoid the puck as Vancouver Canucks goalie Ryan Miller makes the save during the first period of an NHL hockey game in Vancouver, B.C., on Thursday March 3, 2016.

Photograph by: DARRYL DYCK, THE CANADIAN PRESS

 
San Jose Sharks’ Joel Ward, left, jumps to avoid the puck as Vancouver Canucks goalie Ryan Miller makes the save during the first period of an NHL hockey game in Vancouver, B.C., on Thursday March 3, 2016.
Vancouver Canucks’ Henrik Sedin, right, of Sweden, checks San Jose Sharks’ Logan Couture during the first period of an NHL hockey game in Vancouver, B.C., on Thursday March 3, 2016.
Vancouver Canucks’ Henrik Sedin, second left, of Sweden, checks San Jose Sharks’ Logan Couture as Sharks’ Nick Spaling, second right, and Canucks’ Dan Hamhuis, right, look on during the first period of an NHL hockey game in Vancouver, B.C., on Thursday March 3, 2016.
Vancouver Canucks’ Jake Virtanen (18) celebrates his goal against the San Jose Sharks during the first period of an NHL hockey game in Vancouver, B.C., on Thursday March 3, 2016.
Vancouver Canucks’ Luca Sbisa, left, of Italy, checks San Jose Sharks’ Nick Spaling during the first period of an NHL hockey game in Vancouver, B.C., on Thursday March 3, 2016.
San Jose Sharks’ Joel Ward, left, jumps to avoid the puck as Vancouver Canucks goalie Ryan Miller makes the save during the first period of an NHL hockey game in Vancouver, B.C., on Thursday March 3, 2016.
Vancouver Canucks’ Jared McCann, right, checks San Jose Sharks’ Dainius Zubrus, of Lithuania, during the first period of an NHL hockey game in Vancouver, B.C., on Thursday March 3, 2016.
A young fan reacts as Vancouver Canucks’ Sven Baertschi, left, of Switzerland, checks San Jose Sharks’ Brenden Dillon into the glass during the second period of an NHL hockey game in Vancouver, B.C., on Thursday March 3, 2016.
Vancouver Canucks’ Ben Hutton, right, reaches for the puck between the legs of San Jose Sharks’ Michael Haley during the first period of an NHL hockey game in Vancouver, B.C., on Thursday March 3, 2016.
San Jose Sharks’ Michael Haley, left, and Vancouver Canucks’ Derek Dorsett fight during the second period of an NHL hockey game in Vancouver, B.C., on Thursday March 3, 2016.
Vancouver Canucks’ Derek Dorsett, back, and San Jose Sharks’ Michael Haley fight during the second period of an NHL hockey game in Vancouver, B.C., on Thursday March 3, 2016.
A San Jose Sharks shot deflects over Vancouver Canucks goalie Ryan Miller and stays out of the net during the second period of an NHL hockey game in Vancouver, B.C., on Thursday March 3, 2016.
San Jose Sharks’ Brent Burns and Vancouver Canucks’ Markus Granland, back, of Finland, collide during the first period of an NHL hockey game in Vancouver, B.C., on Thursday March 3, 2016.
Vancouver Canucks’ Derek Dorsett, top, and San Jose Sharks’ Michael Haley fight during the second period of an NHL hockey game in Vancouver, B.C., on Thursday March 3, 2016.
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
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