Vancouver was playing the dump-and-chase game to start the third, making sure to keep five men back while they waited for the Blackhawks to make a mistake. It was a lot of back and forth with little scoring opportunity through the first five or six minutes for Vancouver, until Höglander found some open ice and set up Hughes for a wrist shot that almost beat Lankinen.
A few minutes later, Hughes was able to draw a tripping penalty on Dominik Kubalik after streaking into the offensive zone. On the next play, Hughes fired a shot on net that rung off the right post and bounced out. John Shorthouse was almost certain that the puck had crossed the line, but the score remained 3-1.
The Canucks tightened their defence shortly after, making sure to execute a responsible third period while running out the clock. Vancouver leaned on Demko to make the odd save here and there but, for the most part, they were a lot better than they were in Buffalo the other night.
With just over three minutes remaining in the game, Chicago was awarded one last powerplay chance, thanks to a tripping penalty from Garland. The Canucks killed off the penalty and sprung Garland out of the box to seal the deal with an empty-net goal.
Vancouver skated away with a 4-1 victory in the end, improving their record to 2-2-1.
The Canucks put forth a much better team effort after their dismal 5-2 loss to the Buffalo Sabres on Tuesday night. The defence came together at the right time, helping Demko earn a quiet win where he didn’t need to be the team’s best player for once.
Vancouver will make their way to Seattle to complete their six-game road trip. Can the Canucks find one more win and return to Rogers Arena above .500? Tune in on Saturday night to find out!
Puck drop is set for 7:00pm PST.
What were your thoughts on Thursday night’s victory in Chicago? Make sure to drop a comment below!