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Linden lifts Canucks past Stars in Game Seven

Apr 24, 2007 - 8:23 AM
VANCOUVER, British Columbia (Ticker) -- Trevor Linden's big-game experience paid off in the biggest game.

Linden scored the go-ahead goal with 13 minutes to play and the Vancouver Canucks added a pair of empty-net tallies in knocking off the Dallas Stars, 4-1, in Game Seven of their Western Conference quarterfinal series.

Roberto Luongo made 19 saves and Henrik Sedin scored the tying goal in the second period as the Canucks advanced to play the second-seeded Anaheim Ducks in the conference semifinals.

Having blown a 3-1 series lead and getting shut out in back-to-back games by Stars goaltender Marty Turco, Vancouver snapped a six-game streak in which it had failed to close out an opponent.

"It's the type of game that's significant for this season for us," Canucks captain Markus Naslund said. "We've had to work for everything and I thought when we work hard, we're tough to beat. And I think that's a perfect example of that tonight."

The Canucks did it behind Linden, the No. 2 overall pick of the franchise in 1988 who had made a habit of thriving in Game Seven situations.

With the scored tied at 1-1 and Vancouver on the power play, Linden tipped a shot from Mattias Ohlund that pinballed between the pads of Turco before trickling over the goalline.

"I knew I tipped it between his legs but I wasn't sure if it had enough to get over," Linden said. "I didn't see it 'til much after, I didn't even know if it touched the back of the net or not."

It was Linden's 34th career playoff goal, tying him with Pavel Bure for the most in franchise history.

"I thought Trevor did what I expect from him and what his teammates expect and, probably most important, what he expects from himself," Canucks coach Alain Vigneault said. "He's been a great player in this league for a long time and he's got a lot of experience and we needed that experience to come out."

Linden also added an assist to give him 12 points for his career in Game Sevens, putting him five ahead of New York Rangers captain Jaromir Jagr for the all-time lead among active players.

"It's one of the things I've always enjoyed, the playoffs and I've gotten some breaks," Linden said. "Tonight was a great opportunity to play with Daniel (Sedin) and Henrik on the power play and I guess through a long career you get opportunities in Game Seven and for me I've just been able to get some breaks."

The Stars felt that the Canucks too many breaks from the officials. Vancouver had 10 power-play opportunities, double that of the Stars.

Bridging the second and third periods, Dallas was whistled for seven penalties to Vancouver's one, a big reason why the Canucks had a 14-4 edge in shots on goal in the middle session.

"It's just astonishing to me how the standard can change," Stars coach Dave Tippett said. "That was a different refereed game than the first six, that's for sure. It's just baffling. It's Game Seven, let the players decide it."

"With the penalty trouble, it took a lot of guys out of the game and we had a lot of guys killing penalties," Stars center Mike Modano said. "When you're doing that, it's a tough way to score."

The Stars had several chances to get the equalizer following Linden's tally. Just three minutes later, Stu Barnes ripped a one-timer from the bottom of the right circle that Luongo managed to knock down and corral.

"I got a shot away and I actually thought for a second that it was in," Barnes said. "It was a heck of a save. Its disappointing."

Modano had an even better chance with four minutes to play, blasting a shot that beat Luongo but rang off the crossbar.

"It's a game of inches and you've gotta love the opportunity - that scenario with the puck on your stick and just a couple inches away from tying it up," Modano said. "You're gonna see that for a while, and this summer picture that puck a couple inches away."

Taylor Pyatt put the game out of reach with an empty-net tally with 1:03 to play and Bryan Smolinski added another one 16 seconds later for the final margin.

Joel Lundqvist tallied to give the Stars a 1-0 lead after one period. Using defenseman Kevin Bieksa as a screen, he beat Luongo glove side on a wrist shot with 3:28 left in the period.

Henrik Sedin, on the power play, knotted it with 4:48 to play in the middle session brilliant pass from his twin brother Daniel. Facing the left boards, Daniel backhanded a blind pass across the crease to Henrik, who swept it into the net.

"Great play by Danny," Henrik Sedin said. "I don't know how he really saw me but great pass and I don't think Marty (Turco) really knew that was coming."

It was the first points from both Sedins since Game One and ended Turco's scoreless streak at 165 minutes, 42 seconds. Turco made 28 saves.

"He gave us a chance to win every game," Tippett said of Turco. "That's all you can ask from your goaltender. I thought the goaltending in this series was phenomenal. People can talk about a lack of scoring, but when you look at two goaltenders with a save percentage of over .950 in a series, I don't think there's a lack of chances, that's just great goaltending."








  • PLAYOFFS
    NHL FINAL 1ST 2ND 3RD TOTAL
    --- --- --- -----
    DALLAS 1 0 0 1
    VANCOUVER 0 1 3 4 FINAL
    GOAL SCORING:
    1ST PRD: DAL - JOEL LUNDQVIST 2 (JEFF HALPERN, STU BARNES) 16:32
    2ND PRD: VAN - (PP) HENRIK SEDIN 2 (DANIEL SEDIN) 15:12
    3RD PRD: VAN - (PP) TREVOR LINDEN 2 (MATTIAS OHLUND, HENRIK SEDIN)
    7:00
    VAN - (EN) TAYLOR PYA

    Apr 23 11:48 PM


  • PLAYOFFS
    NHL DALLAS 1
    VANCOUVER 4
    3RD PRD: VAN - (EN) BRYAN SMOLINSKI 2 (TREVOR LINDEN) 19:13

    Stars vs. CanucksApr 23 11:45 PM


  • PLAYOFFS
    NHL DALLAS 1
    VANCOUVER 3
    3RD PRD: VAN - (EN) TAYLOR PYATT 2 (BRENDAN MORRISON) 18:57

    Stars vs. CanucksApr 23 11:45 PM
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    Stars vs. CanucksApr 23 11:15 PM
  • jtlynchjr Huge goal for the Canucks.

    Stars vs. CanucksApr 23 11:15 PM


  • PLAYOFFS
    NHL DALLAS 1
    VANCOUVER 2
    3RD PRD: VAN - (PP) TREVOR LINDEN 2 (MATTIAS OHLUND, HENRIK SEDIN)
    7:00

    Stars vs. CanucksApr 23 11:15 PM


  • PLAYOFFS
    NHL END OF THE 2ND 1ST 2ND 3RD TOTAL
    --- --- --- -----
    DALLAS 1 0 1
    VANCOUVER 0 1 1 END OF THE 2ND
    GOAL SCORING:
    1ST PRD: DAL - JOEL LUNDQVIST 2 (JEFF HALPERN, STU BARNES) 16:32
    2ND PRD: VAN - (PP) HENRIK SEDIN 2 (DANIEL SEDIN) 15:12
    SHOTS ON GOAL: 1ST 2ND 3RD TOTAL
    --- --- --- -----
    DAL 10 3

    Apr 23 10:42 PM


  • PLAYOFFS
    NHL DALLAS 1
    VANCOUVER 1
    2ND PRD: VAN - (PP) HENRIK SEDIN 2 (DANIEL SEDIN) 15:12

    Stars vs. CanucksApr 23 10:31 PM


  • PLAYOFFS
    NHL END OF THE 1ST 1ST 2ND 3RD TOTAL
    --- --- --- -----
    DALLAS 1 1
    VANCOUVER 0 0 END OF THE 1ST
    GOAL SCORING:
    1ST PRD: DAL - JOEL LUNDQVIST 2 (JEFF HALPERN, STU BARNES) 16:32
    SHOTS ON GOAL: 1ST 2ND 3RD TOTAL
    --- --- --- -----
    DAL 10 10
    VAN 6 6
    GOALIES: DAL - MARTY

    Apr 23 9:46 PM


  • PLAYOFFS
    NHL DALLAS 1
    VANCOUVER 0
    1ST PRD: DAL - JOEL LUNDQVIST 2 (JEFF HALPERN, STU BARNES) 16:32

    Stars vs. CanucksApr 23 9:41 PM
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