Minnesota Wild goalie Alex Stalock (32) is crashed into by Vancouver Canucks’ Loui Eriksson (21) during second period NHL qualifying round game action in Edmonton on Thursday, August 6, 2020. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jason Franson

Minnesota Wild goalie Alex Stalock (32) is crashed into by Vancouver Canucks’ Loui Eriksson (21) during second period NHL qualifying round game action in Edmonton on Thursday, August 6, 2020. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jason Franson

Canucks blank Wild 3-0, take series lead in penalty-filled NHL qualifying clash

Jacob Markstrom stops 27 shots to lead Vancouver past Minnesota

EDMONTON — Jacob Markstrom stopped 27 shots as the Vancouver Canucks edged Minnesota 3-0 to put the Wild on the precipice of elimination in NHL playoff qualifying action Thursday.

The Canucks lead the best-of-five series two games to one and can punch their ticket to the round of 16 with a win Friday night.

Vancouver hasn’t been in the playoffs since 2015.

Brock Boeser, on the power play, Antoine Roussel, and Elias Pettersson scored for the Canucks, punching a hole in the otherwise suffocating Wild defence.

It was chippy, angry, penalty-filled afternoon affair at Rogers Place punctuated by low-probability long-distance shots, a lot of stoppages in play, post-whistle scrums, and loud liberal F-bombs.

There was no scoring in the first period.

Boeser broke the ice to score his second goal of the series at 13:49 of the second frame, backhanding a rebound off a Pettersson slapshot past Minnesota goalie Alex Stalock.

Two minutes into the third frame, Vancouver capitalized on a mistake to take a 2-0 lead.

Wild defenceman Brad Hunt bobbled the puck at the Canuck blue line, allowing Roussel to race past him, grab the puck on a breakaway and shovel it on the backhand past Stalock.

Petterson scored his first post-season goal late in the third, one-timing a pass from Quinn Hughes on a two-on-one power-play rush.

Game 2 was a parade to the penalty box and Game 3 was no different: hooking, slashing, roughing, tripping, and boarding calls were racked up by both teams alongside some highlight moments of thuggery.

READ MORE: Canucks tame Minnesota Wild 4-3 to even NHL qualifying series

In the first period, Roussel was penalized after he ran over Stalock behind Minnesota’s net.

Midway through the second, Vancouver’s J.T. Miller and Minnesota’s Ryan Hartman scrapped after Hartman laid a dangerous hit on Pettersson, hitting him head first into the boards while Pettersson was bent over.

In the third, frustrated Wild forward Kevin Fiala elbowed Backstrom after the whistle, leading to Vancouver’s Brandon Sutter racing in to level him in the corner.

Stalock made 26 saves going the distance for his third complete game of the series.

For the most part the contest was a replay of Game 1, when the Wild threw a blanket on Vancouver’s forwards and Stalock made 28 saves for a 3-0 shutout win.

In Game 2, Vancouver snipers Tanner Pearson, Miller, Boeser and Bo Horvat managed to break through in a 4-3 win.

The Canucks were successful despite injuries taking a bite out of their lineup.

Forward Tyler Toffoli didn’t dress for a second consecutive game, dealing with an with an undefined foot injury. Forward Micheal Ferland has been sent home for the series, deemed unfit to play. Ferland has had concussion problems this year and played very little in Game 2.

The Wild wore their green uniforms as they were the “home” team.

There are 12 Western Conference teams playing at Rogers Place, with players in isolation to avoid contracting COVID-19. The Eastern Conference teams are doing the same in Toronto.

The Wild missed the playoffs last year preceded by first-round exits in each of the preceding three seasons.

Minnesota was 35-27-7 in the regular season, good for 21st overall and the 10th seed in the Western Conference.

Vancouver was 36-27-6 (15th, seventh seed).

THE CANADIAN PRESS

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter 

CanuckshockeyNHL

Just Posted

Police are investigating after a man was killed at a home on Cowichan Lake Road early Monday morning. (Kevin Rothbauer/Citizen)
Police investigating early-morning murder in Duncan

One arrested after man killed at Cowichan Lake Road home

Island Health chief medical officer Dr. Richard Stanwick receives a first dose of Pfizer vaccine, Dec. 22, 2020. (B.C. government)
COVID-19: B.C. seniors aged 90+ can start to sign up for vaccination on March 8

Long-term care residents protected by shots already given

Firefighters from three departments battled a house fire south of Nanaimo for more than nine hours Sunday. (Photo courtesy Martin Leduc)
Home in Cedar destroyed by fire

Firefighters from three fire departments battle blaze fanned by strong winds Sunday

Police have identified the vehicle involved in the Feb. 14 hit-and-run in Chemainus and are continuing to investigate. (Black Press Media files)
Police seize and identify suspect vehicle in fatal Chemainus hit-and-run

Investigation expected to be lengthy and involved

Wildlife advocate Gary Schroyen captured this picture of a one-year-old cougar in the Sooke Hills using a homemade trip camera. Vancouver Island is home to approximately 800 cougars, which makes up about a quarter of the total population in B.C. (Gary Schroyen photo)
Wildlife advocate Gary Schroyen captured this picture of a one-year-old cougar in the Sooke Hill using a homemade trip camera. Schroyen presents Animal Signs: The Essence of Animal Communication on Nov. 30. (Gary Schroyen photo)
Declining Vancouver Island cougar populations linked to wolves

Large carnivore specialist says human development still plays biggest role on cougar numbers

Langley resident Carrie MacKay shared a video showing how stairs are a challenge after spending weeks in hospital battling COVID-19 (Special to Langley Advance Times)
VIDEO: Stairs a challenge for B.C. woman who chronicled COVID-19 battle

‘I can now walk for six (to) 10 minutes a day’

A cougar was spotted Monday near Queneesh Elementary. (WildSafe BC photo)
Cougar sighted Monday near Courtenay school

Public to avoid the wooded areas around Queneesh Elementary

The Save-On-Foods Memorial Centre has reopened with 45 shelter spots for people experiencing homelessness in Victoria. (Courtesy of Save-On-Foods Memorial Centre)
Save-On-Foods Memorial Centre shelter in Victoria reopens with spots for 45 people

Arena is an interim step until long-term housing is found

Visitors relax at the natural hot springs located within Maquinna Marine Provincial Park. (tofinohiking.com photo)
Maquinna Marine Provincial Park boardwalk project on track

“The walk down the two-kilometre boardwalk to the springs itself is by far one of the most incredible experiences.”

Provincial health officer Dr. Bonnie Henry updates B.C.’s coronavirus situation, May 8, 2020. (B.C. government photo)
B.C.’s weekend COVID-19 cases: 532 Saturday, 508 Sunday, 438 Monday

Fraser Health still has most, eight more coronavirus deaths

B.C. Attorney General David Eby speaks in the legislature, Dec. 7, 2020. Eby was given responsibility for housing after the October 2020 provincial election. (Hansard TV)
B.C. extends COVID-19 rent freeze again, to the end of 2021

‘Renoviction’ rules tightened, rent capped to inflation in 2022

Face mask hangs from a rear-view mirror. (Black Press image)
B.C. CDC unveils guide on how to carpool during the pandemic

Wearing masks, keeping windows open key to slowing the spread of COVID-19

Most Read