NASHVILLE, Tenn. – The combination of Daniel Sedin, Henrik Sedin and Markus Naslund was a triple play that the Nashville Predators couldn’t overcome.
After heading into the final period tied 2-2 Daniel Sedin connected on a pair of goals, the second on a power play, to spark the Vancouver Canucks to a 5-2 victory Thursday night. Henrik Sedin and Naslund assisted on both goals.
“They are all good hockey players,” Predators goalie Dan Ellis said. “You can’t give them a lot of room. You have to limit their opportunities because when they get them they score.
“Daniel and Henrik have probably played together their whole life. They are nifty. They really have great feel for each other.”
Alex Burrows, Taylor Pyatt and Trevor Linden also scored for the Canucks, and Curtis Sanford made 26 saves. Jed Ortmeyer and Martin Erat scored for Nashville.
“Curtis Sanford did what a good goaltender is capable of doing,” Vancouver coach Alain Vigneault said. “He kept his team in the game when they weren’t there. We got off to a very slow start in the first period. Nashville had something like 12 point blank chances in the first. Curtis enabled us to stay in the game.”
Daniel Sedin gave the Canucks a 3-2 lead at 8:11 of the third period, skating low through the slot and shooting the puck between the left post and Ellis. The Vancouver player struck again at 12:26, scoring on a high shot from close range as Ellis dove to the ice.
Ortmeyer opened the scoring a little over three minutes into the game, firing a slap shot from the top edge of the right circle that sailed high to the left side of the net over Sanford’s shoulder. The Canucks tied it at 10:19 when Burrows’ shot from the middle of the right circle beat Ellis low to his left side. It was Ortmeyer’s second goal in his last three games.
The Predators scored their second goal of the period when Erat fired a shot from high in the slot that beat Sanford low to his glove side with 1:48 left.
“We had some great chances in the first period, but we didn’t bury all of them,” Predators coach Barry Trotz said. “We should have scored more there and pulled away. We kept it close, but we allowed them to get in late in the game.”
Pyatt tied it at 2 on a power play at 7:48 of the second period.
Linden scored a short-handed, empty-net goal with 38 seconds left in the game.
“The first period we just didn’t play good enough,” Daniel Sedin said. “I don’t think we had our legs. But the second period we played better. And in the third period we just took over.”
Ellis suffered his first loss of the season dropping his record to 6-1. It was his third appearance in the last four games and his second start.
“If you are going to lose, you want it to be in a closer game,” Ellis said. “We had a really strong first period, but in the third period we got away from what was giving us success which was getting pucks deep and funneling pucks to the net. “The Canucks were able to find their game and lull us to sleep a little bit. We didn’t take advantage of our chances in the second and third.”
Notes: The Predators are 10-1-1 when scoring the first goal in a game. … The game was the first of 25 straight for the Predators against Western Conference teams. … It was the sixth time this season the Canucks have played back-to-back games. They are 9-2-1 in back-to-back games this season.