Published January 28, 2010
VANCOUVER, British Columbia – VANCOUVER, British Columbia (AP) — Vancouver defenseman Christian Ehrhoff scored a power-play goal from a sharp angle with 7:48 left to give the Canucks a 3-2 victory over the St. Louis Blues on Wednesday night.
With Paul Kariya in the penalty box for a slash that left Henrik Sedin shaking his hand to draw the referee's attention, Ehrhoff's screen shot from just above the goal line somehow got through goalie Ty Conklin's legs.
Mason Raymond had put the Canucks ahead with his second goal of the game 3:37 into the third period, but T.J. Oshie tied it midway through the period.
Roberto Luongo made 25 saves to help the Canucks win six straight games for the first time since February 2007 and move two points ahead of Colorado atop the Northwest Division. Luongo made a sprawling stop on Andy McDonald's breakaway in the third, and got a break when Erik Johnson hit the post with 1:30 left
Vancouver swept a four-game homestand and leads the NHL with 47 points (23-7-1) on home ice. But the Canucks don't play at GM Place again until March 13 because of the upcoming Olympics — they leave Thursday for a six-week trip that is split into eight games before the Winter Games and six more after.
Keith Tkachuk also scored, and Conklin finished with 31 saves as the Blues fell to 6-5-2 under new coach Davis Payne. He took over from Andy Murray on Jan. 2, two days after the Canucks overcame a 3-0 deficit to beat St. Louis in overtime.
Tkachuk opened the scoring on a power play 4:24 into the first period after a nice cross-crease pass from McDonald left him with an empty net. But a bad David Perron turnover just inside his blue line allowed the Canucks to tie it just over two minutes later. Ryan Kesler intercepted the soft cross-ice feed, and threw the puck on goal for Raymond to deflect it between Conklin s legs.
Raymond put the Canucks ahead by scoring his 20th goal of the season off the rush early in the third period. He faked a slap shot at the top of the faceoff circle and took a couple more strides before snapping a shot that went off the outstretched stick of Johnson and past the shoulder of Conklin.
The Blues tied it 7 minutes later after David Backes won a battle for a rebound in the slot and knocked the puck across to Oshie for an open net.
Conklin was back in goal after blanking Calgary 2-0 on Monday, just the second time this season he has started consecutive games. He did manage to blank the Canucks' top line of Henrik Sedin, Daniel Sedin and Alex Burrows for the first time in 13 games. The trio had combined for 30 points over the previous five games and 128 in 30 contests since Daniel Sedin returned from a broken foot in late November. But Burrows had his 12-game point streak snapped at 13 goals and 6 assists, and Henrik Sedin failed to build on his NHL-leading 76 points.
NOTES: Six Vancouver forwards came into the game with more points than Blues scoring leader Brad Boyes, who had 34. Backes was back after missing three games with an upper-body injury. ... Vancouver D Willie Mitchell missed his fourth game since sustaining a concussion Jan. 16.