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Breaks go Canucks’ way in Game 6 win against Kings

Vancouver pulls off another third-period rally and eliminates the Kings.

April 25, 2010|By Lisa Dillman

Broken stick.

Broken play.

Broken (Kings) spirit

Even when something seemed to go wrong for the Canucks in the third period, it ended up turning out just right for Vancouver in its first-round playoff series against the Kings.

For example, the winning goal: Mikael Samuelsson's stick shattered on his shot. The puck caromed off the Kings' Michal Handzus to a waiting Daniel Sedin.

Game and series over. The Canucks would add an empty-netter, but Sedin's goal was the difference in Vancouver's 4-2 victory in Game 6 against the Kings on Sunday night at Staples Center.

"I found him and I thought he [Samuelsson] was going to put it in," Henrik Sedin said. "But his stick snapped and Danny got it on his tape and was able to put it in."

Said Daniel Sedin: "Hank made a nice pass to Sammy, and he shot it and the rebound came out to me. I don't know what happened. But it was nice to see it go in."

The third period has belonged to the Sedins at Staples Center. Not exclusively, but you get the idea. They combined for five points in the come-from-behind victory in Game 4 and on Sunday put the hammer down in the series-clinching game.

They combined for zero shots through the first two periods.

"We know we can be bad for 40 minutes ... and things are going to work out," Daniel Sedin said.

This is why the Canucks were able to dent what had been a Kings staple during the regular season. They had not given up a lead after two periods, but they did so twice in the playoffs.

"There's an easy answer: Two of the best players in the league did it," Kings Coach Terry Murray said. "The Sedin line was tremendous. They won the series. They won the game and each of those games you're talking about made the difference. That's what the best players are supposed to do."

That includes Samuelsson. If he keeps this up, maybe he should become an honorary Sedin after joining their line in the third period of Game 4. Just call them the Sedin triplets.

Samuelsson, who was signed as a free agent from Detroit last summer, had a dazzling 11 points, including seven goals. He had two assists in Game 6 and brought some of the Red Wings' quiet, winning confidence to Vancouver's locker room.

He disclosed what was discussed in the Canucks' dressing room after the second period, saying:

"We said before the third period, ‘What the worst-case scenario? We can lose the game.' I think that's the way to look at it: ‘So what?' once in a while."

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