CALGARY, Alberta (AP) — When the Vancouver Canucks beat the Calgary Flames last Friday, their power play clicked and their top line scored.
Neither of those things happened during losses in Games 1 and 3 to the Flames and the Canucks find themselves facing a 2-1 deficit in their Western Conference quarterfinal series. Game 4 is Tuesday at Calgary.
“The second game at home our power play was really good,” Canucks forward Daniel Sedin said Monday.
“Last game we had a few chances, but not good enough,” he added. “In a game like that on the road, you need your power play to step up.”
Sedin scored his only goal of the series when he converted a pass from his brother Henrik at 2:56 of the first period in Friday’s win at Vancouver. The Canucks went up 2-0 on a power-play goal by Chris Higgins and cruised to victory.
The Canucks have had 10 chances with the man advantage so far in the series, but have only the goal by Higgins to show for their efforts.
“It needs to be better,” Vancouver coach Willie Desjardins said. “It’s not that we haven’t had some chances, we just have to get it going.”
Both Sedin brothers agreed with their coach’s assessment.
“It seems like we can get some looks, but it’s about scoring,” said Henrik, who managed just one shot on net during Sunday’s 4-2 loss. “I thought we had some early chances where we had some chances to score, but we didn’t capitalize.”
Added Daniel: “We have a plan of what we want to do. We have to execute, that’s the bottom line — crisp passes, quicker passes. We’re almost there. I think we’re close. I think our breakouts are fine. We just have to move the puck faster and get the shots.”
The Canucks received some good news Monday as forward Alex Burrows, who plays on Vancouver’s top line with the Sedins, will not be suspended due to an instigator penalty he received Sunday after an incident with Calgary defenseman Kris Russell.
Daniel said he and his brother are looking forward to having Burrows back on their line Tuesday.
“Our line has been, for the last game maybe not so good, but for the first two games we played really well,” Daniel said.
“I thought even the last game we had a few chances. I don’t think that’s a concern. We need more goals and it’s up to us to do that. A little bit more five-on-five and a little bit more power play, I think we’re going to get going. There’s no question about that.”
Vancouver defenseman Kevin Bieksa said the Canucks have to do a better job of containing Calgary’s forecheck game.
“They’re pinching a lot on us right now and we’re not clean, so when we do get the puck out, it’s been jammed right down our throats,” Bieksa said. “It’s a vicious cycle. We have to get on the other side of it.”