Dallas Stars’ Radek Faksa (12) is stopped by Vancouver Canucks goaltender Anders Nilsson (31) during first period NHL hockey action in Vancouver on Saturday, Dec. 1, 2018. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Ben Nelms

Stars rally late to edge Canucks 2-1

Victoria’s Benn sets up Radulov for game-winner

VANCOUVER — The young Vancouver Canucks showed they have plenty to learn about closing out games on Saturday.

Alex Radulov scored the go-ahead goal with 3:23 left in regulation, lifting the Dallas Stars to a 2-1 win over Vancouver at Rogers Arena.

The slumping Canucks played a strong game and held a 1-0 lead up until midway through the third when Jamie Benn, who also assisted on Radulov’s winner, scored to tie it and put the Canucks on their heels. Suddenly, Vancouver was losing puck battles and turning the puck over.

Radulov’s winner came when Benn found the Russian winger skating in alone in the slot. Radulov made no error as he backhanded it in to quiet the crowd.

“This is a game that in my mind we lost down the stretch,” said Vancouver head coach Travis Green. “Their veteran guys took over. It happens fast and momentum changes. We played a real stingy game for 50 minutes and all of sudden their guys smelled blood. We cracked earlier than they did.”

“It’s a real tough way to lose. It’s a game we’ll learn more from than some of the other losses.”

There have been plenty of those lately, with Vancouver winning just once in the past 12 games. Bo Horvat scored for the Canucks (11-15-3), while Anders Nilsson was solid with 25 saves.

“It’s a matter of putting the full 60 together,” said Horvat. “The first and second we had our chances, with lots of shots on net. But no excuse — we need to be better.”

Ben Bishop made 24 saves in his first start for Dallas (14-10-3) since returning from a lower-body injury that kept him sidelined for five games. The Stars are fifth in the Central Division and currently own the Western Conference’s second wild-card spot.

“You’ve got to be able to close out games if you want to be a good team,” said Bishop. “It’s not always going to be pretty, but we found a way to do it tonight.

“You’ve just got to find ways. Finding different ways to win makes you a better team.”

Benn and Tyler Seguin were the busiest Stars offensively, swarming Nilsson all night. Nilsson was forced to make several strong saves against the duo, including a jaw-dropping glove grab against Seguin in the first.

RELATED: Canucks Report: Not a November to remember

Benn said his near-misses only made him more determined.

“It makes you hungrier,” said Benn. “We had a lot (of chances) in the first and second that weren’t going in. I like how we stuck with it and found a way.”

The Canucks got on the board with just over four minutes to play in the first. Winger Antoine Roussel, a former Star, broke away along the wing and lobbed a rolling puck to Horvat, who got enough stick on it to beat Bishop.

The Stars goalie was solid at the other end in the second when he stopped Brock Boeser all alone on a breakaway.

“I wanted to go five-hole, but he read me like a book,” said Boeser. “It’s tough obviously, that play goes through my head a lot after the game and I’ll be thinking about it.”

Benn tied it 1-1 at 10:19 of the third. After a Miro Heiskanen shot from the point bounced through traffic at the net, Benn swooped around the back of the net and banged in the loose puck.

Jason Keller, The Canadian Press

CanucksNHL

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

 

Dallas Stars’ Jamie Benn (14) fights for the puck against Vancouver Canucks’ Christopher Tanev (8) during third period NHL hockey action in Vancouver on Saturday, December 1, 2018. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Ben Nelms

Just Posted

Heart of our city – Fighting for the road to recovery

World champion kick-boxer wins at Trinity House recovery program

Tour recognizes Prince Rupert’s rich labour history

Epic story of the Battle of Kelly’s Cut put Rupert on the labour radar

Coastal GasLink breaks ground on meter station in Kitimat

Meter station marks final point on pipeline that stretches from Northeast B.C.

Oily rain runoff down the drain causes concern for Prince Rupert residents

Immediate action taken to alleviate any concerns, road paving contractor said.

STANDING TALL: For some, B.C.’s forest industry is the best office in the world

A look at the forest sector in B.C. – and those hoping for the best – amid mill curtailments

Andrew Scheer likely marking last day in House of Commons as Opposition leader

Today’s Commons sitting is one of two scheduled for August

Deaths feared after train derails amid storms in Scotland

Stonehaven is on the line for passenger trains linking Aberdeen with the cities of Edinburgh and Glasgow

DFO says 5 aggrieved B.C First Nations were consulted on fisheries plan

Nuu-chah-nulth First Nations calls response ‘a sham,’ adding DFO never incorporates their views

Lower Mainland woman gives birth on in-laws’ driveway

Frédérique Gagnon new son is appropriately named after Norse trickster god

Man, 54, charged in connection with fatal attack of Red Deer doctor

Doctor was killed in his walk-in clinic on Monday

UPDATE: Two dead after fishing boat sinks off southern Vancouver Island

Shawnigan Lake-registered Arctic Fox II went down off Cape Flattery, west of Victoria

Landlord takes front door, windows after single B.C. mom late with rent

Maple Ridge mom gets help from community generosity and government

Most Read