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Pettersson caps Canucks comeback with OT winner over Blue Jackets

Vancouver Canucks Brock Boeser Elias Pettersson Quinn Hughes - The Canadian Press

VANCOUVER — Elias Pettersson knocked home a shot by Brock Boeser to score his second goal of the game with 59 seconds left in overtime as the Vancouver Canucks defeated the Columbus Blue Jackets 5-4 in a thrilling NHL game Saturday night.

Boeser snapped a six-goal goal drought by scoring three goals, including two on the power play in the third period.

Vancouver scored three power-play goals in 5:17 of the third to overcome a three-goal deficit and force the three-on-three overtime.

Pettersson also had a power-play goal and an assist for the Canucks, who have registered points in 11 straight games. J.T. Miller and Quinn Hughes each had three assists, while Pius Suter had two assists.

Alexandre Texier had a short-handed goal and an assist for the Blue Jackets (15-23-10). Kirill Marchenko, on the power play, Sean Kuraly and Jake Bean also scored for Columbus which is (3-4-2) in their last nine games but sit last in the Metropolitan Division.

After missing the playoffs seven times in the last eight years Vancouver heads into the All-Star break with a 32-11-5 record and leads the Pacific Division with 71 points.

Vancouver goaltender Thatcher Demko stopped 26 shots. Columbus goaltender Elvis Merzlikins made 28 saves.

History repeated itself for Vancouver. The Canucks had battled back from two, two-goal third-period deficits in a 4-3 overtime loss to St. Louis on Wednesday. The third period was just 70-seconds-old Saturday when Miller found Pettersson open in the faceoff circle.

A patient Pettersson waited, then fired a hard shot that beat a sprawling Merzlikins. Boeser made it 4-3 at 3:24 on another power play, redirecting a Suter tip of a Hughes’ shot.

Boeser earned the hat trick with another power-play goal at 6:28, jamming home the loose puck on a shot by Pettersson. Vancouver defenceman Tyler Myers was assessed a five-minute major and a game misconduct at 11:55 of the third period for elbowing Kuraly.

Vancouver killed the penalty, allowing only one shot on goal. The Blue Jackets scored both short-handed and on the power play to lead 4-1 after the second period. A turnover by Pettersson just inside the offensive blue line setup Texier’s short-handed goal at 4:30. Texier turned the turnover into a two-on-one breakaway, scoring on a shot over Demko’s left pad.

Just 1:44 later Texier sent a pass from behind the Canucks net to Kuraly in the slot, who scored his seventh of the season.

Vancouver cut that lead in half at 16:20 when Boeser tipped a pass from J.T. Miller past Merzlikins for his 28th of the season. The goal snapped a six-game scoring drought for Boeser.

Columbus rebounded with goals 58 seconds apart. Yegor Chinakhov picked off an errant Miller pass and fed the puck to Bean, who blasted a shot past Demko at 17:27. Marchenko scored on the power play at 18:30 with a pretty tip off a shot by Johnny Gaudreau that hit the post behind Demko, fell on the ice and rolled into the net.

The Canucks outshot Columbus 11-4 in a scoreless first period. Merzlikins was forced to slide across his crease early in the period to stop Boeser from in close. Later Noah Juulsen rang a shot off the post.

One of the biggest cheers of the period came when Vancouver defenceman Nikita Zadorov flattened Blue Jacket centre Jack Roslovic with a big hit.


With his fifth shutout of the season Monday against Chicago, Demko became the fastest goalie in Canucks history to record 25 wins, reaching the mark in 34 games, five fewer than Ryan Miller in 2014-15. … Pius Suter scored three, third-period goals in Vancouver’s 4-3 overtime loss to St. Louis Wednesday to become the sixth player in franchise history to record a third-period hat trick. … The Canucks celebrated Lunar New Year by wearing warm-up jerseys featuring a dragon integrated into the skate logo …. Merzlikins started for the fourth time in five games for Columbus. … The Blue Jackets placed defenceman Adam Boqvist (upper body) on injured reserve and recalled defenceman Nick Blankenburg from Cleveland of the AHL.


Canucks: Head out on a five-game road trip after the All-Star break, beginning Feb. 6 in Carolina.

Blue Jackets: Visit the Seattle Kraken on Sunday.

This report by The Canadian Press was first published Jan. 27, 2024.