Game 3 and 4 of the Western Conference Finals in San Jose this past weekend were such a stark contrast between on another.
Game 3 of the Western Conference Final game me a heart attack. I get home by the end of the first period to see that Vancouver is trailing 3-0. Second period seemed to stall for both teams, as they traded power plays. The third period was kicked up a notch as the Canucks managed to come back with three goals. Despite their surge in momentum, the Canucks lost 4-3.
Game 4 on the other hand can be be summed up in one word: penalties. When it comes to power plays, the Sharks don’t appear to know what they’re doing. In the first period they failed at scoring despite having 5 consecutive power plays. When they had penalties, they couldn’t kill them like the Canucks. In their last 13 man-advantage situations, the Sharks have only scored once.
Vancouver used that weakness to their advantage, despite being grossly out shot by the Sharks. They scored three goals in two minutes during one of their many 5 on 3 power plays (an NHL record) during the second period.
Sami Salo played a huge role in the Canucks win, finally back from rupturing his Achilles tendon over the summer (an injury that could have seen the end of his career). He did his part in killing off the five straight penalties the Canucks took in the first period, not to mention setting up Ryan Kesler’s goal, and then scoring two of his own.
The Canucks also fought back against Sharks player Jamie McGinn (who knocked out Christian Ehrhoff and Aaron Rome), when a hip check from Keith Ballard sent McGinn into a head over heels flip. Neither Ehrhoff nor Rome are expected to be back yet for Game 5.
In front of a packed HP Pavilion in San Jose, the Canucks won Game 4 with a score of 4-2.
Game 5 is set to take place tomorrow Tuesday, May 24th at 6 pm PST at Rogers Arena. Get your ticket and cheer on the home team!