Hughes makes assist history as Canucks top PredatorsReuters | Vancouver | Updated: 11-02-2020 11:40 IST | Created: 11-02-2020 11:38 IST
Elias Pettersson and J.T. Miller each had a goal and an assist, and Jacob Markstrom finished with 36 saves as the Pacific Division-leading Vancouver Canucks jumped out to an early four-goal lead and cruised to a 6-2 victory over the visiting Nashville Predators on Monday night. Quinn Hughes finished with three assists for Vancouver to become the second rookie defenseman in NHL history to record four three-assist games in a season. Ray Bourque did it for the Boston Bruins in 1979-80.
Zack MacEwen, Brandon Sutter, Jordie Benn and Jake Virtanen also scored goals, and Adam Gaudette and Troy Stecher each added two assists for the Canucks, who snapped a four-game losing streak while winning for the 10th time in their past 11 home games. Craig Smith and Mikael Granlund scored for Nashville. Pekka Rinne, making his first start in four games, stopped just 13 of 17 shots before being pulled early in the second period. Juuse Saros took over and finished with 13 saves on 15 shots.
Vancouver dominated the first period, taking a 3-0 lead. MacEwen opened the scoring with his second goal of the season with a quick wrist shot from the right circle under Rinne's glove at 7:06. Sutter made it 2-0 with a power-play goal at 12:44, redirecting Pettersson's pass from the right circle inside the left post for his seventh goal of the season. Benn followed with his first goal of the season on a slap shot from the left point past a screened Rinne and inside the left post at 13:51.
The Canucks upper their lead to 4-0 just 58 seconds into the second period when Alexander Edler's shot from the left point bounced in off Pettersson, who was stationed in front of the net. Pettersson's 24th goal of the season chased Rinne. Nashville cut the deficit to 4-2 on goals 66 seconds apart in the middle period. Smith got the first on the power play, backhanding in a rebound of a Roman Josi shot for his 13th goal of the season. Granlund followed with a rebound of a Dante Fabbro shot into a wide-open right side of the net for his 13th tally.
Miller extended Vancouver's lead to 5-2 near the end of the period with his 22nd goal of the season, redirecting Hughes' shot past Saros. Virtanen made it 6-2 early in the third with a power-play goal, firing a wrist shot from the top of the right circle through Saros' pads for his 16th goal of the season.