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The Best Thing: Sven Baertschi returns, saves the day for Canucks

The Vancouver Canucks are home after a three games on the road, and their first game back was a wild one. Their opponent was the Minnesota Wild. Plus the game was wild — a fast-paced, highly entertaining affair that saw the two clubs combine for 77 shots on goal and nine shots in goal before the Canucks emerged with a 5-4 victory.

It was definitely not what we’ve come to expect from Minnesota Wild games over the years.

But these are two very different teams these days. The Canucks’ leading scorer isn’t a Sedin, and their icetime leader was this grinny kid named Ben Hutton. Meanwhile, the Wild’s leading scorer is a Staal. Life comes at you fast, and so did this game.

At first, it looked like we were in for a blowout. With Alex Edler and Chris Tanev out with injury, the Canucks dressed the youngest group of six defencemen in the NHL, and they looked like an inexperienced group for the first period, as the Wild outshot them 14-7 and potted the game’s first goal. They would add another early in the second.

But the Canucks didn’t roll over. Instead, one of the league’s worst power plays struck twice in under two minutes to tie things up. First, it was Brandon Sutter, tipping a point shot from Troy “Boy oh boy, what joy” Stecher to make it 2-1.


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