Red Wings finally maneuver past Vancouver

Posted: Monday, April 22, 2002

VANCOUVER, British Columbia -- A big mistake by Dan Cloutier took some of the pressure off Dominik Hasek.

Detroit defenseman Nicklas Lidstrom scored the winning goal from center ice as the Red Wings got back into their first-round playoff series with a 3-1 win over the Vancouver Canucks on Sunday night.

Lidstrom's 90-foot slap shot fluttered under Cloutier's catching glove with 24.6 seconds left in the second period, giving the Red Wings the lead and new life in their best-of-seven series.

Cloutier outplayed Hasek in the first two games to help eighth-seeded Vancouver take a 2-0 lead against the Red Wings, who had the best record in the regular season by far with 116 points.

Hasek, mocked and jeered by Detroit fans after allowing eight goals on 45 shots during the first two games, finished with 22 saves. He stopped Todd Bertuzzi on a penalty shot and was named the game's first star as the Red Wings ended a six-game playoff losing streak that dated to last season.

Devils 4, Hurricanes 0

EAST RUTHERFORD, N.J. -- Brian Rafalski scored two power-play goals and the New Jersey Devils got back into their first-round playoff series Sunday with a victory over the Carolina Hurricanes in Game 3.

Bobby Holik added a goal and an assist, and Patrik Elias had three assists as the Devils responded with one of their best games of the season after losing the opening two games in the best-of-seven series in Carolina.

Brian Gionta, the goat in New Jersey's overtime loss in Game 2, also had a goal for the Devils, who took advantage of some very undisciplined play by Carolina.

Three of the Devils' goals came on the power play. Martin Brodeur was rarely tested, finishing with 16 saves for his 13th playoff shutout.

Bruins 6, Canadiens 4

BOSTON -- Brian Rolston scored twice in the first 12 minutes, but Boston nearly wasted a 4-0 lead before holding off Montreal and tying the playoff series at one game each.

Montreal's Richard Zednik scored two goals in the last six minutes of the first period, and Patrice Brisebois made it 4-3 at 14:01 of the second.

Then the top-seeded Bruins stole the momentum as P.J. Axelsson, who had just seven goals in 78 regular-season games, scored on a slap shot at 17:42 of the second period.

Montreal came back on Doug Gilmour's second playoff goal with 4:54 left in the game and kept applying pressure. But the Canadiens fell short.

Joe Thornton added empty-net goal with 34 seconds left.

Blues 4, Blackhawks 0

CHICAGO -- Jamal Mayers scored early, Keith Tkachuck assisted on two power-play goals and St. Louis smothered Chicago for a second straight game to take a 2-1 lead in their first-round playoff series. Brent Johnson earned his second consecutive shutout, stopping 12 shots. Scott Mellanby and Pavol Demtria had goals on the power play, and Scott Young added a short-handed score for St. Louis.

The Blues dominated with their clingy, aggressive, hard-checking defense and bottled up the middle, just as they did in winning Game 2 in St. Louis 2-0.

For the third straight game, Chicago's top three scorers during the regular season, Eric Daze, Alex Zhamnov and Tony Amonte, couldn't score. The Blackhawks mustered little offense all night and managed just one shot on goal in the final period.

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