Canucks' Luongo shuts out Avalanche

Associated Press  |  Last updated January 31, 2013
Roberto Luongo made 24 saves for his first win of the season and the Vancouver Canucks beat the Colorado Avalanche 3-0 on Wednesday night. Luongo, who has been on the trading block since Cory Schneider replaced him as Vancouver's No. 1 goaltender, was rarely tested but still made some big saves in his 61st career shutout. With the Canucks leading 2-0 in the third, Luongo stopped Matt Duchene on a short-handed breakaway that prompted calls of "Luuu, Luuu" from Canucks fans. He blocked a John Mitchell shot from the slot later in the period. Jason Garrison and Max Lapierre each scored for the first time this season, and Zack Kassian picked up his fifth goal in seven games. Kassian tipped a Dan Hamhuis shot past Semyon Varlamov at 8:18 of the third, snapping an 0-for-13 power-play drought for the Canucks. It was another frustrating night on the road for the Avalanche, who are winless in four games away from the Pepsi Center this season and have been outscored 15-3. The Avs' struggling power play has managed just one goal all season and is 0 for 12 on the road. Against Vancouver, the Avs failed to score on a 1:25 two-man advantage and on four opportunities overall. Garrison, a free-agent signing in the offseason, opened the scoring at 7:34 of the first. Avs defenseman Erik Johnson tried to clear the puck but it ended up on Garrison's stick. The big defenseman let go a shot from the blue line that beat Varlamov. Lapierre showed some strength and speed on his goal at 15:12 of the second. He beat Avalanche defenseman Greg Zanon in a battle along the boards, skated in alone, and slipped the puck through Varlamov's legs. Luongo was a surprise starter after he stopped 26 shots and was one of the best Canucks on the ice during a 3-2 shootout loss to the Los Angeles Kings on Monday night. Schneider is expected to start Friday against Chicago. One of Colorado's best scoring chances came with the game less than two minutes old. Luongo got a piece of Jan Hejda's shot, and the puck dropped behind him and lay on the ice. A falling Luongo knocked it out of the crease with the knob of his goal stick. Notes Attendance at Rogers Arena was a sellout at 18,910. ... Garrison's goal came on the Canucks' first shot of the game. ... Vancouver defeated the Avs in all six meetings last season. ... Vancouver's Henrik Sedin played his 588th consecutive game and now ranks seventh in NHL history for the longest ironman streak.
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