Originally written on NorthWest Sports Beat  |  Last updated 2/14/12
Dogs Of War

The Vancouver Canucks reflected the defensive dedication of Dave Tippett’s desert dogs and held on to win in a 2-1 shootout victory over the Coyotes Monday at Rogers Arena.

The Canucks were held to less than five shots in both the first and third periods, relying on defensive structure and the solid play of Roberto Luongo to keep the Coyotes under control for the majority of the hockey game.

The Hat Trick

Booth’s Big Moves

After generating only four shots in the first period, the Canucks came back with a far more respectable effort against Phoenix in the second, leading to David Booth’s beautiful power-move around Jason Labarbera to open the scoring.

After dancing around the Phoenix defence for his 10th of the season, Booth was called upon by Head Coach Alain Vigneault again in the shootout to put another puck past Labarbera.

Booth beat the former Canuck with another gorgeous move putting the pressure on Mikkel Boedker in the fifth round of the shootout.

Bitz Breaks Down

Byron Bitz has been a pleasant surprise on Vancouver’s top line alongside the Sedin twins, but had a tough game Monday at Rogers Arena after struggling to generate any scoring with the talented twins.

Bitz turned the puck over in his own zone late during the third period Monday, allowing Keith Yandle to wrist home a long shot from just inside the blue line to tie the game at one.

“I promise,” Bieksa was seen shouting to Klesla after referees broke up a potential bout. - (Photo by Rich Lam/Getty Images)

While the shot surely shouldn’t have found a way past Luongo, it was obvious to Bitz and his teammates that the puck can’t be turned over from such a sensitive spot on the ice.

Bieksa Busy

Kevin Bieksa generated 3 of the Canucks’ 22 shots on Monday but was making the game more entertaining thanks to his interactions between blown whistle and faceoff.

While play was stopped during the second period Bieksa banked the puck off the glass, attempting to catch it behind his back only to have linesmen Mark Wheler give him a “helping hand” in the process.

Once the final horn had blown to end overtime, Bieksa once again found an extracurricular activity to entertain himself and the crowd. Rostislav Klesla and Bieksa almost came to blows when a pre-shootout shoving match escalated in Vancouver’s zone.

V’s Thoughts

The Canucks have struggled to ice a solid sixty minutes over their past several games and continued in those struggles Monday against the Coyotes.

While scoring came at a premium on Monday, Vancouver’s own defensive performance against the Coyotes was equally paralyzing.

Quote

“I promise,” Kevin Bieksa was seen shouting to Klesla after referees broke up a potential bout following the end of overtime.

Three Stars

1st. David Booth - GOALS: 1| PTS: 1| ASST: 0 SOG: 4| PLUS/MINUS: 1
2nd. Martin Hanzal - GOALS: 0| PTS: 0| ASST: 0 SOG: 1| PLUS/MINUS: 0
3rd. Roberto Luongo - SAVE PCTG: 0.958

Recaps

BOXSCORE | Q’s POST GAME RECAP

Vancouver 2, Phoenix 1
When: 10:00 PM ET, Monday, February 13, 2012
Where: Rogers Arena, Vancouver, British Columbia
Referees: Marc Joannette, Paul Devorski
Linesmen: Brad Lazarowich, Mark Wheler
Attendance: 18890

CLICK HERE TO CHECK OUT THE CANUCKS BLOG IN THE CLUBHOUSE TODAY!

© Kevin Vanstone for North West Sports Beat, 2012. | Permalink | No comment |

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Post tags: 3 Stars, Alain Vigneault, Analysis, boxscore, Byron Bitz, Canucks Blog, Canucks hockey blog, Canucks Recap, Coyotes vs. Canucks, Dave Tippett, Game 56 Analysis, Jason Labarbera, Keith Yandle, Kevin Bieksa, Mikkel Boedker, NHL Highlights, NHL Recaps, Phoenix Coyotes vs. Vancouver Canucks, Phoenix vs. Vancouver, Roberto Luongo, Rostislav Klesla, Three Stars, Vancouver Canucks Blog

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