Flyers 6, Canucks 2
VANCOUVER, British Columbia (AP) _ Rod Brind’Amour and Valeri Zelepukin scored two goals apiece as the Philadelphia Flyers extended their unbeaten streak to 10 games with a 6-2 win over the Vancouver Canucks on Thursday night.
John LeClair had a goal and two assists and Colin Forbes also scored as the Flyers clinched the game with a four-goal second period. LeClair’s goal, coming with 50 seconds left in the game, was his 200th as a Flyer, making him the 11th player to score 200 or more with Philadelphia.
Philadelphia, one of the hottest teams in the NHL, is 6-0-4 in its last 10 games. The Flyers also continued their dominance over the Canucks. Philadelphia is now 8-0-1 in its last nine meetings against Vancouver, including last month’s 6-2 win in Philadelphia. The Flyers are unbeaten in their last 10 visits (6-0-4) to Vancouver.
The Flyers were minus captain Eric Lindros, who missed his first game of the season recovering from a mild concussion suffered in Calgary on Tuesday. Lindros, the NHL’s leading scoring with 19 goals and 25 assists, is listed as day to day, and his condition will be re-evaluated before the Flyers’ play Edmonton on Sunday.
Markus Naslund and Mattias Ohlund scored for the Canucks who lost their fourth straight game and have been outscored 15-4 over that span.
Philadelphia goalie John Vanbiesbrouck, 5-0-3 in his last eight games, stopped 23 shots and also had an assist on Zelepukin’s first goal. Vanbiesbrouck upped his career record to 16-3-5 against Vancouver.
Brind’Amour, who now has two goals and four assists in his last four games, broke a 1-1 tie to put the Flyers up for good 10:57 into the second period. Philadelphia’s Keith Jones started the play, stripping Vancouver’s Bret Hedican along the boards. The puck dribbled to LeClair who, from the left corner, tapped the puck into the middle to a wide-open Brind’Amour who made a clever fake and then slipped the puck through Canuck goalie Garth Snow’s legs.
The Flyers went up 3-1 three minutes later when Forbes, from a bad angle to the left of the net, had his shot deflect in off Vancouver defenseman Adrian Aucoin’s stick.
Brind’Amour put the game away, making it 4-1, beating Snow high on the short side with a rising shot with 1:37 left in the second. The Flyers scored four goals on nine shots, chasing Snow who was replaced by back-up Corey Hirsch at the start of the third.
Zelepukin welcomed Hirsch with a goal 1:38 into the period, giving Philadelphia a 5-1 lead.
The Canucks opened the scoring during a power-play chance 8:39 into the game when Naslund scored his team-leading 19th. Canucks captain Mark Messier set up the goal and moved to within two assists of Marcel Dionne, who is fifth on the career NHL list with 1,040 assists.
Lindros, who hasn’t skated since suffering the injury, was diagnosed by the Canucks neurologist before the game and the results were faxed back to the Flyers neurologist in Philadelphia. The results won’t be released until Friday.