Pettersson gets winner in OT, Boeser has hat trick as Canucks rally to beat Blue Jackets 5-4

Vancouver Canucks' Brock Boeser (6) talks to J.T. Miller, center, as Elias Pettersson, back left, Quinn Hughes (43) and Pius Suter (24) listen before a power play against the Columbus Blue Jackets during the third period of an NHL hockey game Saturday, Jan. 27, 2024, in Vancouver, British Columbia. (Darryl Dyck/The Canadian Press via AP)

VANCOUVER, British Columbia (AP) — Elias Pettersson got his second goal of the night 4 minutes into overtime, Brock Boeser had three goals and an assist, and the Vancouver Canucks rallied from three goals down in the third period to beat the Columbus Blue Jackets 5-4 on Saturday night.

J.T. Miller and Quinn Hughes each had three assists, Pius Suter had two, and Pettersson also had one to help Vancouver improve to 9-0-2 in its last 11 games. Thatcher Demko finished with 25 saves.

After missing the playoffs seven times in the last eight years, Vancouver heads into the All-Star break at 32-11-5 and leads the Pacific Division with 71 points.

“We’ve been playing so well as of late,” Boeser said. “We want to keep it going, so we can go into break with our heads high and come back and keep going.”

Boeser reached the 30-goal mark for the first time in his eight-year career.

“Finally, it’s been a long time but I’m just trying to play the right way every night,” Boeser said. “So, that’s just the cherry on top.”

Alexandre Texier had a goal and an assist, and Kirill Marchenko, Jake Bean and Sean Kuraly also scored for Columbus, which has lost six of eight (2-4-2). Elvis Merzlikins finished with 28 saves.

In the extra period, Boeser got the puck high above the left circle, skated around Columbus’ Kent Johnson and sent a pass across the front of the crease and Pettersson put it past Merzlikins for his 27th of the season.

The Canucks trailed 4-1 after two periods before scoring three power-play goals in the third period to tie the score.

“To be an elite team, you’re going to have adversity, you’re going to have penalties, unfortunate bounces,” Canucks coach Rick Tocchet said. “So you just learn, you keep growing as a team. It’s one of those things you’re happy for the adversity that hits the team and how you react. … It was an exciting game.”

Pettersson began the comeback as he knocked in a backhander in front off Miller’s pass from the left side at 1:11 of the third.

Just 2:13 later, with Vancouver on another power play, Boeser deflected Suter’s tip of Hughes’ shot from the right point past Merzlikins for his second of the night to make it 4-3.

Boeser then tied it at 6:28 as he knocked in a loose puck in front. It was his 30th and completed his third hat trick of the season and sixth of his career.

Blue Jackets coach Vincent Pascal said little mistakes cost his team.

“The penalties were the result of us not executing,” he said. “We just need to keep it simple, find a simple game. We tried to make plays we didn’t have. Things like that led to trouble.”

After a scoreless first period in which Vancouver outshot Columbus 11-4, Texier scored a short-handed goal on a 2-on-1 breakaway at 4:30 of the second to give Columbus a 1-0 lead.

Just 1:44 later, Kuraly scored his seventh of the season from the slot to make it 2-0.

Boeser got the Canucks on the scoreboard when he snapped a six-goal goal drought as he tipped Miller’s pass past Merzlikins with 3:40 left in the middle period.

Columbus rebounded with two goals 57 seconds apart. Yegor Chinakhov picked off Miller’s errant pass and fed the puck to Bean, who blasted a shot past Demko with 2:33 remaining in the period. Marchenko then made it 4-1 as he scored on the power play with a pretty tip off a shot by Johnny Gaudreau that hit the post behind Demko, fell on the ice and rolled into the net.

Vancouver defenseman Tyler Myers was assessed a five-minute major and a game misconduct at 11:55 of the third period for elbowing Kuraly. Vancouver killed the penalty, allowing only one shot on goal.

“That second period we turned the puck over way too much, got away from our game,” Miller said. “The response, you work hard to draw penalties and then nice to see the power play get rewarded and then the penalty kill get a gigantic kill.”


Blue Jackets: At Seattle on Sunday night.

Canucks: At Carolina on Feb. 6 in first game after All-Star break.


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