Vancouver Canucks finish season sweep of Boston Bruins with 8-5 win

Vancouver Canucks finish season sweep of Boston Bruins with 8-5 win
Canucks 8 Bruins 5: A Garden party as Horvat, Eriksson fuel one wild night
BOSTON — The Vancouver Canucks keep on showing that they are the surprise of the Western Conference.

Bo Horvat had two goals and two assists as the Canucks earned an impressive 8-5 victory over the Boston Bruins on Thursday night.

Canucks Takeaways: Vancouver continues to surprise with ability to score

“There is a lot of resiliency in this room,” Horvat said. “We played a pretty good game in Detroit and after a tough loss like that to come back shows a lot. In preseason, people didnt think we were going to be that high-scoring of a team, but we keep proving people wrong and thats what we need to continue to do.”

Canucks 2017 first round pick Elias Pettersson, despite notching an assist, built on his rookie scoring lead, giving him 17 points on the season. He is a big part of the reason the Canucks seemed to have made significant strides to start the season.

Loui Eriksson added two goals and an assist and spurred a five-goal outbust in the second period for Vancouver. Ben Hutton and Erik Gudbranson each had a goal and an assist, and Antoine Roussel and Jake Virtanen added goals for the Canucks, who have scored 26 goals in the last five games.

“I had some puck luck today probably,” Eriksson said. “We know we have some young guys playing, and they are still learning, but they are handling their situations and responding well.”

Jake DeBrusk scored twice, Patrice Bergeron, Matt Grzelcyk and Danton Heinen added goals, and David Krejci finished with three assists for Bruins. Boston lost for the second time at home this season and has dropped three of five overall.

Jaroslav Halak came into the game leading the NHL in save percentage, but was pulled after allowing five goals on 19 shots. His replacement, Tuukka Rask, didnt do much better, allowing three goals on the first eight shots he faced, including a misplay of a clearing attempt that led to the Canucks seventh goal.

“I was just trying to keep it under 10,” Rask said sarcastically. “Just trying to do damage control as it was kind of a crazy game.”

Bergeron gave the Bruins their only lead of the game, 2-1 at 0:36 of the second, when he beat Jacob Markstrom. Markstrom made 23 saves in his sixth start of the season.

“Pucks just found a way tonight,” Halak said. “Goalies have to have a short memory, so we need to regroup quickly and get ready for two tough games this weekend.”

Eriksson and Hutton responded for Vancouver by scoring in a 1:26 span, and Vancouver moved ahead 3-2 at the 8:28 mark. After DeBrusk tied it at 3 at the 11 minute mark, Halak allowed another pair of goals 1:30 apart for a 5-3 lead at 14:53.

“The prior two years I dont know if we had the resiliency,” Gudbranson said. “A goal goes in, something bad happens and doubt would creep in, but mentally we are much stronger this year.”

Nikolay Goldobin and Markus Granlund each added two assists for the Canucks who swept the season series from Boston.

NOTES: Canucks forward Brock Boeser was sent home to see a specialist regarding his groin injury. … David Backes returned to the Bruins lineup after missing seven games. . Boston scored more than three goals for the second time in 10 games. . Eriksson played from 2013-16 with Boston, racking up 62 goals and 147 points. . Horvats four points tied a career high.

BOSTON — Bo Horvat had two goals and two assists for the Vancouver Canucks in an 8-5 win against the Boston Bruins at TD Garden on Thursday.

Loui Eriksson had two goals and an assist, Ben Hutton and Erik Gudbranson each had a goal and an assist, and Jacob Markstrom made 23 saves for Vancouver (10-6-1), which is 4-0-1 in its past five games.

It was the most goals the Canucks have scored in a game since Nov. 14, 2009 (8-2 win against Colorado Avalanche).

“I dont think we have any doubt in our minds, and thats nice,” Gudbranson said. “You know, you come into every building, were coming into this place knowing that were going to put a good show forward and were going to give ourselves the best chance possible to come out with two points.”

Jake DeBrusk had two goals and an assist, Matt Grzelcyk and Danton Heinen each scored his first goal of the season, and David Krejci had three assists for Boston (8-5-2). Jaroslav Halak allowed five goals on 19 shots before being pulled in the second period. He was replaced by Tuukka Rask, who made 11 saves.

“Goaltending, obviously neither guy was on his game. So thats a problem, its going to happen,” Bruins coach Bruce Cassidy said. “Defense, I think was as much turnovers worked against us when we started to get behind. And quite honestly, I think three goals we didnt get a shot block up top from our forwards. So probably look at a lot of different reasons because I dont think there was any … eight goals, I dont think you saw a lot of tic-tac-toe in front of the goalie. There were pucks that had eyes that we didnt block or a goalie didnt get to.”

Horvat gave the Canucks a 1-0 lead at 2:46 of the first period. Grzelcyk tied it 1-1 with a slap shot from the top of the left circle at 13:41.

Patrice Bergeron scored 36 seconds into the second period to give Boston a 2-1 lead on a rebound in front.

Eriksson tied it 2-2 at 7:02, and Hutton scored to make it 3-2 at 8:28 with a power-play goal from the slot.

Eriksson made it 4-3 at 13:23 on the power play, and Antoine Roussel scored on a tap-in at the top of the crease at 14:53 to extend the lead to 5-3. Halak was pulled following the goal.

“Loui was phenomenal tonight, not only scoring goals but doing other things, backchecks and good sticks and obviously scoring big goals at big times,” Horvat said. “And I think that shows a lot about his confidence right now. I think its getting better and better right now.”

DeBrusk cut it to 5-4 at 17:18 on the power play, but Gudbranson beat Rask blocker side from the right point to make it 6-4 at 19:28. It was Gudbransons first goal of the season and his first in 31 games dating back to last season.

“There was a little lane to the net. I knew there was traffic, and it was about just getting it past the first guy, and it went in,” Gudbranson said.

Horvat scored a shorthanded goal to give the Canucks a 7-4 lead at 9:40 of the third period. Jake Virtanen made it 8-4 on a one-timer at 11:12.

“You know, I like the way hes playing right now. Hes playing the way we envisioned him, where hes able to produce and go against top-end centermen, and thats what weve talked about with his game, progressing and evolving into the player that hell eventually be.” — Vancouver coach Travis Green on center Bo Horvat 

“I was just trying to keep it under 10 (goals), thats what I was worried about.” — Bruins goalie Tuukka Rask

Canucks rookie forward Elias Pettersson had one assist. He was trying to become fourth player since 1920-21 to score at least 11 goals through his first 11 NHL games (Don Murdoch, New York Rangers, 1976-77; Rob Gaudreau, San Jose Sharks, 1992-93; Teemu Selanne, Winnipeg Jets, 1992-93). … Gudbranson has a personal-best four-game point streak (one goal, four assists).