Final

Series (Game 2 of 2)

Vancouver leads 2-0

Game 1: Tuesday, November 18th
Canadiens4Final
OT
Canucks5
Game 2: Tuesday, November 25th
Canucks5Final
Canadiens2

Canucks 5

(13-6-2, 30 pts)

Canadiens 2

(9-11-1, 20 pts)

7:30 PM ET, November 25, 2003

Bell Centre, Montreal, Quebec, Canada

1 2 3 T
VAN 1 1 35
MTL 1 0 12

M. Naslund (Canucks - LW): Goals: 2, Assists: 1

T. Bertuzzi (Canucks - RW): Goals: 1, Assists: 2

B. Morrison (Canucks - C): Goals: 0, Assists: 2

Naslund, Bertuzzi tally three points each

MONTREAL (AP) -- Vancouver's top line was determined to end the Canucks' road skid.

Markus Naslund had two goals and an assist and Todd Bertuzzi also had three points to lead Vancouver to a 5-2 victory over the Montreal Canadiens on Tuesday night.

Mike Keane scored his first goal for the Canucks and Jason King had his team-leading 11th goal to help Vancouver end a five-game road losing streak (0-3-0-2).

Bertuzzi and center Brendan Morrison each assisted on both of Naslund's goals as Vancouver's top line accounted for eight points.

"We understood the importance of this game, and the importance of getting a road win," Bertuzzi said. "We understood that we needed to get it done, and it had to get done hard tonight. We were eager and we came out strong."

The Canucks, coming off back-to-back losses to Toronto, got their first win in regulation in eight games.

Naslund scored to break a 1-1 tie in the second, and assisted on Bertuzzi's eighth goal early in the third. He added his second goal of the game -- his 10th of the season -- with 6:27 remaining.

"We're starting to skate a little bit better again," Naslund said. "We had a stretch there where it looked like we were all tired, we didn't move around as much as we had to to be successful. When you get checked closely and you have teams trying to shut you down, it's important that you move around and get in new positions, and that's what we're doing right now."

Richard Zednik, who scored twice Saturday in Edmonton -- including the first outdoor goal in NHL history -- got his fifth goal in four games for Montreal. Niklas Sundstrom also scored for the Canadiens, who returned from a five-game road trip.

"They were the better team, it's as simple as that," Canadiens captain Saku Koivu said. "They won all the battles, they won the loose pucks, and they deserved the win. We weren't even close in the game tonight."

Ryan Kesler, chosen 23rd overall in the 2003 draft, assisted on Keane's goal for his first career point in his second game since being recalled from Manitoba of the AHL.

"He's very mature," Naslund said. "He's skating well and he's making good plays, and it's good to see. I'm very happy with the way he's played."

Keane, who signed as a free agent the day before Vancouver's season opener, started the scoring in the first with his first goal in 15 games with the Canucks. It was his first goal since Jan. 23 with Colorado against Columbus -- a span of 39 games.

Brad May recovered the puck and passed to Keane in the slot when Kesler was checked by Francis Bouillon along the right-wing boards. Keane beat goalie Jose Theodore through the legs.

Zednik, who scored just twice in his first 18 games -- including a 12-game drought -- scored his seventh to tie it. After taking a pass from Saku Koivu, Zednik's first shot was blocked by Brent Sopel. Zednik fired the rebound past goalie Dan Cloutier, inside the left post.

Naslund took Bertuzzi's pass and put a backhand shot beyond Theodore in the second to put Vancouver up 2-1.

Bertuzzi made it 3-1 just 3:15 into the third with a shot into the right side of the net, and King increased the lead to three.

Sundstrom scored his first of the season at 12:43 to draw Montreal to within 4-2. Naslund restored the Canucks' three-goal lead 50 seconds later.

Game notes


Los Angeles Dodgers closer Eric Gagne, the 2003 NL Cy Young Award winner, watched the game from a rinkside seat beside the penalty box. ... Both teams and the four on-ice officials wore retro uniforms. Vancouver wore the blue and green jerseys the team sported when it broke into the NHL in 1970-71. Montreal wore its 1945-46 white jerseys.

Copyright by STATS LLC and The Associated Press

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