VANCOUVER, British Columbia (AP) -- The Minnesota Wild used a
franchise-record scoring burst to get back into their playoff
series with Vancouver.
height=90 align=right alt="Cliff Ronning">
Cliff Ronning scored his first two goals of the playoffs and
Marian Gaborik added his league-best ninth as Minnesota avoided
elimination with a 7-2 win over the Canucks on Monday night.
"We were looking for breaks in this series and I think we got
all of them today,'' Minnesota coach Jacques Lemaire said. "The
puck was rolling for us and we were able to make plays and the puck
scored as the Wild got seven goals for the first in their
"It s a good confidence builder for your hockey team anytime
you score seven goals,'' said Wild defenseman Willie Mitchell, who
played despite an injured right wrist and was selected the game's
Minnesota still trails 3-2 in the series heading home for Game 6
Wednesday night. Game 7, if necessary, would be back in Vancouver
Both teams overcame 3-1 series deficits in the first round, and
the Wild are looking to become the first team to do it twice in the
"Tonight is a big win for us, but we've got a long road to
go,'' Mitchell added. "We played pretty well against Colorado with
our backs against the wall, and they were in a similar situation
too, and they know anything can happen.''
Wild goalie Dwayne Roloson was back in net after watching Manny
Fernandez start Game 4. Roloson, who started Games 2 and 3, made 25
Vancouver goaltender Dan Cloutier gave up six goals on 21 shots
and was pulled after two periods for rookie Alex Auld.
"Our composure wasn't good, our patience wasn't good and our
battle level wasn't good,'' said Canucks coach Marc Crawford. "If
there's one consolation, it's that this was a group loss tonight.''
Minnesota broke open a close game with five unanswered goals in
the second period.
After Park scored on the game's first shot at 3:20, Morrison
tied it with 1:47 left in the first period, and the Canucks
appeared to take over the momentum with a handful of big hits. But
Ronning restored the lead on a long point shot during a 4-on-3
power play 1:08 into the second period, and the Wild never looked back.
"It was an awful performance by pretty much everyone here,''
said Canucks captain Markus Naslund. "The first period we were OK,
but then we got down a goal, and all of a sudden we didn't play the
way we were supposed to.''
Marshall converted Brunette's rebound and Brunette scored a goal
of his own after a bad Canucks line change. With only four Canucks
on the ice, Brunette beat Ed Jovanovski behind the net and roofed a
backhander from the side of the crease.
Gaborik, left unchecked at the side of the net, banged in a
rebound at 16:07.
"The puck was moved very well tonight and we got some lucky
bounces,'' said Ronning, who made it 6-1 just over three minutes
later after picking off Jovanovski's pass in front of the Vancouver
"Personally I was terrible,'' said Jovanovski, who was minus-4
in the second period as the Canucks gave up five goals in a period
for the first time in their playoff history.
Sedin scored with 43 seconds left in the second, and things got
interesting when Roloson bumped Trevor Linden as the teams left the
ice after the period.
Cloutier challenged Roloson and threw a couple of errant punches
before the referees pulled him away. Roloson and Cloutier both
received roughing minors, but Cloutier got an extra penalty for
leaving his crease.
The physical play continued when Gaborik took a hard elbow from
Vancouver defenseman Mattias Ohlund two minutes into the third and
lay prone on the ice. Gaborik had to be helped to the locker room,
but returned midway through the period.
Walz scored shorthanded with 3:40 left.
The road team has won every game in this series since
Game 1. .. The Canucks have led only 38 minutes, 23 seconds -- all
in a Game 3 win -- of the entire series. ... Wild D Brad Bombardir
didn't play after returning in Game 4 from a 30-game absence
because of a back injury. Wild LW Pascal Dupuis left in the third
period with an undisclosed lower body injury. ... Jovanovski failed
to score for the first time in five games, leaving him one short of
Paul Coffey's 1983 record for consecutive games with a goal by a