SPORTS

After dropping opener at home to Flames, Canucks treating Game 2 as 'must-win'

04/17/2015 03:57 EDT | Updated 07/03/2015 05:59 EDT
VANCOUVER - The Vancouver Canucks have played some of their best hockey this season when facing adversity.

Down 1-0 in their Western Conference quarter-final against the Calgary Flames, they'll need that type of effort when the two teams square off again Friday night.

"It seems when we lose a game everyone's really focused to get back on the winning track," Canucks forward Daniel Sedin said after the morning skate. "Hopefully it's the same thing tonight.

"I don't think we played a bad game last game, but we lost. Tonight we look at it as a must-win."

Vancouver's ability to shake of defeats is one reason why it's back in the playoffs after missing out last spring. The team has lost consecutive games in regulation just once since the all-star break.

"That's your leadership," said Canucks head coach Willie Desjardins. "If you have good leaders it makes a difference and we have real good character in our room."

Vancouver played well for the first two periods against Calgary in the series opener before the Flames scored twice in the third to snatch a 2-1 victory.

"We try and play hard every night, and if you do that you tend to be more successful and not have those stretches where you go three, four, five games losing," said Canucks forward Jannik Hansen. "We need to get back at what's making us successful.

"We did that in the first game, just not for the full 60 (minutes)."

Flames head coach Bob Hartley wants an even better performance from his team against a desperate opponent before the series shifts to Calgary.

"We know the Canucks will be pushing hard," he said. "This is an organization with tremendous character, great history.

"They'll want to win this game. It's going to be a long series."

NOTES — Canucks defenceman Kevin Bieksa will be a game-time decision with an undisclosed injury. ... The Flames will go with the same lineup as Game 1. ... Vancouver has lost seven straight at home in the playoffs dating back to the 2011 Stanley Cup final. The club has also lost six straight post-season games overall and 11 of its last 12.

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