04/24/2015 12:42 EDT | Updated 06/23/2015 05:59 EDT

Vancouver Canucks Avoid Playoff Elimination By Calgary Flames On Sedin Winner

VANCOUVER - The Vancouver Canucks still have a pulse in the Stanley Cup playoffs.

Daniel Sedin scored early in the third period Thursday as the Canucks avoided elimination with a 2-1 victory over the Calgary Flames in Game 5 of their Western Conference quarter-final.

Vancouver still trails the best-of-seven series 3-2, with Game 6 set for Saturday in Calgary.

"These are fun games to be part of. It's do or die," said Sedin. "We played a solid 60 minutes. It was probably our best game of the series. We've had some good periods, but tonight was a 60-minute effort."

Nick Bonino had the other goal for Vancouver, which got 20 saves from Ryan Miller in his first start of the series after Eddie Lack was pulled in Game 4.

"It was just a grind. I thought the guys did a great job getting pucks to the net," said Miller. "We had the puck in their zone. Give the guys credit for working real hard. We created enough to win."

The Canucks snapped a 1-1 tie 1:47 into the third after the Flames iced the puck. Vancouver put out its top line for the offensive zone faceoff and made Calgary pay as Sedin shovelled a rebound through Jonas Hiller's pads for his second goal of the series.

"We've been trying different faceoff plays and tonight it paid off at the right time," said Sedin. "It hit my stick, but not much. I was fortunate.

"I thought I missed it at first, but somehow it went towards the net."

Vancouver entered play last on the penalty kill in the post-season and had to fight off a Calgary power play midway through the period when Dan Hamhuis was whistled for firing the puck over the glass, with Miller making a big stop on Joe Colborne.

The Flames had another man advantage with under six minutes to go when Henrik Sedin went off for hooking, but didn't get a single shot on target against Miller, who was making just his second start since February because of a knee injury and readily admits he's less than 100 per cent healthy.

"You just have to go out there and give it your best," said the 34-year-old. "My mindset was I can still battle, I can still give 100 per cent of my commitment in my mind and my focus."

Calgary has made a living off third-period comebacks this season, but were unable to find an equalizer as Vancouver stayed alive in front of a raucous towel-waving crowd at Rogers Arena.

"We wanted to come out here and throw our best game at them," said Canucks defenceman Kevin Bieksa. "Obviously we had a couple calls against us late in the game, but we felt like we played strong enough, weathered the storm, a couple big saves by Millsy and got the job done."

David Jones scored and Jonas Hiller stopped 41 shots for Calgary, which will have to wait at least another game to secure its first series win since the team's run to the 2004 Stanley Cup final.

"I'm very proud of the players. They did a great job," said Flames head coach Bob Hartley. "We battled and we battled. We're facing a great organization that knows how to win. It's a special team and they deserve the credit for this win."

Down 1-0 after the first, Vancouver tied the game with 6:29 left in the second when Bonino ripped a shot under the crossbar from the faceoff dot for his first of the playoffs.

"We're pressing all period," said Bonino. "I think that goal started 10 minutes before that with every line rolling over."

Calgary could have taken a 2-0 lead earlier in the period, but Colborne hit the post a minute in before Mason Raymond saw the puck roll off his stick on a clear breakaway.

The Flames went up 1-0 just 2:40 into the first period when Jones jumped on a turnover and fired shortside on Miller for his second goal of the series.

Calgary's Dennis Wideman had an opportunity to add to the lead on the power play moments later only to see his shot hit the post and stay out.

Vancouver had some great chances to equalize at the other end, but Jannik Hansen's one-timer from the point clanked off iron before Radim Vrbata's effort on a man advantage also hit the post.

"We didn't get away from our game plan," said Daniel Sedin. "I thought we stuck with it even though they scored the first goal. We kept going at them and shooting the puck and got a little bit more guys in front of the net and it paid off in the end."


Follow @JClipperton_CP on Twitter.

Also on HuffPost

  • April 30, 1994
    Pavel Bure dekes out Mike Vernon in double overtime to score the Game 7 series-winning goal against the Calgary Flames in the opening round of the 1994 playoffs. This was the Canucks third straight overtime goal after being down 3-1 in the series.
  • June 26, 1999
    Ryan Remiorz/Canadidan Press
    Already slated to have the third overall pick in the '99 draft, the Canucks made some crafty trades to end up selecting Henrik and Daniel Sedin second and third overall.
  • May 24, 1994
    Greg Adams stuns the Maple Leafs on a rebound past Toronto netminder Felix Potvin in double overtime to push the Canucks into the 1994 Cup final.
  • April 29, 1982
    Vancouver Canucks
    Upset with the officiating in Game 2 of the Western Conference Final against Chicago, coach Roger Neilson puts a white towel on a stick and waves it in a mock surrender. The iconic “towel power” was born from there. The Canucks won the series and would appear in the Stanley Cup finals for the first time in team history.
  • April 26, 2011
    Alex Burrows does it all himself and scores in overtime of Game 7 to beat the Chicago Blackhawks, sending the Canucks to the next round.
  • May 24, 2011
    The only man on the ice that did not lose sight of the puck, Kevin Bieksa scores a bizarre goal in overtime to beat the San Jose Sharks in Game 5 of the Western Conference finals, sending the Canucks to the Stanley Cup finals.
  • June 17, 1989
    The most electric Canuck player of all time, Pavel Bure was drafted in the sixth round (113th overall) of the 1989 NHL entry draft.
  • March 20, 1996
    Bruce Bennett Studios/Getty Images
    Easily the most lopsided trade in Canuck history, the Canucks acquired Markus Naslund from the Pittsburgh Penguins for Alex Stojanov. Naslund would become Canucks captain for eight years, while Stojanov finished his career with seven points in 107 NHL games.
  • May 11, 1995
    In dire need of a momentum boost in Game 3 of the Western Conference quarterfinals, captain Trevor Linden levels Jeff Norton of the St. Louis Blues through the glass at the Pacific Coliseum. The Canucks went on to beat the Blues 6-1.
  • April 5, 2008
    After spending 20 seasons in the NHL, Trevor Linden plays his final game as a Canuck and receives a series of thunderous ovations from the sold-out crowd at GM Place.
  • Jan. 24, 1999
    AP Photo/James A. Finley
    The day Mike Keenan was fired as coach.
  • April 10, 2010
    Henrik and Daniel Sedin work together to score the 2010 goal of the year on Miikka Kiprusoff. Henrik went on to win the Art Ross Trophy in 2010, followed by brother Daniel in 2011.
  • November 3, 1991
    Steve Babineau/NHLI via Getty Images
    One of the greatest players in Canuck history, Stan “Steamer” Smyl receives a standing ovation as his #12 jersey is raised to the rafters at the Pacific Coliseum.
  • April 11, 2007
    In his first career playoff game, Roberto Luongo turned away 72 shots as the Canucks outlast the Dallas Stars 5-4 in quadruple overtime. It was the sixth longest game in NHL history.
  • May 6, 1982
    Fred Jewell/AP
    Harold Snepsts' moustache forever.
  • December 10, 1980
    After being traded from the Toronto Maple Leafs to the Vancouver Canucks, Tiger Williams scores against his former team, and creates one of the best goal celebrations of all time.