Reid Boucher scored a goal and added an assist as the visiting Vancouver Canucks beat the Dallas Stars 4-1 at the American Airlines Center on Sunday night.
Boucher, who has spent most of the season in the minors, had a rare two-point night since being called up earlier this month to fill in for injured star rookie Brock Boeser (back).
The Canucks earned only their second win in the past 10 games. It was only Vancouver’s second win in the past 16 meetings with Dallas. The Stars suffered their eighth straight loss and saw their flickering playoff hopes fade further.
Nic Dowd, Jake Virtanen and Tyler Motte, with an empty-netter in the final minute, also scored for the Canucks. Jussi Jokinen provided two assists for the victors.
Mattias Janmark, with a shorthanded marker, tallied for the Stars.
Vancouver goaltender Jacob Markstrom finished with 30 saves on 31 shots, while Dallas netminder Kari Lehtonen struggled, blocking 23 of 26. The Canucks scored on 2 of 6 power plays, but the Stars went 0-for-3 in man-advantage situations.
Stars coach Ken Hitchcock wanted his team to come out with more energy after allowing three unanswered goals, including the game-winner with only 11.1 seconds remaining, in a loss to Boston on Friday. However, the Canucks, playing their third game in four nights and destined to miss the playoffs for the third straight season, displayed more enthusiasm at times.
The Canucks trailed 1-0, but responded with four unanswered goals.
Janmark opened the scoring on a shorthanded breakaway at 16:54 of the first period. After beating Canucks defenseman Alex Edler to a loose puck, he raced in on goal and beat Markstrom with a shot to the stick side.
But Boucher drew the Canucks even on the same power play just 30 seconds later, redirecting Jokinen’s pass. Jokinen earned revenge of sorts, because Dallas defenseman Stephen Johns had taken a penalty for tripping him.
Dowd put the Canucks up 2-1 with only one second left in another power play, at 14:43 of the second period. After digging the puck from the skates of Stars defenseman Dan Hamhuis, a former Canuck, Dowd put a shot off the goal post and then saw it hit the back of Lehtonen’s skate and go in.
Jokinen drew the second assist on that marker. He now has four points in eight games since joining the Canucks from Columbus as part of the Thomas Vanek trade.
Virtanen gave the Canucks a 3-1 lead midway through the third period as he squeezed a weak wrist shot from a sharp angle between Lehtonen and the post.
A television camera caught Hitchcock staring at his goaltender in disbelief after the goal.
Motte capped the scoring with an unassisted empty-net goal with 41 seconds remaining.
—Field Level Media