ALSO ON SLAM!
Friday, October 15, 1999
Hurricanes 4, CANUCKS 1
Fichaud stellar, but denied shutout
VANCOUVER, British Columbia (AP) -- Ron Francis had an assist to tie Mario Lemieux for sixth place on the NHL career points list in helping the Carolina Hurricanes to a 4-1 win over the Vancouver Canucks on Friday night.
Eric Fichaud, making his first start in over 10 months, stopped 15 shots to record first NHL victory since Nov. 29, 1997 when he was with the New York Islanders.
Fichaud came 35.3 seconds away from recording his second career shutout, but Vancouver's Andrew Cassels scored a power-play goal.
Jeff O'Neill scored twice, while Sami Kapanen and Bates Battaglia had a goal and assist each as the Hurricanes, coming off a loss and two straight ties, improved their record to 3-1-2.
The assist upped Francis' point totoal to 1,494. The 19-year veteran is also sixth on the all-time assists list with 1,042, seven behind Gordie Howe.
The Hurricanes sealed the win by scoring three goals on five shots over a 4:26 span to build a 4-0 lead with 6:47 left in the second period. Appearing to give up, the Canucks went more than 12 minutes before managing their first shot on net in the third period and finished with three in the period.
Vancouver has now lost two in a row after opening the season with three straight victories. The Canucks now embark on a six-game, 11-day road trip, the team's longest of the season.
Kapanen, working a give-and-go with Battaglia on a 2-on-1 break, opened the scoring 5:45 into the game.
O'Neill, who stripped Canuck Darby Hendrickson of the puck behind the Vancouver net, scored on a wrap-around 8:45 into the second period. Francis, digging the puck out of the corner, then set up Battaglia for a one-timer that put the Hurricanes up 3-0 one minute later. O'Neill capped the surge by beating goalie Kevin Weekes with a high shot from six feet out.
Vancouver was forced to go with Weekes after No. 1 goalie Garth Snow fractured the index finger on his blocking hand during Wednesday's 4-3 overtime loss to the Calgary Flames.
Snow, who will be out a minimum four weeks, initially suffered the injury in a preseason game and missed the first two games of the regular season before being cleared to play. Fearing opposing teams would target Snow's injured hand, the Canucks first described Snow's original injury as a pulled groin.
With Snow out indefinitely, the Canucks called up Alfie Michaud from their American Hockey League affiliate in Syracuse.
Canucks president and general manager Brian Burke said he's not comfortable going with two young goalies and will seriously consider adding a more experienced netminder either by trade or through the waiver draft.
"It is something I'm comfortable with going with those two guys? No. That's an issue we're going to address," said Burke.
Said Snow: "It's tough but I'm not going to feel sorry for myself. I never have. I'm just going to come back stronger."
----------------------------- Carolina 1 3 0--4 Vancouver 0 0 1--1 ----------------------------- FIRST PERIOD -- Scoring: 1, Carolina, Kapanen 4 (Battaglia, Hill), 5:45. SECOND PERIOD -- Scoring: 2, Carolina, Oneill 1 (unassisted), 8:47. 3, Carolina, Battaglia 2 (Francis, Kapanen), 9:47. 4, Carolina, Oneill 2 (Roberts, Wesley), 13:13. Penalties: Gelinas, Car (Obstr holding), 5:29. THIRD PERIOD -- Scoring: 5, Vancouver, Cassels 2 (power play) (Hawgood, Jovanovski), 19:24. Penalties: Mogilny, Van (interference), 2:47; Baron, Van (roughing), 5:43; Wesley, Car (Obstr holding), 10:03; Brashear, Van (high sticking), 12:51; Kron, Car (boarding), 17:34. Shots on goal: --------------------------------- Carolina 5 14 3--22 Vancouver 4 9 3--16 --------------------------------- Power-play Conversions: Car - 0 of 3, Van - 1 of 3. Goalies: Carolina, Fichaud (16 shots, 15 saves; record: 1-0-0). Vancouver, Weekes (22, 18; record: 2-1-0). A:13,701. Referees: B Mccreary, Van Massenhoven. Linesmen: Henderson, Wheler.