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Canucks outlast Golden Knights for 4-3 win, with Garland scoring twice

Vancouver Canucks' Conor Garland scores on Vegas Golden Knights goaltender Logan Thompson during the second period of an NHL hockey game in Vancouver, on Monday, April 8, 2024. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Ethan Cairns Vancouver Canucks' Conor Garland scores on Vegas Golden Knights goaltender Logan Thompson during the second period of an NHL hockey game in Vancouver, on Monday, April 8, 2024. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Ethan Cairns

In a game full of milestones, it was Conor Garland's face that stood out Monday.

Not only did the Vancouver Canucks winger play his 400th regular-season NHL game, he scored twice - including his 100th goal - and helped his team to a 4-3 victory over the Vegas Golden Knights.

Several Canucks players also sported Garland's visage on T-shirts forward J.T. Miller made to commemorate the 400-game mark.

“I mean, I wish it wasn't me on it,” Garland said with a smile. “It's nice to come in and everybody has a laugh in the morning. It's a big game for us tonight and it relieves some stress.”

The Canucks (48-22-8) sit atop the Pacific Division standings but have struggled to beat playoff-bound teams in recent weeks.

That changed Monday.

The Golden Knights (42-27-8) took an early 2-0 lead, but Vancouver persevered and took the lead late in the second, then withstood pressure from the visitors in the third.

“These are big tests for you. Stanley Cup champs over there and we had a really good third,” said Canucks coach Rick Tocchet. “These are the moments that you look for as we go forward. When the pressure hits, you've got to be calm. Even at the end, there were some tense moments but I thought we did a nice job.”

Brock Boeser put away his 40th goal of the season - marking the first time he's hit the milestone in his career - and added an assist for Vancouver. Quinn Hughes scored and notched a helper and Miller contributed three assists en route to hitting a career-high 100 points (35 goals, 65 assists).

Milestones aren't what the Canucks are playing for, Miller said, especially at this time of the year.

“I was really just happy that when we gave up two tonight, we didn't crumble. We persevered and stayed with it and even if we didn't come out with the win, I liked the way we played,” he said. “It was a step in the right direction for the group.”

Jack Eichel had two goals and an assist for the Golden Knights, and Noah Hanifin registered one of each.

Arturs Silovs stopped 20 of 23 shots for Vancouver in his third start of the season and Logan Thompson made 26 saves for Vegas, which holds the Western Conference's second wild-card spot.

“I thought it was a pretty even game,” said Golden Knights coach Bruce Cassidy.

“At the end of the day, they got rewarded for getting into interior ice around the front of our net, obviously did a good job screening the goalie and finding rebounds around there. So for us it's controlling those rebounds or boxing out, clearing those rebounds.”

The Canucks took their first lead of the night with 89 seconds remaining in the second period.

Thompson stopped a shot from Miller but couldn't hang on to the puck and Garland came around the back of the net to tip it in for his second goal of the night and 18th of the season.

Chants of “Con-or Gar-land!” echoed through Rogers Arena midway through the period and again after he was named the game's first star.

“I might be the worst player ever to have their name chanted in a stadium,” Garland said with a smile after the win. “But no, it's obviously cool. That's the reward of playing in a Canadian market, playing in a big market like Vancouver.”


Both sides put their special teams to use Monday, with Vancouver going 2-for-3 with the man advantage. Vegas went 2-for-4.

“I could just tell the power play, it was like 'OK, here we go.' They just wanted to grab it and then they seized it, getting those two big goals,” Tocchet said.


Hughes registered his 200th assist over the last three seasons. The only other defencemen to hit 200 assists over three seasons are Bobby Orr and Paul Coffey.

Miller contributed his 400th NHL assist on Garland's second goal of the night.


Tomas Hertl played his first game for the Golden Knights and contributed an assist on Hanifin's goal.

Vegas acquired the Czech forward from the San Jose Sharks in a blockbuster trade on March 8 but Hertl had been sidelined by injury until Monday.

The Golden Knights created room for him on the roster Monday by placing left-winger William Carrier on long-term injured reserve and sending centre Brendan Brisson to the AHL's Henderson Silver Knights.


Canucks: Host the Arizona Coyotes on Wednesday.

Knights: Visit the Edmonton Oilers on Wednesday.

This report by The Canadian Press was first published April 8, 2024. Top Stories

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