Red Wings waste another third-period lead in 3-2 loss to Canucks
The bye week, the All-Star weekend, that time away from the regular season schedule can’t get here quick enough for the Red Wings.
With just one more game remaining before a nine-day break between games, the Wings could use the time off.
They lost a third-period lead for the second consecutive game Sunday, letting Vancouver score twice as the Canucks rallied for a 3-2 victory.
Antoine Roussel scored a deflected goal at 13 minutes, 13 seconds of the third period, breaking a 2-2 tie, after Vancouver’s Bo Horvat tied the game at 7:27 off a scramble, as the Canucks erased a 2-1 deficit entering the final 20 minutes.
Thomas Vanek scored a goal (his 10th) and set up Frans Nielsen (Nielsen’s 8th), both in the second period, as the Wings took the lead.
But, just as Calgary game Friday, the Wings couldn’t close out the game.
Star rookie Elias Pettersson scored for Vancouver in the first period.
Goaltender Jonathan Bernier stopped 28 shots, but was victimized by those two third-period goals, as his hard-luck season continues.
With their second consecutive loss, the Wings (18-25-7) remained last in the Eastern Conference.
► Detroit's goals: Nielsen opened the Wings’ scoring at 8:34 of the second period, one-timing a pass from Anthony Mantha near the dot, as the Wings capitalized on a bad Vancouver change. Vanek put the Wings ahead 2-1, tapping a pass from Danny DeKeyser at the post.
► Second-line stars: The line of Vanek, Nielsen and Mantha accounted for both goals and were dangerous the entire game. The Wings had been searching for secondary scoring behind Dylan Larkin’s line, so this was a needed development.
► Remember me? Vanek starred with the Canucks last season — one of the eight teams he’s played with in his career — before being dealt to Columbus at the trade deadline. Vanek tied with Larkin for a team-high six shots on net, and had a plus-1 rating in 17:51 of ice time.
► Vancouver goals: Pettersson opened the scoring with a deflection in the first period, his rookie-leading 23rd goal. Horvat scored his 18th in the third period, tying the game off a faceoff scramble. Roussel broke the tie with his fifth goal, redirecting a shot from Jake Virtanen from the top of the slot.
► Rookie sensation: Pettersson returned to the lineup after missing the last five games with a knee sprain. In 15:36, Pettersson made an immediate impact with his deflection for a goal, and having a puck go off him and land on Horvat’s stick for the tying goal. Pettersson leads all NHL rookies with 23 goals, 21 assists and 44 points (in 39 games).
► Lineup switch: It was an unhappy homecoming for rookie defenseman Dennis Cholowski, who was a healthy scratch. The Vancouver native sat in favor of rookie Filip Hronek, who had two shots, and minus-1, in 14:45.
► Next: The Wings look to salvage one victory on this three-game western Canada trip Tuesday in Edmonton (9 p.m./NBCSN/97.1).