J.T. Miller’s goal and assist led the Vancouver Canucks in a 4-3 win over the Minnesota Wild on Tuesday, evening their qualifying series at one win apiece.
Tanner Pearson, Brock Boeser and Bo Horvat also scored for the Canucks, with Jacob Markstrom turning in a 32-save performance for the win.
Kevin Fiala had two goals and Luke Kunin scored the other for Minnesota. Wild starter Alex Stalock made 24 stops in the loss.
Game 3 is Thursday when lower-seeded Minnesota will be the home team for the first time in the series.
Defenceman Matt Dumba continued to raise his right fist on the Wild’s bench through the pre-game anthems to bring attention to racism and social injustice.
Standing behind Dumba, teammate Jonas Brodin put his hand on Dumba’s shoulder in support Tuesday.
Vancouver moved the puck with more authority than they did in a 3-0 loss to open the series Sunday.
The Canucks ranked 20th out of 24 teams in combined playoff game experience (480) coming into the post-season. Minnesota (609) ranked 16th.
Forwards Jake Virtanen and Loui Eriksson replaced Tyler Toffoli and Adam Gaudette in Vancouver’s lineup for Game 2.
Minnesota was scoreless on six power-play chances, while Vancouver went 1-for-7.
Canucks winger Antoine Roussel took a deflection in the head that drew blood five minutes into the third period.
Fiala scored at 17:32 and with eight seconds remaining in the game, beating Markstom with high wrist shots in both cases.
Minnesota took consecutive minors midway through the third.
Horvat made good on one, getting his stick on a Quinn Hughes ice-skimming shot from the point to beat Stalock’s glove at 6:22.
Vancouver was up 3-1 by 8:42 of the second. Boeser swatted in an Elias Pettersson rebound that Stalock couldn’t control.
Markstrom stoning an all-alone Eric Staal in the slot preserved Vancouver’s 2-1 lead early in the second period.
Miller scored Vancouver’s second goal on a solo effort at 3:04.
He skated the puck out of Minnesota’s zone, dragged the puck back and beat Stalock top corner with a quick release from inside the top of the faceoff circle.
Kunin scored short-handed with 2:44 left in the opening period to draw the Wild even. Zach Parise dealt Kunin the puck from the far boards and Kunin beat Markstrom with a wrist shot.
Kunin was fined US$1,000 for unsportsmanlike conduct in Game 1. He’d delivered a whack to the leg of Vancouver’s Micheal Ferland from the Wild’s bench.
Kunin was retaliating for Ferland spearing seated teammate Ryan Hartman seated on the bench. Ferland was fined $5,000.
Pearson scored on Vancouver’s first shot of the game just 24 seconds after puck drop.
He made the most of a beneficial bounce off the boards by corralling the puck and snapping past Stalock’s glove from the top of the faceoff circle.