VANCOUVER, British Columbia (AP) — On a night Daniel Sedin was honored by the Vancouver Canucks, the team’s fourth line stole the show in a one-sided win over the Chicago Blackhawks.
Jannik Hansen scored three goals for his first NHL hat trick, and Bo Horvat and Derek Dorsett combined for five assists as the Canucks beat the Blackhawks 4-1 on Sunday night.
Radim Vrbata had Vancouver’s other goal, and Ryan Miller made 24 saves as the Canucks celebrated Sedin’s 1,000th NHL game with a hard-fought victory.
“We wanted to get the win for him. It’s a measuring stick,” Hansen said. “Chicago is a very good team. We just don’t want to be satisfied with winning a game here and there. We want to be the team that other teams are chasing.”
Hansen, who has scored five goals in three games and eight this season, snapped a 1-1 tie at 6:24 of the third period when he deflected in Dorsett’s shot.
“We strive this year to make it a four-line team,” Hansen said. “Everyone knows the (Sedin) twins are going to get their matchup every night.
“After that it’s up to the nine other guys to supply the secondary scoring. As long as we can do that we’ve got a chance to win games.”
Horvat earned the first three assists of his NHL career, and Dorsett chipped in with two on a fourth line coach Willie Desjardins appears to trust. That never happened under predecessor John Tortorella last season.
“They play smart. They don’t complicate it,” Desjardins said. “Jannik had a great game going to the net. When you go to the net good things can happen.”
Horvat beat Jonathan Toews, a player he tried to emulate as a youngster, on a faceoff that led to Hansen’s winning goal.
“That’s the guy I wanted to model my game after and that’s the guy I watched growing up playing in the NHL,” the 19-year-old Horvat said. “To take a faceoff against him a couple times and to be on the same sheet of ice as him, it’s pretty cool.”
Kris Versteeg had the only goal for Chicago, and Corey Crawford made 26 saves.
“They played well, they played hard,” said Blackhawks coach Joel Quenneville, whose team came in having allowed a league-low eight goals in the third period. “They had a real purpose to the way they played.”
Chicago received a power play with 8:10 left, but Vancouver killed it. The Blackhawks, playing their second of a back-to-back and third game in four nights, pressed for the tying goal late, but were caught out on a rush when Vrbata scored his 10th of the season with 2:24 to go.
“We rolled four lines, we were fresh, we did all the little things that we had to do be successful and everyone’s buying in,” Daniel Sedin said. “That’s a lot of fun when you can do that. No one feels the pressure to score each and every game, but everyone knows they can do it. It’s a great feeling.”
Hansen, who scored 11 goals last season, then won a race for the puck and scored into an empty net with 42 seconds left to finish the hat trick.
“It’s been a while. I think it was back when I was playing in Denmark,” Hansen said of the last time he had a hat trick. “It’s extremely nice to get it (but) it’s not one of those things I have on my bucket list.”
The Blackhawks had won three straight — including a 7-1 thrashing at Edmonton on Saturday — and five of six, but were down 1-0 after the first period before starting to impose their will in the second.
Versteeg, who entered with two goals and four assists in his previous three games, scored his seventh of the season to tie it at 7:55 on the power play. He deflected in a point shot from Duncan Keith.
It just wasn’t enough.
“They’ve had a good start,” Blackhawks forward Patrick Kane said. “It seems like a lot of their guys are re-energized, motivated, they get good goaltending and they’ve had solid contributions from everyone. You look at their so-called third or fourth line tonight, and they had three goals.”
Vancouver opened the scoring at 13:13 of the first on the power play when Dorsett’s pass glanced off Horvat’s stick right to Hansen, who scored over Crawford’s blocker.
“Confidence is a funny thing,” Hansen said. “Once the puck goes in you feel like every shot you take might have a chance.”
NOTES: Henrik Sedin played his 1,000th game with Vancouver in March. … Canucks D Dan Hamhuis sat out with a lower-body injury after getting hurt on Thursday. … Canucks forward Alexandre Burrows missed his second straight game with an upper-body injury. … … The Blackhawks will continue their six-game road trip on Wednesday at Colorado.
Copyright 2014 The Associated Press.