Last night, Nils Hoglander led the charge for the Vancouver Canucks as they beat the Calgary Flames by a 4-2 margin. Hoglander’s two goals pulled the Canucks to their third straight win, which now ties them with the New York Rangers for the NHL points lead.

Canucks goalie Casey DeSmith had a strong game between the pipes, making 22 saves. In addition to Hoglander’s two scores, J.T. Miller and Elias Lindholm also found the back of the net. Despite a late surge from the Flames, the Canucks held on for the win and, by doing so, solidified their position at the top of the NHL standings.

Related: Good News for the Canucks: Three Key Players Recover & Return

Three Quick Reasons for Canucks’ Victory

Quick Reason One: Hoglander’s Heroics

Nils Hoglander’s standout performance was instrumental in the Canucks’ success. Despite limited ice time, Hoglander has shown he can score. Last night, his two goals to start the game proved crucial to the win. His first goal came just 48 seconds into the game. His goals last night provided the boost his team needed to skate away with the win. The two goals together also helped set the tone for the game.

Quick Reason Two: DeSmith’s Strong Goaltending

Casey DeSmith played another solid game between the pipes. He made 22 saves on the 24 shots he faced. In his fifth straight start in place of the injured Thatcher Demko, DeSmith’s play has been consistent. He’s been a stable presence in the crease for the Canucks. All night long, DeSmith made timely saves, including several key saves early in the game. In short, his role was pivotal in the Canucks’ victory.

Quick Reason Three: The Canucks’ Special Teams Excellence

On Saturday, the Canucks’ penalty kill unit was impressive. The opposition failed to score for the fourth straight game. Two Canucks players – Elias Lindholm and Teddy Blueger – helped effectively neutralize the Flames’ power play chances and stopped Calgary from scoring with the man advantage. J.T. Miller’s power-play goal provided helpful insurance late in the game. In short, the Canucks won the special teams battle.

In short, three keys in the Canucks’ win were strong games by Hoglander and DeSimth and the team’s effective special teams.

Related: Three Reasons the Canucks Lost 2-1 to the Capitals on Saturday

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