Share story

VANCOUVER, B.C. — Vancouver goalie Roberto Luongo left early because of an injury, putting a damper on the Canucks’ latest victory.

Long after Luongo departed, defenseman Chris Tanev broke a tie in the third period and Vancouver beat the Winnipeg Jets 2-1 on Sunday night.

Luongo had his leg clipped by big Winnipeg defenseman Dustin Byfuglien and was knocked flat during a goal-mouth collision with Blake Wheeler. The goalie left a few minutes later, with 3:30 left in the first period.

Canucks coach John Tortorella said only that Luongo had a lower-body injury and is day to day. Vancouver’s next game is Dec. 29 at Calgary.

This week, save 90% on digital access.

Tortorella said Luongo had spoken with trainer Mike Burnstein briefly a couple of shifts earlier, but the coach had no idea the goalie was in any trouble.

“I didn’t know,” Tortorella said. “It surprised me.”

The Olympic gold medalist was replaced by Eddie Lack. Luongo is one of the goalies being considered to play for Canada in the Sochi Olympics.

Lack made 15 saves to improve to 6-2-0.

“I was a bit surprised, for sure,” Lack said. “I didn’t hear anything before that he was hurt. I just stuck my glove on and got out there.”

Tanev scored at 10:23 of the third period. He took a pass in the high slot from Zack Kassian and ripped a shot past goalie Ondrej Pavelec.

“I’m just trying to get pucks to the net,” Tanev said. “It seemed like the seas parted when I got it. It was awesome when I walked into it.”

Brad Richardson opened the scoring for Vancouver on a power play midway through the first period.

Evander Kane tied it on a power play in the second.

Vancouver improved to 22-11-6 and is tied with San Jose for fifth place in the Western Conference. The Canucks have won nine of their past 11 games. Winnipeg has lost five of seven.

Custom-curated news highlights, delivered weekday mornings.