Calvin de Haan made Andrew Ladd's homecoming special.
A minute-and-a-half into overtime, de Haan took a cross ice feed in the neutral zone from Ryan Strome, skated into the Vancouver zone, and used a stutter step move to get separation from Sven Baertschi. He cut into the circle and sent a perfect pass through two Canuck defenders to find Ladd's stick set up perfectly along the ice in the crease for the game-winning goal.
For Ladd, a British Columbia native, is was his 19th goal of the season and his 11th in the past 20 games.
"It's always fun to score in front of family and friends," Ladd told MSG Network's Shannon Hogan. "The big thing is that extra point. With everything going on right now, we need to get as many points as possible, and that was the message after they scored [to tie the game at the end of regulation], let's go get that other one and win this game, so it's nice it worked out."
This was a beautiful play by de Haan, and I'm glad it worked, since he was down low and only Strome stood between the Canucks and Thomas Greiss. Of course, that's the thing with the 3-on-3 overtime: you have to seize your opportunities when you get them and make the most out of them, and Calvin certainly did that to get the Isles that extra point.
But as pretty as the move was, give Ladd credit for getting right to the crease and putting his blade right where it needed to be to cash this one in. He's been a completely different player since he rested up his back and got healthy, and it's paid huge dividends for this team down the stretch. It's worth noting that Ladd was brought in, in part, for his leadership, and it's hard to argue with how the Isles have been able to bounce back from all their adversity this season, sometimes even in the midst of a game. Thursday night was proof positive of that resilience, and I don't think it's a coincidence that Ladd was right in the middle of another big win.