(Sports Network) - There is no such thing as a must-win hockey game in November, but the Canucks did have an important meeting earlier this week in Minnesota.
The Wild have been the class of the Northwest Division in the early going. They came into Thursday's contest holding a three-point lead over the Canucks. It was a good opportunity for Vancouver to send a message to the Wild by dealing Minnesota its first loss at home.
As it happened, the Canucks weren't able to send that message and the Wild remained unbeaten at home. Minnesota posted a 5-2 victory as Brian Rolston and Todd White each scored a goal and had an assist.
Ryan Kesler and Jan Bulis each had a goal and Roberto Luongo stopped 19 shots for the Canucks, who have dropped two straight games. They are still second in the division -- five points in back of the Wild.