Actor Lee Majors might have fared better Tuesday night than Niklas Backstrom, the Minnesota Wild's $6-million man.
No sooner had Backstrom re-signed for $6 million US annually over four years than he surrendered four unanswered goals in a 4-2 loss to the Vancouver Canucks at General Motors Place.
"We couldn't stop their momentum," Wild forward Owen Nolan said.
"It was like we were standing and not reacting to anything that was in front of us," Wild head coach Jacques Lemaire lamented.
Alex Burrows scored twice and Pavol Demitra and Steve Bernier had the other goals as the Canucks (33-22-8) skated to their sixth straight win on home ice and 11th in their last 13 games overall.
Henrik Sedin had two assists in support of Canucks netminder Roberto Luongo, who stopped 17 of 19 shots.
"The last 40 minutes, we played really solid," said Burrows, who re-signed with the Canucks for four years and $8 million US on the eve of Wednesday's 3 p.m. ET trade deadline.
"It is huge, it is always my dream," Burrows said of the multi-million dollar contract, which represents a mammoth pay hike from the $525,000 US he is making this season.
"I worked for it. It is not always easy.
"I think you have got to come a long way, take baby step after baby step. Now it is going to be the same way to my next goal - to win a championship."
"He is fitting in well there," Wild forward Dan Fritsche said. "Obviously, his whole line is a huge threat and we're definitely aware of their presence on the ice every time they're out there."
Fritsche and Marek Zidlicky scored on two of Minnesota's first four shots and Backstrom faced 32 shots in defeat for the Wild (30-27-5), losers in their last four games.
Minnesota had prevailed in four of its previous five visits to GM Place.
Not on this night.
Trailing 2-0, Burrows put the Canucks on the board 9:57 into the opening period, and Mats Sundin chipped the puck between two Wild skaters to spring Demitra, who beat Backstrom high to the glove side to tie it 17:56 into the second.
The public address announcer had just confirmed Demitra's 17th goal of the season when Bernier pulled the puck out of a crowd and scored on a slick spin move to make it 3-2 Canucks.
It was Bernier's 14th goal and came with 96 seconds left in a period in which the Canucks outshot the Wild 16-4.
"We just stopped playing," Nolan said. "We worked hard to get those two goals and, for some reason, we just didn't play in the second period."
Burrows completed the scoring in the third period with his second goal of the game on a nifty backhand deke, giving him a career high 18 goals on the season.
"Alex plays with intensity and determination at both ends of the rink," Canucks rookie general manager Mike Gillis said. "He is a fierce competitor."
"He has been contributing in many ways," Luongo noted. "He has got some big goals for us, so it is just nice to see him get rewarded."
With the victory, Vancouver solidified its hold on fifth place in the Western Conference standings, moving four points ahead of the Columbus Blue Jackets and Nashville Predators with 74 points.With files from the Canadian Press