Vancouver will try to bounce back Monday night on the road against the injury-riddled Predators, whose playoff hopes are all but dead.
The Canucks (23-12-6) had won four in a row and 10 of 12 before a 4-3 loss at Colorado on Saturday. Though their 52 points still has them atop the Northwest Division and in third place in the Western Conference, they missed out on a chance to increase that total with Saturday's defeat as they gave up a goal with 7.6 seconds left.
"Obviously, that's not the way we wanted to end it," said Jason Garrison, who tallied his sixth goal and has five points in five games. "They capitalized on their opportunities."
Not only could Vancouver at least have scraped out a point if it had held steady just moments longer, the Canucks also squandered a lead twice in the final period. They own a five-point edge over Minnesota for first place in the Northwest.
"We maybe thought they were going to fold, but they came out hard, they out-competed us," said Henrik Sedin. "That can't happen. That is why they beat us."
The Predators (15-20-8) are still mathematically alive in the playoff picture, but those chances are microscopic as they are nine points out of eighth place with five games to play. And they haven't at all resembled a team capable of a big run down the stretch, with Sunday's 3-0 home loss to Detroit marking their sixth straight defeat and fifth in a row at home.
Those six players have accounted for 81 points, or 30.8 percent of the team total.
The attrition has forced coach Barry Trotz to rely on a younger guard of players, including 18-year-old Filip Forsberg, who made his NHL debut and was one of six rookies in the team's lineup Sunday.
"It's not probably a great answer for the fans from that standpoint," Trotz said. "But it's reality. We can't do anything about all the veterans and all our top players, especially up front, that are hurt. We don't have any excuses for it. We just got to try to play through it and get a win."
Vancouver has won five of the last seven regular-season meetings, including two earlier this year. The Canucks' season high for goals came in a 7-4 win at home on March 14 as Andrew Ebbett and Jannik Hansen each recorded one goal and two assists. Pekka Rinne, who is 1-5-2 despite a 1.87 goals-against average in his last eight contests, was pulled in favor of Chris Mason after allowing four goals on just 12 shots.
Sedin has 10 points over his last seven games against Nashville and eight in his last five contests overall.