"This franchise has been through a lot," Horvat said, according to NHL.com's David Satriano. "These last four years, not making the playoffs, we've taken it to heart. We wanted to come out and prove ourselves, play hard. We have a great group of guys here, and to finally get a playoff win under our belt in a playoff series, it definitely feels great, but we've got a lot more work to do."
The Canucks have made the playoffs three times in the last eight seasons and haven't advanced past the first round of the postseason since they were one win away from capturing the franchise's first Stanley Cup in 2011.
Horvat, who was selected ninth overall in the 2014 NHL Draft, has been a big part of the Canucks' rebuild. He leads the team in games played (446), goals (120), and points (275) since his rookie season.
The 25-year-old pointed to goaltender Jacob Markstrom as one of the biggest reasons behind the Canucks' regular-season success and their qualifying series win.
"He's been a brick wall for us all year," Horvat said. "He might want a couple back or one of them back tonight, but you know what, he's been our rock ever since Day 1, and we wouldn't be in this position right now without him."
Markstrom was superb through the first three games of the series, allowing five goals on 92 shots, including a shutout in Game 3. He stopped just 25 of the 29 shots he faced in Game 4.
Vancouver will face the loser of the final round-robin game between the Dallas Stars and St. Louis Blues in the first round of the NHL's traditional playoff format.
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