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Game 17: One that got away

by Daniel Fung / Vancouver Canucks
The Canucks opened their four-game road trip on Tuesday night in Phoenix managing to snag a single point against a very tough Coyotes team but it's the point that got away that they will remember most from this game.

Antoine Vermette's goal in the sixth round of the shootout stood up as the winner as the Coyotes slipped past the Canucks by a final score of 3-2.

With the shootout loss Vancouver's record on the season fell to 10-5-2 while Phoenix, a new division rival for the Canucks, improved to 11-3-2.

After Radim Vrbata and Alex Burrows traded goals in the second round of the shootout, the Canucks had three successive opportunities for a skate-off winner but failed on each attempt with Chris Higgins and Ryan Kesler striking iron while Daniel Sedin's opportunity was denied by Coyotes' netminder Mike Smith.

Henrik Sedin had one final chance to extend the shootout but his attempt never even reached the net as he lost control of the puck on a deke.

Dan Hamhuis and Kesler had goals for the Canucks in regulation, while Vrbata and Shane Doan tallied for the Coyotes.

Roberto Luongo, making his fourth consecutive start for the Canucks, stopped 30 of 32 shots through regulation and overtime in the defeat while Smith made 31 saves on 33 Canucks shots through 65 minutes for the victory.

The Canucks continue their four-game road trip on Thursday night when they take on the San Jose Sharks.

INCHING CLOSER TO HISTORY: Henrik Sedin extended his career-high point streak to 12 games after drawing the primary assist on Kesler's power play goal early in the second period. He has three goals and 14 points during this current stretch. He now is just three games away from tying the club record for longest point streak at 15 games held by Petr Nedved and Todd Bertuzzi.

LAYING THE BODY: The Coyotes, perhaps thanks to a little help from the hometown stats crew, officially doled out 44 hits on the Canucks on Tuesday night. It's the most by a Canucks' opponent this season. Appropriately, Rob Klinkhammer led the way with eight hits.

SHOOTOUT STATS: Mike Santorelli is the only Canuck this season to be featured in all three shootouts the team has been involved in this season. He is 1-for-3 this season and 11-for-23 in his career on shootout attempts...The Canucks fell to 1-2 this season in games ending in shootouts...Santorelli and Burrows are the only Canucks that have managed to score in a shootout this season.

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