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Benn's OT goal lifts Stars past Canucks

by Steve Hunt

DALLAS -- For the second straight game, the Dallas Stars overcame a big deficit to win.

Jamie Benn scored 2:28 into overtime and the Stars overcame a two-goal deficit in the third period to defeat the Vancouver Canucks 4-3 at American Airlines Center on Thursday.

"It's a good thing that we believe in each other and we can do it, but I don't want to make this a habit or a routine," Benn said. "We want to be going into the third period with leads, and locking down those games."

Benn, who also had an assist and leads the NHL with 17 points, scored the game-winner with a wrist shot from the right circle that beat Canucks goaltender Ryan Miller top shelf to his short side.

"The 3-on-3 can go either way but apparently it's not going to go our way. I don't know what to say," Miller said.

Patrick Sharp had two goals and Jason Demers also scored for Dallas (8-2-0), which trailed 3-1 early in the third period. The win came two nights after the Stars overcame an early three-goal deficit in a 4-3 victory against the Anaheim Ducks.

"What's really good to see is we had a tough time with adversity last year, and this year we've started off where we're learning to battle through some tough situations and come up with some big wins," Stars coach Lindy Ruff said.

Miller made 25 saves, and Alexandre Burrows, Alexander Edler and Radim Vrbata scored for the Canucks (4-2-4), who lost for the first time in four road games this season.

Dallas trailed 3-1 after Vrbata knocked a rebound past goaltender Antti Niemi (29 saves) 10 seconds into the third period.

But Demers scored his second of the season midway through the third period, and Sharp tied it with 4:35 remaining in regulation by redirecting a John Klingberg wrist shot from the high slot past Miller for his second goal of the game and third of the season.

"It's always a concern when you lose in the third, but they got a couple of breaks," Canucks coach Willie Desjardins said. "Then we got a couple of breaks too, but they got it going. They're a good team, they're going to create. They're one of the best offensive teams in the League so it's that they're going to go through the third without chances."

Niemi preserved the tie by stopping Vrbata on a breakaway with 2:11 remaining in the third period.

Dallas had the first 10 shots of the game, but the Canucks' first shot on goal was a penalty shot after Alex Goligoski slashed Burrows on a breakaway at 11:48. Burrows scored on the first successful penalty shot in the NHL this season, firing a wrist shot from the slot that deflected off Niemi's stick and through the five-hole.

"I thought after the first 10 minutes, we played a good game," Desjardins said.

Dallas answered at 15:05 when Sharp scored off the rush. Following some crisp passing by Jyrki Jokipakka and Jason Spezza, Sharp fired a wrist shot from the right point that beat Miller through the five-hole.

"It wasn't a perfect game, but we played well in spurts. One thing we're learning is that we're never out of a game," Sharp said. "We've got some firepower in here, and we've got speed and we're well conditioned. So we're going to play right to the end. That's what happened tonight. We got better in the third period."

Vancouver went back in front at 5:38 of the second when Edler beat Niemi inside the far post with a power-play slap shot from the left point that went over the goaltender's glove. It became 3-1 when Vrbata backhanded the rebound of Daniel Sedin's shot past Niemi. The goal matched the fastest conceded at home to start a third period in Stars franchise history. Rick Vaive of the Toronto Maple Leafs scored 10 seconds into the third period against the Minnesota North Stars at Met Center on Feb. 6, 1986.

"I thought we played good," Canucks forward Daniel Sedin said. "Aside from the first 10 [minutes], I thought we played real well. I think we deserved to win, but that's the way it is. They're a good offensive team and they're going to get chances. We let one slip away but we got to keep just playing the same way and I think we'll get our wins."

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