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Burrows scores short-handed as Canucks knock off Oilers 5-2

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EDMONTON - The Vancouver Canucks were called on the carpet by GM Dave Nonis after losing 8-2 to Philadelphia on Wednesday.

No similar tongue-lashing will be required for now. Alex Burrows' short-handed marker in the second period stood up as the winner as the Canucks rebounded with a convincing 5-2 victory over the Edmonton Oilers on Friday night.

Henrik Sedin, Rick Rypien, Markus Naslund and Brendan Morrison also scored for the Canucks, while Sheldon Souray and Raffi Torres responded for Oilers.

Vancouver improved to 2-2-0. Edmonton has now lost three in a row to sit at 2-3-0.

The Canucks players were eager to erase the memory of the thumping received from the Flyers and felt this game went a long way towards that.

"We played a really good road game," said Vancouver goalie Roberto Luongo, who stopped 28 shots for the win.

"We have to have that same effort and commitment every night. It's an 82 game season and there are going to be lots of ups and downs and that was a pretty big down last game. It was good to respond this way."

Morrison, who had a two-point night, says their effort was a move forward for the team.

" We're still a work in progress but it was a step in the right direction.You want to show that you have learned after something bad happens.

"We still have a lot of kinks to work out. It still didn't seem like we were in sync in our zone. We were giving away a lot of pucks. "We were a bit better offensively except for the second when we really didn't have many shots. But two of them went in so we'll take quality over quantity."

"The bottom line was we had a much better work ethic," added Burrows. "We battled a lot harder around the boards and made smarter plays, higher percentage plays. That was the key right there."

The Oilers are now the team looking the most in need of adjustments and they made a couple moves following the game, sending Robert Nilsson and J.F. Jacques to Springfield of the AHL and calling up forwards Rob Schremp and Zack Stortini.

"It's not the time of year to start naming names," said Oilers head coach Craig MacTavish. "Collectively, it falls on all of us to find a way to win hockey games.

"We had a lot of opportunities, it just seemed at times we were a little impatient. It was a frustrating game."

MacTavish says the lone bright spot on the night was the play of 18-year-old rookie Sam Gagner, who had two assists and over 20 minutes in ice time.

"I thought he was terrific," he said. "He made all kinds of plays and did a good job on the power play. He's really impressed me with the decisions he makes with the puck.

"If you want to take a positive out of the game it was the way he played."

Canucks centre Ryan Kesler was in the lineup just one game after being cross-checked in the face by Philadelphia's Jesse Boulerice on Wednesday. Boulerice received a 25-game suspension Friday, the longest single-season ban in NHL history, for the incident.

Vancouver started the scoring midway through the first as Daniel Sedin sent a pass from behind the net to Henrik Sedin, who batted it out of mid-air and past Edmonton starter Mathieu Garon for his first of the year.

The Canucks had a 2-0 lead two and a half minutes later as Garon was unable to squeeze his glove shut on a shot from Jeff Cowan with Rypien there to backhand the puck into a wide open net.

Edmonton cut into the lead with just 10 seconds left to go in the first frame as Gagner fed a cross-ice pass to Souray at the right face-off dot, as he unleashed a rocket past Luongo for his first as an Oiler.

Vancouver was able to restore their two-goal cushion three minutes into the second as Rypien was able to spring Burrows on a short-handed breakaway and he beat Garon glove-side, prompting Dwayne Roloson to come in and replace Garon in net.

Edmonton's power play finally came through late in the second as the Oilers got their first goal in 19 extra-man situations so far this season. Torres picked up his own rebound and slid it through the legs of Luongo.

But the Canucks responded just 20 seconds later as Morrison walked through the Oiler defence and wired a shot off of Roloson's shoulder for a 4-2 advantage after 40 minutes.

Naslund put the game away for the Canucks with two minutes to score as his weak shot from the side of the net trickled past a surprised Roloson.

The Oilers and Canucks will have a rematch on Saturday night in Vancouver.

Notes: Prior to the game the Canucks recalled centre Rick Rypien from the Manitoba Moose of the AHL. Rypien, who had two points on the night, put Oilers defenceman Mathieu on the injured list with a concussion after a hard hit in a pre-season game between the two teams... Oilers captain Ethan Moreau missed his fifth game with a foot injury... The Canucks started the 2006-07 campaign with a 1-6-1 record in their first eight games against teams from the Northwest Division before going 15-7-2 in the next 24 games against the Northwest to finish with a 16-13-3 record overall. Vancouver's lone win in the first eight games came against the Oilers. Vancouver won the season series against Edmonton with a 5-2-1 record.

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