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Canucks hand Oilers ninth loss in a row, 3-2 in OT

by John Kreiser

The Sedin twins were just too much for the reeling Edmonton Oilers.

Daniel Sedin's power-play goal 1:39 into overtime gave the Vancouver Canucks a 3-2 victory over Edmonton at Rexall Place on Wednesday night, extending the Oilers' losing streak to nine games.

After Edmonton defenseman Denis Grebeshkov was penalized for tripping Mason Raymond 53 seconds into the extra period, the Canucks worked the puck around patiently until Henrik Sedin, stationed in the right circle, whipped a pass across the slot to his twin brother for an easy tap-in past Devan Dubnyk.

"It was great to be able to come back on the road," Daniel Sedin said. "We knew it was going to be a tough game and probably come down to the wire. We were lucky that they took a couple of penalties late in the game that we were able to score on."

Daniel finished with a goal and a pair of assists, while Henrik, the NHL's leading scorer, boosted his total to 70 points with assists on all three goals.

"They played one of their good games of the year," Canucks coach Alain Vigneault said. "They had another strong game. Obviously on the power play they were excellent tonight.

The Oilers played well enough to win on most nights, but were done in by their inability to kill penalties. Vancouver scored on three of its four power plays and moved past Calgary into second place in the Northwest Division, two points behind Colorado.

"Our power play was really strong tonight and was able to win us the game," Vigneault said.

Oilers coach Pat Quinn agreed that Vancouver's power play and his team's inability to kill penalties made the difference.

"Those guys, they eat those situations up, that 4-on-3 stuff," he said. "That's there game. We could obviously have done better there but I guess that's why we are 29th on the penalty kill. We don't do a very good job."

The Oilers fell to 0-7-2 since their last victory, a 3-1 win over Toronto on Dec. 30. This loss was especially painful because they had the lead with less than five minutes left in regulation.

"It was unfortunate we didn't get the result we wanted because we played well and did a lot of good things," said Oilers defenseman Sheldon Souray, who scored for the first time in 16 games. "The difference was special teams."

Edmonton has only one win in its last 17 games and is in the midst of its worst losing streak since a since a 12-game skid from Feb. 25-March 21, 2007.

"It's definitely pretty frustrating the way we've been losing games lately," said forward Sam Gagner, who scored the Oilers' first goal. "We had a lot of passion and intensity and played the game the right way. We have to regroup and use our anger the right way and be better."

Even Vigneault was impressed with the Oilers' performance.

"It was a hard-fought game," he said. "They came out with an edge, and they played really strong."

Edmonton led 2-1 before Sami Salo tied the game with 4:06 remaining. Just seven seconds after Andrew Cogliano went off for holding, the Finnish defenseman moved into the slot, took a pass from Henrik Sedin and took a shot that went off the end of his stick and fluttered into the top left corner past Dubnyk.

When the horn went at the end of regulation, the Oilers had their first point in six games. But Daniel Sedin's goal sent the Oilers home with their fifth consecutive loss on home ice.

Edmonton got the game's first goal with a little help from a bad line change by the Canucks. Gagner went in alone down right wing and ripped a shot from near the faceoff dot past Roberto Luongo at 9:04 for a power-play goal.

Vancouver tied it at 16:23 on a power-play goal by red-hot Alex Burrows, who scored his 22nd of the season and 12th in eight games by tapping home a perfect pass by Henrik Sedin.

Souray, who had gone 15 games without a goal since scoring against Los Angeles on Dec. 15, broke the tie after the Canucks took needless icing early in the period. Marc Pouliot won the draw and Zach Stortini got the puck to Souray at the left point. With Stortini creating a screen, Souray's 45-foot blast from near the left boards rocketed into the far corner past Luongo's glove for his fourth of the season.

Only some fine goaltending by Luongo kept the Oilers from adding to their lead, as Edmonton outshot Vancouver 13-9 in the second period and 25-17 through 40 minutes.

"Roberto gave up a couple of rebounds that were uncharacteristic," Vigneault said, "but when the game was on the line and he needed to make the big saves he did. He gave us the opportunity to get to overtime and win it."

Luongo kept the deficit at one goal just over a minute into the third period when he stoned Patrick O'Sullivan, who took a touch pass from Ryan Potulny and but was denied from 10 feet.

Vancouver defenseman Brad Lukowich nearly tied it just after the six-minute mark when his wrister from the point hit a body in front and clanked off the far post.

Material from team media and wire services was used in this report

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