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NHL Preview from The Sports Network
Saturday, November 23rd (All times Eastern)
Chicago Blackhawks (15-4-4) at Vancouver Canucks (12-8-4), 10 p.m.
(SportsNetwork.com) - The Vancouver Canucks halted their longest losing streak of the season with a superb offensive effort on Friday. They'll hope to stay hot when the defending Stanley Cup champion Chicago Blackhawks visit Rogers Arena on Saturday.
Vancouver lost five straight during a recent 0-3-2 stretch, marking the club's longest losing streak since an 0-5-3 skid from Jan. 9-31, 2009. However, the Canucks were able to put the slump to rest on Friday when they routed the visiting Columbus Blue Jackets.
Henrik Sedin scored a pair of goals and Daniel Sedin added a goal and two assists to help the Canucks roll to a 6-2 win over Columbus. The offensive outburst came after Vancouver scored only six times during its recent slide.
Zack Kassian, Alexander Edler and Jeremy Welsh added goals for the Canucks, while Roberto Luongo needed to make only 14 saves for the win.
"We needed to get the puck to the net and keep shooting and we did that. We played well, we hadn't scored a lot, so it feels good," said Kassian.
Vancouver had been 0-1-2 on a six-game homestand before posting Friday's easy victory. The Canucks, who will complete their stay at Rogers Arena against Los Angeles on Monday, are 5-4-2 on home ice this season.
The Blackhawks, meanwhile, have won two of their last three games and are coming off Thursday's 6-3 triumph at Winnipeg. The victory came one game after Chicago began a stretch of seven straight games on the road by losing 5-1 at Colorado on Tuesday.
Chicago rebounded nicely from the loss in Denver, scoring three times against the Jets in the third period of Thursday's game. The Blackhawks held a 2-0 lead earlier in the contest, but allowed Winnipeg to tie it up at 3-3 by the end of 40 minutes.
Jonathan Toews had a goal and three assists to lead Chicago in the win, which improved the Blackhawks' road record this season to 6-3-1.
Marian Hossa and Patrick Kane each had a goal and an assist for the Blackhawks. Hossa returned to action after missing the previous three games with a lower-body injury.
Patrick Sharp, Ben Smith and Brandon Saad also lit the lamp, while Corey Crawford stopped 22-of-25 shots for the victors.
"I really liked the way we played tonight," said Blackhawks coach Joel Quenneville. "I thought we answered the bell at the start of the game, and answered the bell when they had their run there in the second, but I thought we had an excellent first and third period, and did a lot of good things to play the right way."
Vancouver won two of three meetings against the Blackhawks during last year's lockout-shortened campaign and the clubs have split the last 12 regular-season encounters in this series. Chicago has lost three in a row and four of five in Vancouver.
11/23 10:57:31 ET
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