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Canucks battle Kings in B.C.

437 Views 0 Replies 1 Participant Last post by  panoo
(Sports Network) - One of the NHL's hottest clubs prior to the All-Star break meets one of its coldest tonight at Vancouver's General Motors Place, where the Canucks will host the lowly Los Angeles Kings.

Vancouver is 10-1-1 since Christmas and has moved into a tie with the Calgary Flames for first place in the Northwest Division because of the surge. The Kings have gone in an entirely opposite direction, having lost each of its last seven games.

Los Angeles hasn't dropped eight in a row since an 11-game slide to close out the 2003-04 regular-season.

The Kings' latest setback came last Saturday at home to the Phoenix Coyotes, who skated away with a 3-2 decision when Travis Roche scored with just 1:39 left to play.

Alexander Frolov and Anze Kopitar tallied in the loss, Los Angeles' ninth in 11 outings. The Kings have amassed just 38 points on the season, the lowest total in the Western Conference and second-fewest overall in the league.

Sean Burke stopped 23-of-24 shots in his first start since the Kings claimed him off waivers from Tampa Bay. The veteran goaltender was forced to exit 3:20 into the third period due to dehydration, however, and backup Yutaka Fukufiji yielded two late goals to take the loss.

Los Angeles will begin a three-game road trip tonight. The club has lost five straight as the visitor and is a poor 5-16-0 away from home on the season.

Vancouver looks to rebound from Saturday's 4-3 shootout defeat at Buffalo in the finale of a four-game road swing. The Sabres' Chris Drury sent the game into overtime by scoring with 39.1 seconds remaining in regulation, while Ales Kotalik notched the deciding goal during the shootout.

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