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Freshly-inked Sedin twins try to lead Canucks past Leafs
(SportsNetwork.com) - Armed with new matching contracts, twin brothers Henrik and Daniel Sedin will try to lead the Vancouver Canucks on Saturday night to an 11th straight victory over the Toronto Maple Leafs.
The Canucks have not lost to the Maple Leafs since Nov. 24, 2003 in Toronto. That decision came two days after the Maple Leafs' last victory in Vancouver.
Vancouver has won nine of the 10 games on this current series win streak in regulation, including a 6-2 triumph at home when the clubs last met on Feb. 18, 2012. Daniel Sedin had a goal and three assists in the win, while Henrik assisted on four tallies.
Tonight's game will mark the first for the Sedin brothers since signing four- year deals on Friday. The duo are in the last season of the five-year deals they inked ahead of the 2009-10 campaign.
The new contracts will keep the 33-year-old Swedish twins in Vancouver through the end of the 2017-18 season.
Henrik Sedin, the Canucks' captain, is the franchise's all-time leader in assists (610) and points (792) and is second in games played with 940. Daniel is second on the list with 773 points.
"Daniel and Henrik are exemplary leaders, teammates and humanitarians and we're very pleased to have them as part of our team for the long-term," Canucks general manager Michael Gillis said in a statement. "Few players in the history of this club have had more significant roles in contributing to the success of this team and to our community and we look forward to many more years with their positive influence leading the way."
Daniel Sedin had his club's lone goal in Wednesday's 2-1 loss to Detroit, one that snapped a four-game winning streak. Henrik had an assist to give him nine helpers and 12 points on a 10-game point streak, while Daniel has four goals and seven points over his own five-game run.
Roberto Luongo made 25 saves in the loss.
"It's frustrating," Vancouver center Ryan Kesler said. "We played a decent game but were sloppy at times and we couldn't come back in the end."
Luongo is 13-6-0 with a pair of ties and a 2.38 goals against average in 22 career games versus Toronto, which is looking for its fourth straight victory.
The Maple Leafs have won the first two of a three-game road trip and lead the Atlantic Division with 20 points. They are coming off a 4-2 win over Calgary on Wednesday, earning the victory despite getting outshot 43-22. It marked the 11th straight game that Toronto gave up more shots than it managed.
However, Jonathan Bernier made 41 saves and four different Toronto skaters had goals. Joffrey Lupul and Mason Raymond lit the lamp and James van Riemsdyk added a short-handed tally.
Paul Ranger also scored shorthanded into an empty net.
"I think you can't look past your goaltender. He's given us a chance no matter who we put in the net. We're able to provide quality goaltending," said Toronto coach Randy Carlyle.
For Raymond, he will play the Canucks for the first time since joining Toronto in the offseason. Raymond was a second-round pick by Vancouver in the 2005 draft and totaled 80 goals, 98 assists and 178 points in 374 games with the club. He had one 20-goal season with the Canucks, but was not re-signed in the offseason.
Raymond joined the Leafs on a tryout before inking a one-year deal before the start of the campaign. He has logged five goals and 11 points in 14 games.
Bernier, owner of eight starts this season, won his only previous outing versus the Canucks as he stopped 27-of-30 shots faced on April 1, 2010 while with the Los Angeles Kings.
Fellow Toronto goaltender James Reimer, who is 4-0-0 with a 1.99 GAA in six starts this season, has also faced the Canucks only once before, giving up four goals on 18 shots in 31 minutes of action the most recent meeting between the clubs.
Toronto forward Carter Ashton will miss the next two games to serve a suspension for a boarding penalty versus the Flames, though Nikolai Kulemin could play for the first time since Oct. 2 because of an ankle injury. He practiced on Friday.
11/02 11:10:43 ET
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