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NHL Preview from The Sports Network



Thursday, October 13th (All times eastern)

Vancouver Canucks (1-1-1) at Detroit Red Wings (2-0-0), 8 p.m.

(Sports Network) - A pair of Western Conference powers collide tonight in the Motor City, as the Detroit Red Wins are set to host the Vancouver Canucks from Joe Louis Arena.

The Red Wings have won their first two games of the season and recorded a 3-0 shutout of the Colorado Avalanche Saturday in the Rocky Mountains. Johan Franzen, Henrik Zetterberg and Pavel Datsyuk each lit the lamp and goaltender Ty Conklin stopped all 29 shots that went his way.

"The first period they were faster than us," said Zetterberg. "The second period we got back into it and Ty kept us in it."

Detroit showed no sings of fatigue in the second of back-to-back games and opened the 2011-12 campaign with a 5-3 win versus Ottawa last Friday. Conklin took over for Jimmy Howard and registered his first shutout since February. Howard could get the nod between the pipes tonight.

The Red Wings have won more games (743) than any other team in the NHL since the beginning of the 1997-98 season. They are aiming for their first 3-0-0 start since the 2005-06 campaign.

Vancouver is the defending Western Conference champion and will continue a four-game road trip Thursday night. It is 1-1-1 on the season and dropped a 5-4 decision at Philadelphia last night, as Andrej Meszaros' goal early on in the third period lifted the Flyers to victory.

Daniel and Henrik Sedin along with Mikael Samuelsson each had a goal and an assist for the Canucks, who were coming off a 3-2 win over Columbus on Monday. Canucks netminder Roberto Luongo made just 22 saves in defeat.

"We are our own worst enemy, if we aren't making mistakes or putting ourselves down we feel confident that we can beat anybody," said Vancouver defenseman Kevin Bieksa. "Five on five we are strong, with the man advantage we are strong, it's just mistakes right now."

The Canucks will visit Edmonton on Saturday in the finale of the trek. Daniel Sedin owns five points in his first three games, one more than his twin brother. Vancouver has a record of 18-4-3 in the second of back-to-back games in the last two seasons.

Canucks bench boss Alain Vigneault is 10 wins shy of moving past former Vancouver head coach Marc Crawford (246) on the all-time wins list.

Vancouver has played three straight one-goal games and split its four meetings with Detroit a season ago. The Red Wings, though, have won six of nine and 10 of the previous 16 meetings between the teams. These two clubs have split the past 10 contests at the Joe.

10/13 10:55:47 ET


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