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Canucks 4, Sharks 2

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(Globalpost/GlobalPost)

Canucks 4, Sharks 2: Chris Higgins recorded a goal and an assist in an entertaining first period as Vancouver handed San Jose its first regulation loss at home.

Brad Richardson, Mike Santorelli and Zack Kassian also scored for the Canucks, who are 1-0-1 on their four-game road trip. Alex Burrows and defenseman Kevin Bieksa notched two assists apiece while Roberto Luongo made 22 saves.

Captain Joe Thornton and Mike Brown tallied for the Sharks, whose winless streak reached four games (0-1-3). Antti Niemi allowed four goals on 13 shots before being replaced by Alex Stalock, who stopped all 21 shots he faced as San Jose had its five-game point streak halted.

The Sharks got on the board 77 seconds into the game on a bizarre goal by Thornton. The veteran attempted to wrap the puck around the boards from the left point, but it took a strange carom down low and hit the base of the net before popping into the air.

The puck then bounced off the top of the net and hit Luongo's right shoulder before dropping in for Thornton's second goal of the season.

Vancouver took the lead on goals 4:57 apart by Richardson and Santorelli. Richardson beat Niemi from the doorstep at 4:28 and Santorelli buried a rebound in front after Higgins' shot from the bottom of the left faceoff circle was denied.

Brown knotted the contest 1:20 later, but the Canucks went ahead for good with 1:05 remaining in the wild first period as Higgins grabbed a loose puck after Sharks defensemen Jason Demers and Scott Hannan sandwiched Burrows in the slot and fired it under the crossbar. Kassian added insurance at 5:22 of the second, when Bieksa's blast from the right point deflected off his leg and past Niemi.

GAME NOTEBOOK: Canucks captain Henrik Sedin failed to get on the scoresheet, ending his career-best point streak at 12 games. ... Brown's goal was his first in 36 games. He last scored on March 10 at Chicago while with Edmonton. ... The Pacific Division rivals conclude their four-game season series in Vancouver next Thursday.

http://www.globalpost.com/dispatch/news/thomson-reuters/131108/canucks-4-sharks-2