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Miller perfect again in Canucks’ win over Jackets

COLUMBUS, Ohio (AP) — Ryan Miller made 31 saves for his second consecutive shutout, his third of the season and 32nd of his career, and the streaking Vancouver Canucks topped the struggling Columbus Blue Jackets 5-0 on Friday night.

Columbus couldn’t muster anything against Miller, who extended his scoreless run to 152 minutes, 5 seconds. The Canucks are tied for first in the Western Conference with 33 points, propelled by a 6-1-1 run.

Miller is tied for the NHL lead with 15 wins.

Chris Higgins and Brad Richardson both had a goal and an assist for Vancouver, which played the first game of a season-high, seven-game, 12-day road trip.

The Canucks’ balanced, four-line attack started producing late in the second period and then broke out in the third. Henrik Sedin, Shawn Matthias and Alexandre Burrows also scored, and Nick Bonino added three assists.

Columbus has lost five in a row and has dropped to the bottom of the NHL standings with a 2-12-2 slide. Sergei Bobrovsky allowed four goals on 29 shots.

Higgins found space down the left wing, patiently holding the puck before snapping a shot from below the circle, almost to the goal line and inside the near post for his fifth goal at 15:25 of the second.

Just 48 seconds into the third, Radim Vrbata threw the puck back toward to the near post where Sedin was waiting for the easy goal.

The Canucks poured it on from there, adding three more goals in just under six minutes after Miller made a nice glove save on Foligno’s drive from the slot.

Matthias took a bouncing puck, and on a breakaway snapped a shot past Bobrovsky for his fourth at 11:49.

Bobrovsky was pulled for an extra skater with just over five minutes remaining, and Richardson scored right away from inside the blue line for his fourth to make it 4-0.

With Bobrovsky back in the net, Burrows scored from the left circle at 17:26 for his eighth to cap the scoring.

NOTES: Vancouver is 14-1-2 in its last 17 games in Columbus but had lost three of four there. …The Blue Jackets play Saturday at Nashville, which is 9-1-1 at home. … Miller hasn’t allowed a goal since 7:55 of the second period in a 4-1 win over Chicago on Nov. 23, a span of three games. … Columbus dropped to 3-8-1 at home.

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