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Home rut befuddles Canucks

It has been mulled over in the minds of the players and dissected in the media. But no one seems to be able to figure out what happens to the Canucks when they play at home.

Vancouver entered Wednesday night's late game against the Lightning with 59 points, third-most in the league. But it also had lost three in a row.

Two losses were at GM Place, where the Canucks had lost consecutive games for the first time in nearly two years and were 0-5-2 in their previous seven, the team's worst streak at home in four years.

"We play so well on the road and then we come here and nothing," Vancouver goalie Dan Cloutier said. "Maybe we're trying to do too much."

It is not as if the Canucks are bad at home. They began 9-0-1 and still are 14-7-2-2. But for a team believed to be a Stanley Cup contender, center Brendan Morrison said, "It's almost embarrassing."

But not unprecedented.

"It's something every team goes through," Lightning defenseman Jassen Cullimore said. "The way we use that to our advantage is to get on top of them right away and get a lead."

Same for the Canucks, who had not had a regulation win at home since Nov. 8 vs. the Wild.

"We just have to try to be aggressive early," captain Trevor Linden said. "We're used to having a lot of success here. It's just not working anymore."

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