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Lifelong friends coming full circle

Lifelong friends Joe Nieuwendyk and Gary Roberts are happy to have one last chance at shared glory in Toronto.

Updated: December 24, 2003, 12:09 PM ET
By Scott Burnside | Special to ESPN.com

TORONTO -- If you're really going to start at the beginning with Joe Nieuwendyk and Gary Roberts, you have to go back to the Owls and the Wrens.

Those were the names of the tyke teams on which the two Whitby, Ontario natives played when they first crossed paths at the age of six in the local rink, the one with the chicken wire on the end boards and the uncomfortable seats.

Roberts was a Wren and Nieuwendyk an Owl. The rest, as they say, is history.

Their paths have ...

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