Ducks' trip continues at Columbus
DUCKS (21-24-9) at BLUE JACKETS (16-33-6)
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: Anaheim 6-2-2; Columbus 3-6-1.
: This is the fourth and final meeting between the clubs. The Blue Jackets have won two of the first three matchups, including a 3-2 overtime victory on Feb. 3 at the Honda Center.
: Columbus is the second stop on Anaheim's eight-game road trip. The opener didn't go as planned, although the Ducks managed to earn a point in a 2-1 shootout loss at Detroit on Friday night. The trip doesn't conclude until next Friday, when Anaheim visits New Jersey. The Ducks enter Sunday's action 11 points behind Phoenix for the final playoff spot in the Western Conference with two games in hand.
"We think we deserved a better fate," Ducks coach Bruce Boudreau said. "But when you go 0-for-7 on the power play, even if you get three-four good looks, you don't expect to win."
: If Anaheim falls further out of the playoff race in the next two weeks, will Teemu Selanne seek a trade to a contender?
Selanne is ready to address that issue. As far as he's concerned, the Ducks are still very much alive in the Western Conference.
"I have tried to avoid that question," Selanne told the Orange County Register. "We still have (hope). Everybody in this room believes that we can make the playoffs and I think that would be almost wrong to even think about any other options. That's not in my mind right now. Let's see what happens.
"But the main focus is right now. Today. This trip is going to pretty much decide which direction we're going to go. Everybody's looking ahead and up. Hopefully we can do it and let's see what happens after that."
: It's certain Columbus will not be a participant in the 2012 Stanley Cup Playoffs, but the Blue Jackets are still playing for pride. That was on full display Saturday night, when R.J. Umberger
scored twice and Steve Mason
made 34 saves to lead Columbus to a 3-1 win against the Minnesota Wild at the Xcel Energy Center.
"It's been hard to get those kinds of bounces this year, but I think you've got to create them. You've got to keep working hard," Umberger said.
: Ducks goalie Jonas Hiller has allowed two or fewer goals in 11 of his last 13 starts. He's 8-2-3 over that span. … Blue Jackets captain Rick Nash
has a goal and 4 assists in his last four games.
: Anaheim will be without Devante Smith-Pelly (foot) and Dan Ellis (groin). … Mark Letestu
(hand), Kristian Huselius
(lower body), Radek Martinek
(concussion), Nikita Nikitin
(knee), Brett Lebda
(thumb), Marc Methot
(jaw) and Jared Boll
(foot) are out for Columbus.
: Ducks winger George Parros had gone 83 straight games without a goal until he found the back of the net Friday night. … Columbus won in regulation at Minnesota on Saturday night for only the fifth time in 22 attempts.
: "I think it's gotten a little easier since Bruce is here. Definitely, practices are a little shorter. I get days off once in a while, which is nice to take care of my body. I get a lot of massages and trying to get good stretches in and everything to feel good." -- Ducks goalie Jonas Hiller on coach Bruce Boudreau