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Morning Report: Final Push Before Olympic Break

Monday, 02.03.2014 / 3:37 PM / News
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Morning Report: Final Push Before Olympic Break
The goal of winning the week begins tonight as Anaheim hosts the Columbus Blue Jackets at Honda Center (7 p.m. PT, KDOC, AM 830). With only three games remaining before the Olympic break, and two of those at Honda Center, the Ducks will need to regain their home dominance after going 2-3-0 in their past five games on home ice.
By Kyle Shohara

The goal of winning the week begins tonight as Anaheim hosts the Columbus Blue Jackets at Honda Center (7 p.m. PT, KDOC, AM 830).

With only three games remaining before the Olympic break, and two of those at Honda Center, the Ducks will need to regain their home dominance after going 2-3-0 in their past five games on home ice.

Despite their recent struggles, Teemu Selanne says it’s good to have a little adversity.

“A lot of times, the team heals together when you go through tough times as a group,” he said. “You have to turn things around together. We have to remind each other that there’s still a level to reach, and we have to keep pushing each other. That’s the only way to get better.”

Adds Selanne, “We all know the season will be up and down, and lately we haven’t been as consistent as before. But as a group, we want to make sure we’re heading up again. We need everybody to get going.”

The Ducks will need all hands on deck tonight as they face one of the hottest teams in the league. Columbus is 7-3-0 in its past 10 games, 11-4-0 in 15, and had a franchise-best eight-game winning streak from Jan. 6 to 23. The Blue Jackets are right in the thick of things in the Eastern Conference, currently sitting in seventh place (tied with eighth place Detroit) with 60 points.

Columbus sports a 16-11-2 record on home ice, but is only average on the road (12-12-2). Nevertheless, head coach Bruce Boudreau knows how dangerous the Jackets can be.

“We have to work,” he said. “If we don’t work against Columbus, we’re in trouble. They’ve got a work ethic team that’s feeling it, and they have great goaltending.

“They’re very similar to Dallas. I thought Dallas played a very complete game, and Columbus plays a very complete game. I think our last five or six games against them have all been one-goal games or overtime games. It comes down to scoring a power-play goal or shorthanded goal. We’re in for a dog fight tonight.”

Ducks forward Nick Bonino will not play tonight but there’s a chance he plays on Saturday in Nashville if things go according to plan.

“A lot depends on Nick and getting through practice on Thursday and Friday,” said Boudreau. “If he gets through practice Thursday and Friday, there’s a good possibility that he’ll play in Nashville.”

Bonino was the third-leading scorer on the team at the time of his injury (16g/24a).

Being “cute” in hockey is never a good thing, and forward Jakob Silfverberg says the Ducks have been guilty of looking for perfection instead of simplicity.

“We have to get back to working hard and making simple plays,” he said. “The past couple games, we’ve been trying to play too pretty and too cute. We need to get back to working hard and skating.”

Andrew Cogliano says the Ducks are in for a long night if they deviate from their game plan.

“If we forecheck hard, move pucks quickly, and get into the offensive zone, we’ll have success,” he said. “If not, it’ll be a tough game. Tonight’s a game where we need to respond after being shut out.”

Earlier today the Ducks announced they had recalled defenseman Sami Vatanen from Norfolk of the American Hockey League. Vatanen was recalled because of an injury to Mark Fistric (lower body) during the first period of Saturday’s game against the Dallas Stars. Fistric has since been placed on injured reserve.

It was a short AHL stint for Vatanen, who was reassigned to the Admirals on January 21 upon Luca Sbisa’s return to the lineup.

“The games went pretty well there,” he said. “We won three out of four, so it was fun and I got a lot of playing time. It’s always fun to play like that.

“You try to be better every day and work hard. You do your best and keep doing what you’re doing.”

The 22-year-old has appeared in 39 contests for Anaheim this season, earning 14 points (6g/8a) with a +3 rating and 20 penalty minutes. Vatanen ranks tied for first among team blueliners in goals (6), second in power-play goals (2), third in points (14) and fourth in shots (59).

Anaheim and Columbus conclude a two-game season series tonight at Honda Center. The Ducks earned a 4-3 win over the Blue Jackets in the series opener on Oct. 27 at Nationwide Arena, keyed by Corey Perry's second game-winning goal of the season. Anaheim has earned points in seven straight games vs. Columbus dating to a 7-4 win on Jan. 8, 2012 at Honda Center, going 4-0-3 for 11 of a possible 14 points. All-time, the Ducks have posted a record of 24-17-7 against the Blue Jackets, including a 12-7-5 mark in Orange County. Teemu Selanne leads Ducks skaters in career scoring vs. Columbus, earning 42 points (21g/21a) in 40 games.




1 z - ANA 82 54 20 8 266 209 116
2 y - COL 82 52 22 8 250 220 112
3 x - STL 82 52 23 7 248 191 111
4 x - SJS 82 51 22 9 249 200 111
5 x - CHI 82 46 21 15 267 220 107
6 x - LAK 82 46 28 8 206 174 100
7 x - MIN 82 43 27 12 207 206 98
8 x - DAL 82 40 31 11 235 228 91
9 PHX 82 37 30 15 216 231 89
10 NSH 82 38 32 12 216 242 88
11 WPG 82 37 35 10 227 237 84
12 VAN 82 36 35 11 196 223 83
13 CGY 82 35 40 7 209 241 77
14 EDM 82 29 44 9 203 270 67


R. Getzlaf 77 31 56 28 87
C. Perry 81 43 39 32 82
N. Bonino 77 22 27 14 49
M. Perreault 69 18 25 13 43
A. Cogliano 82 21 21 13 42
C. Fowler 70 6 30 15 36
K. Palmieri 71 14 17 9 31
D. Winnik 76 6 24 6 30
H. Lindholm 78 6 24 29 30
S. Koivu 65 11 18 3 29
F. Andersen 20 5 0 .923 2.29
J. Hiller 29 13 7 .911 2.48 is the official Web site of the Anaheim Ducks. Anaheim Ducks and are trademarks of Anaheim Ducks Hockey Club, LLC. NHL, the NHL Shield, the word mark and image of the Stanley Cup and NHL Conference logos are registered trademarks of the National Hockey League. All NHL logos and marks and NHL team logos and marks as well as all other proprietary materials depicted herein are the property of the NHL and the respective NHL teams and may not be reproduced without the prior written consent of NHL Enterprises, L.P. Copyright © 1999-2013 Anaheim Ducks Hockey Club, LLC and the National Hockey League. All Rights Reserved.

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