The defending Stanley Cup champion Anaheim Ducks are struggling to get into a groove on the road this season. Their problems in Calgary, meanwhile, run much deeper.
Having been plagued by poor road play all season, the Ducks look to end a six-game skid at the Pengrowth Saddledome when they face the Flames on Thursday night.
At 3-7-1, Anaheim has one of the worst road records in the Western Conference. The Ducks went 22-14-5 away from the Honda Center in 2006-07.
Anaheim has lost two straight on the road, including a 4-0 loss to Vancouver on Tuesday night in a rematch of their West semifinal.
Now the Ducks are headed to Calgary, where they haven't won since a 3-2 win on Feb. 4, 2003. The Flames and their crowd will also will likely have an extra edge with captain Jarome Iginla set to become the franchise's all-time leader in games played with 804.
Anaheim has scored two goals or less in each of its last five games at the Saddledome, getting blanked twice in that span, and is 9-19-0 with one tie in Calgary since entering the league in 1993-94.
The Ducks, who haven't scored more than two goals in Calgary since a 6-4 loss on Feb. 1, 2004, will be trying to bounce back after being shut out for the fifth time this season.
Ryan Getzlaf had a career-high, eight-game scoring streak - in which he had six goals and six assists - ended Tuesday. He is tied with Chris Pronger for the team lead with 15 assists and also has a team-high 25 points, but just one assist in four career games in Calgary.
Calgary, coming off a 1-2-0 road trip, has its own injury problems. Defenseman Adrian Aucoin has a sore shoulder, and a decision won't be made on his status until Thursday's morning skate.
Flames defenseman Rhett Warrener has missed two straight games with an ankle injury, and forward Marcus Nilson has missed five straight with a head injury. It's unknown when they may return.
Calgary goaltender Miikka Kiprusoff, however, seems fine after taking a puck off the head in a 5-3 loss to Detroit on Tuesday night. Flames coach Mike Keenan said Kiprusoff should be in net Thursday to try and continue his dominance versus Anaheim.
Kiprusoff is 7-3-0 with a 1.65 goals-against average in 10 games against the Ducks, but was not happy with his play Tuesday.
"I think it is lots of little things I am trying to work with (Flames goaltender coach) David Marcoux in practice and I think it will get better," Kiprusoff said. "I think I can play better. Every time is a good time to make a save."
Iginla, meanwhile, has had an outstanding season so far, leading the team with 13 goals and 33 points. He assisted on all three Flames goals Tuesday, and has 16 goals and 25 points in his last 25 games against the Ducks.
Anaheim and Calgary (10-12-3) split four games in last season's series.
|AnaheimDucks.com is the official Web site of the Anaheim Ducks. Anaheim Ducks and AnaheimDucks.com 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.|