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Ducks Launch Homestand vs. Predators

Wednesday, 08.06.2014 / 1:49 AM

Associated Press

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Ducks Launch Homestand vs. Predators
Nashville Predators vs. Anaheim Ducks

No team has played fewer home games than the Anaheim Ducks' four at the Honda Center.

They are eager to begin a comfortable stretch in Southern California.

The Ducks seek to end their five-game losing streak Wednesday night when they host the Nashville Predators for the first time since last season's playoffs.

Anaheim (5-6-3) is trying to avoid its first six-game skid since Nov. 14-26, 2010. The Ducks went 0-3-2 to close a seven-game trip capped by Saturday's 5-0 loss to Detroit that coach Randy Carlyle called his club's "worst game of the year."

"Trips like that are an absolute nightmare," left wing Bobby Ryan told the Ducks' official website. "We were just starting to recover and get back to normal from Europe and you have to go do that. It makes it tough to be successful."

Anaheim now gets to play 11 of its next 13 at home, with one of the road games merely a short drive to Los Angeles.

"We are going to focus on our start," said Carlyle, whose club has allowed the first goal in four of the games on its current skid. "That is an area where we haven't done a very good job. If you look at any team in the league, the team's scoring the first goal are winning (a majority) of the games. We have to get off to a decent start feel comfortable in our building."

The losing streak began with a 3-0 defeat at Nashville (7-5-2) on Oct. 29 - the teams' first matchup since the Predators eliminated Anaheim in six games last spring to win a postseason series for the first time in their history.

Including playoffs, Nashville has won nine of the last 12 meetings with Anaheim.

"We are focused on (Wednesday)," Ducks defenseman Lubomir Visnovsky said. "Nashville plays very good and is a hard-working team. We want to go out and play our style, especially in a home game."

Pekka Rinne made 20 saves for the shutout in last month's matchup. He had started every game this season for Nashville until Tuesday, when Anders Lindback made 26 saves in a 4-3 defeat at Los Angeles.

Rinne has won five straight regular-season starts against the Ducks, posting a 1.27 goals-against average and two shutouts. Signed to a seven-year, $49 million contract last Thursday, the Vezina Trophy finalist had a 2.67 GAA in three starts at Anaheim last postseason, winning two of them.

Patric Hornqvist extended his career-best goal-scoring streak to six games Tuesday, tying a franchise record shared by J.P. Dumont and Alexander Radulov. He has seven goals and one assist in that span after he failed to register a point in his first seven games of 2011-12.

The Predators remained without Sergei Kostitsyn, out with a lower-body injury. Top scorer David Legwand, off to the best start of his 12-year NHL career with 14 points in his first 14 games, sat out the final two periods with an upper-body injury. His status is uncertain for this contest.

"He's huge," Trotz said of Legwand. "He's our guy right now. He's getting it done day in and day out...

"But we have a lot of guys here who can step up. If one guy goes down, everyone knows what they're doing and how to react to it."

Jonas Hiller has started 12 of Anaheim's 14 games. He missed the playoff series against the Predators with vertigo-like symptoms, but is 3-6-0 with a 2.74 GAA in 10 career starts against them.

2011-2012 season series
DateScoreW. Goal
Mar 18 '12 NSH 3 at ANA 1 M. Fisher
Dec 10 '11 ANA 2 at NSH 3 J. Tootoo
Nov 09 '11 NSH 4 at ANA 2 M. Erat
Oct 29 '11 ANA 0 at NSH 3 P. Hornqvist
C. Smith157714+01230
D. Legwand145914+5411
P. Hornqvist147411+41211
C. Wilson15369+6910
R. Suter15358+71220
S. Kostitsyn11358+0600
S. Weber15178+101410
M. Halischuk15426+21401
M. Erat7235-3401
M. Fisher7224-1200
K. Klein13134-5401
J. Blum15123-9401
N. Spaling10123-4601
J. Tootoo15033+01700
J. Hillen13033+2800
N. Bergfors9112-2201
B. Geoffrion15022+01300
F. Bouillon8022-1200
J. Smithson15101-51200
B. McGrattan11011+01400
C. O'Reilly5011-2200
T. Laakso9000-1800
M. Ekholm2000-1000
Z. Stortini1000+0700
R. Thang1000+0000
P. Rinne148-4-2314392.30.929
A. Lindback20-1-05543.03.907
T. Selanne155914-33010
C. Perry155510-22242
R. Getzlaf15448-3921
B. Ryan15527+31000
C. Fowler15066-6200
F. Beauchemin15235-3400
S. Koivu15145-3800
L. Visnovsky15134-9600
T. Lydman13044-7600
L. Sbisa15033-1900
B. McMillan15033-7800
A. Cogliano15112+1900
M. Macenauer15112-21401
D. Smith-Pelly13112-4400
K. Foster3101+0600
N. Guenin2101+1200
A. Gordon15011-7200
S. Brookbank13011+12300
G. Parros11011+22100
M. Beleskey12000-61900
J. Blake3000-1000
P. Holland2000+1000
P. Maroon2000+0200
N. Bonino1000-2000
J. Hiller134-6-3373702.95.900
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