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DUCKS (18-7-3) at SHARKS (17-3-5)
TV: PRIME, CSN-CA
Last 10: Anaheim 4-4-2; San Jose 7-2-1
Season series: The Ducks and Sharks resume their SoCal/NorCal rivalry tonight at SAP Center at San Jose. The first of five season series contests, the two clubs will meet again on Dec. 29 (SJ), Dec. 31 (ANA), Mar. 20 (SJ) and Apr. 9 (ANA). Over the last 12 contests dating to Apr. 6, 2011, Anaheim has gone 8-3-1 against the Sharks. All-time, the Ducks have gone 52-52-9 against the Sharks, including a 27-25-4 mark at SAP Center. Last year’s season series saw Anaheim post a 2-2-1 record vs. San Jose, and captain Ryan Getzlaf led the club in scoring vs. San Jose last season, collecting five points (1g/4a) in five games. Teemu Selanne leads Anaheim in scoring vs. San Jose, collecting 96 points (50g/46a) in 89 career contests.
Big story: The Ducks stretched their home record to 10-0-1, remaining unbeaten in regulation at Honda Center in 2013-14, after their 5-2 victory over the Flames on Black Friday. The Ducks also extended their home winning streak against Calgary to a franchise-record 18 consecutive games having not lost at home to the Flames since Jan. 19, 2004.
But their next four games are against some of the top teams in the league, including San Jose (tonight), Los Angeles, Chicago and St. Louis.
"We both have very strong, skilled teams," said Dustin Penner, on tonight's game. "We bring a lot of speed and great goaltending. It's going to be a good tight game."
Ducks: Saku Koivu returned to the Anaheim lineup Friday in a 5-2 win against the Calgary Flames. His return proved valuable as his line (along with Andrew Cogliano and Daniel Winnik) combined for five points. The veteran forward missed 15 games with a concussion and expects to play again Saturday.
"This was a good game for me to get in," he said. "We didn't have any penalty-killing, which I'm a part of, so it kind of gave me a little bit of a break, and because of the score, we were able to roll all four lines throughout the game. So, I don't think minutes got too much of anybody, and it was a good game to get my feel back.
"It's going to be a tough one [Saturday]," he said. "First of all, having the back-to-back game, going into their building. They are probably one of the toughest teams to play on the road. We've had some good matchups against them in the last couple of years. It should be a fun one, but it's going to be a great, great challenge for our club."
Sharks: With a 6-3 win against St. Louis on Friday, San Jose is 11-0-1 with forward Brent Burns in the lineup.
"Brent's a legit power forward," Tommy Wingels told NHL Network. "He creates space out there for himself and for other guys on the ice, and I think you see the success we have when he is in our lineup. Him scoring three goals [Friday], he's got a heck of a shot, and if he can continue to get that on net and create those scoring chances for his line, we're going to be in good shape."
Burns, who returned from a facial injury Nov. 21, has not played back-to-back games this season.
"Hopefully, the legs are going to keep getting better and better," Burns told the Sharks website. "I felt like I stayed in really good shape, but gym-shape and then game-shape is different."
Who's hot: Penner, with two goals Friday, has nine this season after nine in 98 games the prior two seasons. He has seven points his past five games. Forward Ryan Getzlaf has 14 points (seven goals) during a nine-game point streak. Forward Nick Bonino has a three-game point streak and five in four games. Goalie Frederik Andersen has started his NHL career 7-1-0 with a 1.70 goals-against average and .939 save percentage. … Burns had a hat trick and assist Friday and has six points in four games since returning. Forward Joe Thornton has six points in a four-game streak.
Injury report: Ducks defensemen Sheldon Souray (wrist) and Luca Sbisa (hand), forward Jakob Silfverberg (hand) and goaltender Viktor Fasth (lower body) are on injured reserve. Defensemen Bryan Allen (lower body) and Francois Beauchemin (upper body) are out. ... Sharks forwards Adam Burish (back) and Raffi Torres (knee) are on IR.
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