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Blue Jackets at Kings preview

Columbus trying to extend road point streak to eight; Iafallo has points in seven straight for Los Angeles

by Dan Greenspan / Independent Correspondent

BLUE JACKETS (19-15-8) at KINGS (17-22-4)

10:30 p.m. ET; ESPN+, FS-W, FS-O, NHL.TV

The Game

The Columbus Blue Jackets will try to extend their road point streak to eight games when they play the Los Angeles Kings at Staples Center on Monday.

The Blue Jackets are 4-0-3 in their past seven road games. A 3-2 loss against the San Jose Sharks on Saturday ended Columbus' 12-game point streak (8-0-4), which was tied for the third-longest in Blue Jackets history.

The Kings, who lost 4-1 against the Nashville Predators on Saturday, are 2-4-1 in their past seven.

Players to watch

Blue Jackets defenseman Zach Werenski has five goals in his past three games.

Kings forward Alex Iafallo has seven points (three goals, four assists) during a six-game point streak.

They said it

"We're fortunate we've strung together those wins and that helps that belief even more. A true test now is we lost a game. … Now, can you come back with your confidence and your swagger and play the way you're supposed to play? These are the things we're going to find out." -- Blue Jackets coach John Tortorella

"There's not many nights where you go, 'Where the hell is Alex tonight?' He's been pretty steady. If you asked me to pick one of the most consistent players, he would be in that pile full of guys, night in and night out." -- Kings coach Todd McLellan on Alex Iafallo

Blue Jackets projected lineup

Gustav Nyquist -- Pierre-Luc Dubois -- Emil Bemstrom

Nathan Gerbe -- Boone Jenner -- Nick Foligno

Sonny Milano -- Alexander Wennberg -- Kevin Stenlund

Jakob Lilja -- Riley Nash -- Eric Robinson

Zach Werenski -- Seth Jones

Vladislav Gavrikov -- David Savard

Scott Harrington -- Markus Nutivaara

Elvis Merzlikins

Matiss Kivlenieks

Scratched: Ryan MacInnis, Gabriel Carlsson

Injured: Joonas Korpisalo (knee), Andrew Peeke (finger), Ryan Murray (lower body), Oliver Bjorkstrand (rib/oblique), Cam Atkinson (ankle), Josh Anderson (shoulder), Alexandre Texier (back), Dean Kukan (knee), Brandon Dubinsky (wrist)

Kings projected lineup

Alex Iafallo -- Anze Kopitar -- Tyler Toffoli

Adrian Kempe -- Blake Lizotte -- Austin Wagner

Dustin Brown -- Jeff Carter -- Nikolai Prokhorkin

Kyle Clifford -- Michael Amadio -- Trevor Lewis

Sean Walker -- Drew Doughty

Alec Martinez -- Ben Hutton

Derek Forbort -- Matt Roy

Jonathan Quick

Jack Campbell

Scratched: Kale Clague, Matt Luff

Injured: Joakim Ryan (lower body)

Suspended: Kurtis MacDermid

Status report

Nutivaara is expected to play after missing 27 games because of an upper-body injury. He was activated from injured reserve Sunday. … Atkinson will be a game-time decision. He sustained a high-ankle sprain against the Kings on Dec. 19. … Forbort will make his season debut after missing the first 43 games of the season because of a back injury. … Brown will return after missing four games because of pneumonia. … Lewis will play for the first time since sustaining an upper-body injury against the Buffalo Sabres on Dec. 21.

Stat pack

Tortorella will coach his 1,300th NHL game. … Wennberg will play in his 400th NHL game. … Toffoli, who has three points (two goals, one assist) during a three-game point streak, will play in his 500th NHL game.

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