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Ducks' Fowler returns to lineup against Kings

by Curtis Zupke / NHL.com

KINGS (8-4-3) at DUCKS (10-3-3)

TV: NBCSN, SN1

ANAHEIM – The ailing Anaheim Ducks still don't have right wing Corey Perry or defenseman Francois Beauchemin, but they will get back defenseman Cam Fowler on Wednesday against the Los Angeles Kings at Honda Center.

"He's going to play," Anaheim coach Bruce Boudreau said. "I haven't heard anything different that he's not going to play."

Perry, who led the NHL with 11 goals, and Beauchemin have viral gland infections and Boudreau said he is waiting blood tests on both. Perry's absence is noticeable offensively because is Anaheim has scored five goals in three games and is 0-0-3 without him. Boudreau shuffled his lines and put left wing Emerson Etem on the top line with center Ryan Getzlaf and Devante Smith-Pelly.

"Offensively, some of the combinations haven't been working," Boudreau said. "We haven't been scoring. So sometimes you shuffle the deck. Emerson's been an offensive guy in the past, and let's see if he can't do it playing with arguably the best passer in the League."

Los Angeles is also shorthanded on defense and fighting illness. Kings coach Darryl Sutter told reporters that several players are sick. The Kings signed defenseman Jamie McBain on Tuesday because they do not have salary cap space to recall a defenseman from the American Hockey League. McBain has 275 games of NHL experience with the Carolina Hurricanes and Buffalo Sabres. It will be his first NHL game since April 13.

"There's a lot to go over with him," Sutter said. "It's way different coming to this conference. Pace of play is way different. We'll see."

This is the first game between the teams since the Kings eliminated the Ducks in Game 7 of the Western Conference Second Round series on May 16, which sent Teemu Selanne into retirement.

Neither side was inclined to talk about the rivalry or the past, except for Kings defenseman Drew Doughty.

"We were happy to beat them in the playoffs last year," Doughty said. "I'm sure they weren't too happy that we did. So they're looking for a little bit of revenge and we have to step up to the plate and beat them."

Said Boudreau of Game 7, "I haven't forgotten about it. It wasn't a really good game for us, so I think everyone's aware of it. [But] that's in the past."

Sutter sees similarities in Anaheim's defense to his from years ago.

"I think the kids on the back end are good," Sutter said. "They have a year under their belt. They have three guys that are real top-end defensemen: [Sami] Vatanen, [Hampus] Lindholm and Fowler. It's like the growth of our young defenseman. We talked about it before with Doughty, [Slava] Voynov, [Alec] Martinez and [Jake] Muzzin."

Here are the projected lineups:

KINGS

Marian GaborikAnze KopitarJustin Williams

Tanner PearsonJeff CarterTyler Toffoli

Dwight KingMike RichardsDustin Brown

Kyle CliffordJarret StollTrevor Lewis

Jake MuzzinDrew Doughty

Alec MartinezMatt Greene

Brayden McNabb - Jamie McBain

Jonathan Quick

Martin Jones

Injured: Robyn Regehr (lower body)

Scratched: Andy Andreoff

Suspended: Slava Voynov

DUCKS

Emerson EtemRyan GetzlafDevante Smith-Pelly

Matt BeleskeyRyan KeslerJakob Silfverberg

Rickard RakellWilliam KarlssonAndrew Cogliano

Patrick MaroonNate ThompsonTim Jackman

Cam FowlerClayton Stoner

Hampus LindholmJosh Manson

Bryan Allen - Sami Vatanen

Frederik Andersen

Jason LaBarbera

Injured: Francois Beauchemin (viral gland infection), Corey Perry (viral gland infection), John Gibson (groin), Ben Lovejoy (finger), Mark Fistric (back), Kyle Palmieri (ankle)

Scratched: Dany Heatley, Mat Clark

Status report: Maroon skated on the fourth line and would give Anaheim some size to go with Jackman. Palmieri has been skating but might need a conditioning assignment before his return, Boudreau said. The Kings reportedly did not have full participation at their morning skate and it was unclear who might be unavailable because of illness.

Who's hot: Martinez comes off a career-high three assist game. Kopitar and Gaborik come off their first multi-point games of the season. Andersen is 3-0-0 with a 1.62 goals-against average against the Kings. Kesler and Vatanen have three-game point streaks and Beleskey has two goals in this past three games.

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