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Ducks look to continue flight up standings

by Dave Lozo
DUCKS (27-20-4) at BLUE JACKETS (23-20-5)

TV -- FS-W (HD), FS-O

Last 10 -- Anaheim 7-3-0; Columbus 3-5-2

Season series -- This is the fourth and final meeting between the teams this season. The Jackets won the first two games, but the Ducks earned a 6-0 victory Jan. 7 at Honda Center.

Big story -- It's the final game before the All-Star break for both teams. After losing five straight, the Jackets are 3-0-2 in their last five. Meanwhile, the Ducks are 9-3-0 in their last 12 and surging up the Western Conference standings.

Team scope:

Ducks --
Saku Koivu's emotional return to Montreal on Saturday nearly turned ugly when the former Habs captain watched the Ducks blow a 3-1 late in the third period. Koivu was in the penalty box when the Canadiens tied it with 13 seconds remaining, but the Ducks emerged with a 4-3 shootout victory.

"There's not really words to describe the feeling that I had out there, and then at the end after the game," said Koivu. "A great night -- it's going to be a memory that's going to go with me through the rest of my life. It's a good feeling right now."

Blue Jackets -- After spotting the St. Louis Blues two goals Saturday, Columbus scored five straight to earn a 5-2 victory. It was the Jackets' first win in their last 11 trips to St. Louis.

"We're starting to play better, to get things going," said Jackets captain Rick Nash. "To come in here and get two points against a team we're going to battle for a playoff spot -- that's huge."

Who's hot -- Anaheim's Bobby Ryan has 7 goals and 3 assists in his last eight games. … Nash has points in seven consecutive games (4 goals, 6 assists).

Injury report -- Anaheim's Ryan Getzlaf (nasal fractures) will be out until after the All-Star break. … Jackets defenseman Rostislav Klesla had to be helped from the ice during Saturday's game, putting his status for Tuesday in question.

Stat pack -- The Ducks' penalty killing was 30-for-31 in 10 games before allowing two goals on six chances to the Canadiens. … The Jackets are facing the NHL's leaders in major penalties for the second game in a row. The Ducks are tied with the Blues with 49 majors.

Puck drop -- "We kind of let them back in the game by taking those penalties. It shouldn't have happened but that's the way it goes. I think the difference right now is we still found a way to win. At the beginning of the year we let the other team come back and we would end up losing." -- Ducks goaltender Jonas Hiller, following Saturday's victory.
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