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Mighty Ducks-Blue Jackets Preview @NHLdotcom
Mighty Ducks-Blue Jackets Preview

GAME: Anaheim Mighty Ducks (16-14-6) at Columbus Blue Jackets (10-25-1).

TIME: Wednesday, 7 p.m. EST.

Sergei Fedorov hasn't exactly had the impact the Columbus Blue Jackets expected when they traded for the star forward on Nov. 15.

Fedorov faces his old team for the first time when the Blue Jackets host the Anaheim Mighty Ducks.

In 18 games with Columbus, Fedorov has one goal and six assists, and he has been held scoreless in six of the past seven games. The Blue Jackets remain the league's lowest-scoring team, averaging 2.1 goals per game, and their power play ranks last in the NHL.

A 10-time 30-goal scorer, Fedorov was dealt along with a fifth-round pick from the Ducks to the Blue Jackets for forward Tyler Wright and rookie defenseman Francois Beauchemin. The 35-year-old Fedorov spent a little more than one season with Anaheim after 13 years in Detroit.

Columbus has won just five of 18 games since acquiring him, though one of those victories came Monday as the Blue Jackets snapped a six-game losing streak by beating Chicago 4-3 in overtime.

Nikolai Zherdev went end-to-end to tie the game with 23 seconds left in regulation and Jaroslav Balastik's slap shot won the game for the Blue Jackets in overtime.

"Going coast to coast is rare for me, but I think it's what I do best," Zherdev said through an interpreter. "I think it was the most important goal of my life right now."

Balastik's goal was his fourth in three games and sixth overall for the 26-year-old rookie.

"I'm playing good right now. I'm playing with confidence," said Balastik, who led the Czech Elite League in scoring the last two years.

The Blue Jackets are 6-1 in overtime and shootout games and 4-25 in games decided in regulation.

Anaheim has been enjoying an extended holiday break. The Ducks haven't played since last Wednesday, when they beat St. Louis 6-3 to improve to 8-3-2 in their last 11 games.

"We're fortunate enough that we're going to have four days of nothing," said goalie Jean-Sebastien Giguere, who notched his 100th career victory. "I think it's important for guys to let go and decompress a little bit, just think about something else and spend some time with our families. We have a bunch of guys going back to their hometowns, so it's good to just take a step back, just relax and enjoy the holidays and come back fresh."

Wright scored his second goal of the season in the win over the Blues. Beauchemin has nine points in 15 games for the Ducks after managing only two points in 11 games with Columbus.

STANDINGS (through Dec. 27): Mighty Ducks - 38 points, 3rd place (tied), 9 PB, Pacific Division. Blue Jackets - 21 points, 4th place, 32 PB, Central Division.

TEAM LEADERS: Mighty Ducks - Teemu Selanne, 18 goals and 30 points; Scott Niedermayer, 21 assists; Todd Fedoruk, 64 PIM. Blue Jackets - Zherdev, 10 goals; David Vyborny, 15 assists and 22 points; Jody Shelley, 73 PIM.

SPECIAL TEAMS (through Dec. 27): Mighty Ducks - Power play: 15.4 percent (34 for 221), 22nd in NHL. Penalty killing: 83.2 percent (198 for 238), 11th. Blue Jackets - Power play: 12.3 percent (26 for 212), 30th. Penalty killing: 82.8 percent (211 for 255), 12th.

GOALTENDERS: Mighty Ducks - Giguere (10-5-6, 0 SO, 2.83 GAA); Ilya Bryzgalov (6-9-0, 2.47). Blue Jackets - Marc Denis (5-14-0, 3.33); Pascal Leclaire (2-8-1, 3.97).

SEASON SERIES: Mighty Ducks, 1-0.

LAST MEETING: Oct. 14; Mighty Ducks, 4-3. At Anaheim, Calif., Joffrey Lupul scored two goals and assisted on Keith Carney's game-winner with 2:36 to play. Fedorov was out of the lineup with a groin injury.

ROAD/HOME RECORDS: Mighty Ducks - 3-8-3 on the road; Blue Jackets - 7-11-0 at home.

Associated Press
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