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Ducks eye ninth straight win, share of first, against Canadiens

McGinn to play first game with Anaheim since trade from Buffalo

by Abbey Mastracco / Correspondent

CANADIENS (30-28-5) at DUCKS (34-19-8)

TV: 10 p.m. ET; FS-W, RDS, SNE, NHL.TV

ANAHEIM -- The Anaheim Ducks will attempt to win their ninth straight game when they face the Montreal Canadiens at Honda Center on Wednesday.

A victory will tie Anaheim with the Los Angeles Kings for first place in the Pacific Division.

Forward Jamie McGinn, acquired from the Buffalo Sabres prior to the 2016 NHL Trade Deadline on Monday, will be in the lineup. Although McGinn hasn't had much time to acclimate to Anaheim's system, he believes his style of play will fit right in. 

"This was probably on the top of my list," McGinn said. "I had heard a few rumors earlier in the day about some other teams that I wasn't very thrilled about, but then when I heard Anaheim was involved I was excited. I was just hoping that it happened and for it to come true. … It's a great team with a big, heavy squad and that's the way I want to play. I enjoy winning hockey games and this is probably the hottest team in the League right now so I'm looking forward to it."

Ducks coach Bruce Boudreau said McGinn, who has 14 goals and 13 assists in 63 games this season, will play on the second line with Rickard Rakell and Corey Perry.  

Forward Brandon Pirri, acquired from the Florida Panthers on Monday, is still recovering from an ankle injury but spent time with the Ducks on Wednesday. He's ahead of schedule with his rehab and expects to play a big role once healthy.

"For me, it's having a shoot-first mentality and being reliable for a 200-foot game," Pirri said. "Sticking to my game and what's gotten me successful in this League." 

The Canadiens will work in two new players, defenseman Morgan Ellis and forward Stefan Matteau.  

For Ellis, it will be his first NHL game after a long journey. A product of the Quebec Major Junior Hockey League, he played less than three seasons in the American Hockey League before finding a spot in the ECHL with the Wheeling Nailers. 

Ellis, recalled from from St. John's of the AHL on Feb. 26, will play on the third pairing with Victor Bartley.  

"I've got to make the most of it because you never know when the next one is going to be," Ellis said. "One shift at a time. I just want to be simple out there. Be simple, move pucks and be hard to play against."

Matteau was acquired from the New Jersey Devils prior to the deadline Monday. He skated on the fourth line with Jacob De La Rose and Sven Andrighetto at the morning skate. 

"This is a great opportunity for them," Canadiens coach Michel Therrien said. "We're looking forward to them making their debut with the Montreal Canadiens."

Here are the projected lineups:


Max Pacioretty - Tomas Plekanec - Brendan Gallagher

Paul Byron - Phillip Danault - Torrey Mitchell

Alex Galchenyuk - Michael McCarron - Lars Eller

Stefan Matteau - Jacob De La Rose - Sven Andrighetto

Andrei Markov - P.K. Subban  

Alexei Emelin - Greg Pateryn

Morgan Ellis - Mark Barberio

Mike Condon

Ben Scrivens

Injured: Carey Price (leg), Daniel Carr (lower-body), Jeff Petry (sports hernia), Brian Flynn (lower-body), David Desharnais (broken foot), Tom Gilbert (knee), Nathan Beaulieu (lower-body) 

Scratched: Mike Brown, Lucas Lessio, Victor Bartley


David Perron - Ryan Getzlaf - Mike Santorelli

Jamie McGinn - Rickard Rakell - Corey Perry

Andrew Cogliano - Ryan Kesler - Jakob Silfverberg

Nick Ritchie - Nate Thompson - Ryan Garbutt

Cam Fowler - Kevin Bieksa

Hampus Lindholm - Josh Manson

Clayton Stoner - Sami Vatanen

John Gibson  

Frederik Andersen

Injured: Chris Stewart (jaw), Brandon Pirri (ankle), Simon Despres (illness)

Scratched: Korbinian Holzer  

Status report: Despres was sent home from practice Tuesday with an illness and was told not to come to the rink on Wednesday. … Stoner returns from a hip flexor injury and will play his first game since Jan. 15 against the Dallas Stars. … Pirri will stay behind when the Ducks travel to the Arizona Coyotes on Thursday. "It will be the first time [skating] in a couple weeks so just getting on the ice will feel good," Pirri said. "It will be a feeling out process from there." … Therrien said Condon will start Wednesday and Scrivens will go Thursday at Los Angeles. Scrivens played 19 games for the Kings in 2013-2014. 

Who's hot: Getzlaf, who was named the NHL's First Star for the month of February on Tuesday, is riding an 11-game point streak, the longest active streak in the NHL. … Perry had four points in the Ducks' 4-2 win against the Kings on Feb. 28. … Rakell has five points in his past seven games. … The Canadiens have gone five games without allowing a power-play goal. … Gallagher and Plekanec each have three points over the past four games. … Galchenyuk has three goals in his past three games. 

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