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NHL Preview from The Sports Network



Friday, March 14th (All times Eastern)

Anaheim Ducks (43-16-7) at Colorado Avalanche (43-18-5), 9 p.m.

(SportsNetwork.com) - The struggling Anaheim Ducks desperately need an injection of confidence. A road win over a red-hot Colorado Avalanche team on Friday night could do the trick.

Anaheim's recent problems has dropped the club into a tie for first place in the Pacific Division with San Jose. The Sharks have won four straight and are in action this evening when they visit the New York Islanders.

Although the Ducks hold a game in hand over San Jose, Anaheim is mired in a four-game losing streak and is coming off a 7-2 loss to the Calgary Flames, a team that is well on its way to a fifth straight season out of the playoffs.

The Ducks were picked apart in Calgary, falling behind 5-0 to the Flames en route to the blowout loss. It was the seventh loss in 10 games overall for Anaheim and also snapped the club's three-game road winning streak.

"I really have nothing right now," Anaheim head coach Bruce Boudreau said when asked why his team is struggling of late. "It's easy to say just pick it up and do that, but we better do some soul searching."

Andrew Cogliano and Nick Bonino scored for the Ducks, while goaltender Jonas Hiller was chased after giving up three goals on five shots in the first period. Frederik Andersen replaced him and allowed four goals on 20 shots in relief.

"To a man, it's absolutely embarrassing losing 7-2," said Cogliano. "At the end of the day, our whole team, every man, should be embarrassed."

Anaheim hopes to pick up the pieces Friday when it plays the middle test of a three-game road trip in Denver. The Ducks, who are 19-10-3 away from Orange County this season, will close the swing on Saturday when they visit the rival Los Angeles Kings.

Fittingly, the only other team to beat the Ducks by a five-goal margin this season was the Avalanche, who recorded a 6-1 victory over Anaheim on Oct. 2 in the season opener for both teams.

"We have to be better, simply because (Colorado) already beat us 6-1 (in the season opener)," said Cogliano. "They're playing very good hockey."

That October meeting also was notable for a heated exchange between Boudreau and Colorado head coach Patrick Roy, who shouted at the Ducks coach and nearly pushed over a partition separating the team's benches. Roy was angered at a perceived non-call on Avs rookie Nathan MacKinnon.

Colorado, which has won two straight and four of its last six meetings against the Ducks, enters Friday's rematch having won six of its last seven games.

Roy's club posted its most recent win against the defending Stanley Cup champions, as the Avs downed a visiting Chicago team 3-2 in regulation. The victory moved Colorado one point ahead of the Blackhawks for second place in the Central Division.

The Avs, who enter Friday six points behind the Blues for first place in the division, used a strong performance from goaltender Semyon Varlamov to frustrate the Blackhawks at the Pepsi Center. Varlamov stopped 37 shots to record his 100th career victory and improve to 33-12-5 on the season.

Matt Duchene and Ryan O'Reilly picked up a goal and assist each for the Avalanche. Brad Malone added a tally as Colorado won four of five in the season series against Chicago.

"As a team we expected them to come hard the later it got. There's still a long way to go," said Avalanche captain Gabriel Landeskog of his club's opponent. "Tonight was a huge win, and we certainly sent a message. We're not going to give them anything."

The Avs improved to 2-1-0 on a four-game homestand that ends tonight. Colorado, which is 23-9-3 as the home team this season, has won three of its last four games against Anaheim at the Pepsi Center. The clubs will complete the season series in Orange County on April 13.

03/14 10:55:45 ET

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Scoreboard
Local
Final
UVA 27
UNC 28
Final
NCCU 42
SAVST 14
 
1:00pm Today
CAR
SEA
Final
SFG 11
KAN 4
8:07pm Tonight
SFG
KAN
 
Final
WISC 52
MD 7
Final
SMU 10
MEM 48
Final
ILL 28
MINN 24
Final
RICE 41
UNT 21
Final
NEB 42
RUTG 24
Final
KST 23
TEX 0
Final
ARK 45
UAB 17
Final
UVA 27
UNC 28
Final
EMICH 17
NILL 28
Final
NAVY 41
SJST 31
Final
BST 35
AKR 21
Final
GASTATE 31
GASO 69
Final
TOL 42
UMASS 35
Final
WMICH 42
OHIO 21
Final
COL 37
UCLA 40
Final
UMO 10
KSU 3
Final
WAKE 17
BC 23
Final
BUF 14
CMICH 20
Final
MARS 35
FATL 16
Final
PITT 28
GT 56
Final
SMISS 20
LATU 31
Final
MSU 35
MICH 11
Final
KENT 31
MSST 45
Final
STAN 38
ORST 14
Final
TCU 82
TTU 27
Final
OKST 10
WVU 34
Final
WKENT 66
ODU 51
Final
UTST 34
UNLV 20
Final
MIZZ 24
VANDY 14
Final
UCF 34
TEMPL 14
Final
WASU 37
ARZ 59
Final
CLEM 16
SYR 6
Final
LAMON 18
TXST 22
Final
TXSANANTO 0
UTEP 34
Final
COLST 45
WYO 31
Final
LSU 10
MISS 7
Final
TENN 20
ALA 34
Final
AUB 42
SCAR 35
Final
PSU 24
OSU 31
Final
UTAH 24
USC 21
Final
WASH 10
ARST 24
Final
HAW 18
NEV 26
 
Final
SJS 1
BUF 2
Final
TOR 1
BOS 4
Final
NYI 7
DAL 5
Final
PHI 4
DET 2
Final
OTT 2
NJD 3
Final
MON 3
NYR 1
Final
STL 3
CHI 2
Final
NAS 0
PIT 3
Final
MIN 7
TAM 2
Final
ARI 2
FLA 1
Final
CAL 1
WAS 3
3:00pm Today
WIN
COL
 
4:00pm Today
LOS
CLB
 
7:00pm Tonight
CHI
OTT
 
8:00pm Tonight
ANA
SJS
 
9:30pm Tonight
VAN
WAS
 
9:30am Today
ATL
DET
1:00pm Today
CIN
BAL
1:00pm Today
NYJ
BUF
1:00pm Today
NEP
CHI
1:00pm Today
TEN
HOU
1:00pm Today
JAC
MIA
1:00pm Today
TAM
MIN
1:00pm Today
CAR
SEA
1:00pm Today
KAN
STL
4:05pm Today
ARI
PHI
4:25pm Today
PIT
IND
4:25pm Today
CLE
OAK
8:30pm Tonight
NOS
GBP
Final
NCCU 42
SAVST 14