NHL

Oilers-Ducks Preview

A third straight Pacific Division title for the Anaheim Ducks seems like a foregone conclusion. The franchise's first Presidents' Trophy is far less certain.

The Ducks can secure the division title Wednesday night as they try to complete a season sweep of the visiting Edmonton Oilers.

Anaheim (49-22-7) has an NHL-leading 105 points as it begins a three-game homestand. The Ducks have won seven of nine after capping a 3-2-0 trip with Sunday's 3-2 win over New Jersey.

The club can notch its second straight 50-win season after having none before last season. Anaheim, which needs one point from any of its remaining four games to clinch the division, is two points ahead of the New York Rangers and Nashville in the race for the Presidents' Trophy.

''It's not even a thought in our minds at all,'' said right wing Corey Perry, who has a team-high 32 goals. ''We want to go into the playoffs on the right track, playing playoff hockey. It's not a focus. If it happens, fine, but we're not thinking of it.''

The Ducks (49-22-7) recovered from yielding 12 goals in back-to-back defeats to start the trip by allowing five over the last three games.

"It's all about the little details in the game," defenseman Francois Beauchemin said. "Getting pucks out - off the glass if you need to - and making short passes instead of long cross-ice passes. Those don't really get through anymore as you get closer to the playoffs. Teams are playing too well defensively."

The Ducks have taken three tight matchups with the Oilers this season, winning twice by one goal and once by two after an empty netter.

Edmonton (23-40-13) is brimming with confidence and can match its season-best four-game win streak from Oct. 20-27. The Oilers opened a three-game trip with Monday's 4-1 victory over Colorado behind three assists from Andrew Miller, who has six points in his last three contests.

''We're on a little bit of a streak here and I'm glad I can be a part of it and contribute in any way possible,'' said defenseman Brandon Davidson, who scored his first career goal. ''It's exciting times here in the Oil country.''

Edmonton, which allows a West-high 3.26 goals per game, has surrendered four in the win streak.

"I think we're starting to understand that if we play the game the right way for 60 minutes, that we'll have success," interim coach Todd Nelson said. "Where we get in trouble is if we try to take the easy way out sometimes."

Ryan Nugent-Hopkins and Jordan Eberle each have seven goals and nine assists in the last 11 games. The Oilers were among the highest-scoring teams in the NHL in March with 3.32 goals per game.

Richard Bachman has started in goal in the last two games. He posted his second career shutout in Friday's 4-0 win over Dallas with 29 saves and stopped the same amount of shots Monday.

The Ducks will likely start Frederik Andersen, who has posted a 1.67 goals-against average in winning three career starts against the Oilers.

Edmonton has dropped five straight in Anaheim since a 2-1 win exactly three years ago April 1.

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