NHL

Ducks-Canucks Preview

Consistent road success has helped the Anaheim Ducks continue their surge toward the top of the Pacific Division.

More poor play at home hasn't helped the Vancouver Canucks' push for the playoffs.

The Ducks can conclude a winning trip with a season-high fourth straight road victory that would give the Canucks their first six-game home losing streak in seven seasons Thursday night.

Anaheim's six-game winning streak ended with a 6-2 loss to Pittsburgh on Feb. 8 in the opener of this season-high seven-game trek. The Ducks (29-19-8), though, are 4-0-1 since and moved within three points of division-leading Los Angeles with Tuesday's 5-3 win over Edmonton.

"We've been putting some good wins together," said Frederik Andersen, who made 24 saves to help Anaheim improve to 9-1-3 in the last 13 away from home. "We've been taking good strides toward being a top team in this division."

In the midst of a 17-4-2 stretch, the Ducks have scored 11 goals in their last two games and are averaging 4.1 during a 7-1-1 road run. Anaheim is 5 for 10 on the power play in the last three games, in which it also owns a 6-2 goal advantage in the third period. Half of those goals broke open a 2-2 game against Edmonton.

''I think the last couple of times we've been tied in the second, they've been able to step it up a little bit and get enough for the win,'' Ducks coach Bruce Boudreau said. "When you can do that, that's a real positive sign going forward."

That productive offense has helped Anaheim pile up the points despite its last five opponents going 7 for 22 on the power play. Andersen has a 3.25 goals-against average in his last three starts but that's part of an 8-0-1 starting stretch.

He made 24 saves in each 2-1 shootout loss this season to the Canucks (22-22-12), most recently at Vancouver on New Year's Day. The Ducks sandwiched a 4-0 home win Nov. 30 between those defeats.

Vancouver has totaled seven goals during an 0-4-1 home slide, its second of that length this season. It hasn't lost six consecutive home games since an 0-6-3 skid in 2008-09. That was also the last time it dropped four straight there in regulation.

"At home, there are too many guys trying to push for offense," star Daniel Sedin told the NHL's official website about the Canucks, who have recorded a league-low 58 goals at Rogers Arena.

Outside of playoff position with two teams in front of them, the Canucks followed road wins over Colorado and Arizona with a pair of 5-2 home defeats to Toronto and Minnesota.

"It's tough right now," backup Jacob Markstrom said after making 29 saves against the Wild. "It's frustrating the way things are going right now. We've got to stick together as a team."

Vancouver can perhaps take solace in recording two power-play goals after going 1 for 20 over the previous 11 games. Twice over that stretch it never went on the man advantage.

Henrik Sedin has a goal and three assists in three games since going without a point in five straight. Both Sedins have been blanked in the last six against the Ducks.

Anaheim's Corey Perry has a goal in two straight contests, and six with seven assists in the last 12.

Ex-Canuck Ryan Kesler scored at Vancouver last month.

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