(Sports Network) - The Nashville Predators begin a road-heavy portion of their schedule tonight as they visit the Anaheim Ducks and the Honda Center aiming for a third straight victory. The Predators have won back-to-back 4-1 games since a five-game slide, picking up their latest victory on Sunday over Columbus. The Blue Jackets scored the game's first goal just 37 seconds in, but the Predators responded with four unanswered.
"I don't think that's what we want to do," said Nashville head coach Barry Trotz. "If you ever want to suck the energy out of a building just give up a goal on the first shift. But I thought for the most part, after the first period, I thought we got our act together." Shea Weber had a goal and two assists, Patric Hornqvist scored and set up another goal and Nick Spaling and Sergei Kostitsyn each lit the lamp for the Predators. Pekka Rinne stopped 19 shots in the win, which was Nashville's 15th straight at home over Columbus.
The Predators did lose Cal O'Reilly to a broken right fibula in the game after he fell untouched during the third period. Nashville will play three straight and 10 of its next 12 games on the road, where it is 10-9-1 this season.
The Ducks come into this game having won three straight, including the first two contests of a six-game homestand that comes after a 3-4-0 road trip. Anaheim is 13-6-1 as the host this year following Sunday's 2-1 victory over Chicago. A fourth straight victory tonight would give the Ducks their longest winning streak since a season-best run of six in a row from Nov. 3-12.
Andreas Lilja and Corey Perry scored in Sunday's win, while Jonas Hiller finished with 39 saves. Anaheim was outshot, 19-2, in the third period, but Hiller turned each one away. Hiller did allow a game-tying goal late in the first period before Perry notched the game-winner early in the second. "I made the first save," Hiller said. "Then we were fighting for the puck and it might have even been me who put it in. It wasn't nice to get scored on in the first. I tried not to think about it too much and kept going."
Teemu Selanne was stoned on a penalty shot in the third period for the Ducks, who are four points behind Dallas for first place in the Pacific Division. Playing a second straight game without captain Ryan Getzlaf (nasal/sinus fractures), Jason Blake left Sunday's win with a shoulder injury and is questionable for tonight. The Predators and Ducks have split two meetings this year, with each team winning once on home ice. Anaheim recorded a 5-4 home victory in the last meeting on Nov. 7, giving it a victory in nine of the last 11 played at the Honda Center in this series.
Hiller is 3-4-0 with a 2.44 goals-against average versus the Preds, while Rinne is 4-2-2 with a 2.06 GAA when facing the Ducks.
For more Ducks news and analysis, be sure to read the SB Nation blog Anaheim Calling.