|ANA||0||0||0||(0 - 0)||0|
|CHI||0||0||0||(0 - 0)||3|
Jean-Sebastien Giguere has the Anaheim Ducks in position to match a franchise record.
On Wednesday night, he'll try to help them win seven straight games for the first time in nine years as the defending Stanley Cup champions look to continue their dominance over the Chicago Blackhawks.
Giguere has won his last five starts and posted a 1.38 goals-against average during the Ducks' (38-23-7) season high-tying six-game run. In his last 11 starts, Giguere is 9-1-1 with a 1.26 GAA and two shutouts.
He is expected to be in goal as Anaheim looks to match its franchise-record seven-game winning streak, set from Feb. 20-March 7, 1999.
The Ducks won six in a row from Jan. 7-18, but followed it up with a six-game skid leading into their current 11-1-0 stretch. That has moved them into second place in the Pacific Division, four points behind first-place Dallas.
"We're really coming together as a team," Giguere said. "Everything is working well right now. There's a long way to go before the playoffs, but we're going the right way."
Giguere helped Anaheim continue its surge on Monday, making 24 saves in a 3-1 win over Ottawa in a rematch of last season's Stanley Cup finals.
"He made some huge saves again tonight," said Ducks defenseman Scott Niedermayer, who had a power-play goal and assist for the second straight game. "He's making big saves. You need that in this league, and he's giving us that right now."
Giguere, who has reached 30 wins for the third straight season, is 9-1-0 with a 2.31 GAA in his last 10 starts against the Blackhawks (32-28-6). Four of his last five victories against them have come at the United Center, including a 39-save performance in a 5-3 win there on Dec. 7.
Overall, Anaheim is 12-0-1 in its last 13 meetings with Chicago, including wins in all three matchups this season. The Ducks also have won six straight in Chicago since Nov. 2, 2003.
Ryan Getzlaf, the Ducks' leader with 71 points, had a goal and two assists in a 6-3 home win over the Blackhawks on Feb. 24. The center has two goals and eight assists in the last five meetings.
Chicago is looking to win its third consecutive game after beating Minnesota 4-2 on Tuesday following a 4-1 victory over Vancouver two nights earlier. With 70 points, the Blackhawks are tied with Columbus for 11th place in the Western Conference, but only six points in back of Colorado and Nashville, which are tied for seventh.
"Every game is big for us now," Blackhawks goaltender Patrick Lalime said. "This time of year, we're very fortunate that we've put together a little streak here."
Lalime is playing a key role with starting goaltender Nikolai Khabibulin bothered by back spasms. The injury has forced Lalime into the lineup for the last six games, but he has been impressive in winning the last two. He allowed three goals on 40 shots in the two victories - including a 28-save performance against the Wild - after going 2-2-0 with a 4.57 GAA in the previous four contests.
"As I said to you guys a month ago, he's saved our season," Blackhawks coach Denis Savard said.
Lalime, though, was pulled in the third period last month in Anaheim after giving up five goals on 25 shots.
Jonathan Toews had three assists in that game, but has been limited to one assist in four games since. He played against the Wild with a face shield after needing 50 stitches under his nose and mouth when he was elbowed by the Canucks' Matt Pettinger on Sunday.
|Mar 05 '08||ANA 0 at CHI 3||D. Byfuglien|
|Feb 24 '08||CHI 3 at ANA 6||K. Huskins|
|Jan 04 '08||CHI 1 at ANA 2||C. Kunitz|
|Dec 07 '07||ANA 5 at CHI 3||R. Getzlaf|