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Ducks are looking to get it together on the road

With five games left in the regular season, the Ducks begin a four-game trip to western Canada. Center Andrew Cogliano hopes the trip helps the team end a three-game losing streak.

April 19, 2013|By Lance Pugmire
  • Andrew Cogliano says he hopes the Ducks upcoming four-game road trip through Canada will energize the Ducks.
Andrew Cogliano says he hopes the Ducks upcoming four-game road trip through… (Jae C. Hong / Associated…)

With only five regular-season games remaining, the Ducks start a four-game swing through western Canada Friday when they first visit Calgary before two games at Edmonton and another at Vancouver.

Ducks center Andrew Cogliano said he hoped a trip to hockey-crazed Canada might jolt the Ducks out of their three-game losing streak.

"We go to Canada, good hockey atmosphere," Cogliano said. "It's a good time to get ready, a good team-bonding trip to play some good hockey and go into the playoffs playing well."

Coach Bruce Boudreau can't think of a better time, noting after Wednesday's loss that fatigue is no longer an excuse, considering the Ducks had three days off before facing a Columbus team playing its fourth game in six days.

"Calgary's playing better, winning three of the last four," Boudreau said. "With the change [to Craig MacTavish as general manager], Edmonton's playing better. We've got teams breathing down our neck. We've had it pretty easy positioning wise. Now it's going down to the wire."

Goaltender Viktor Fasth said, "There's nothing to worry about. We just have to work harder and look forward to the next game."

Cogliano said Boudreau has been shuffling lines to reinvigorate the goal production that once made the Ducks a high-scoring threat.

"Right now we're trying to find our game and be at the top of our game for the playoffs," Cogliano said. "You don't want to go into the playoffs not playing your best hockey, so these games are big for us."

Vanishing defense

The Ducks played Wednesday without defensemen Cam Fowler and Luca Sbisa.

That forced rookie Sami Vatanen, 21, to play more than 18 minutes, and in his fourth game as a Duck he scored his first career goal and hit a post on another shot. Boudreau called Vatanen the best player on the ice Wednesday.

"It's good to get that first one out of the way, of course, but that's a tough loss," Vatanen said. "I just try to do my own thing, my own job. I don't think who's out, just do my best."

The Ducks haven't clarified the status of Fowler (upper-body injury) or Sbisa (lower-body injury) for Calgary, but they did send defenseman Jordan Hendry to minor league Norfolk on Thursday.

Tonight

AT CALGARY

When: 6 PDT.

Where: Scotiabank Saddledome.

On the air: TV: KDOC.

Record vs. Flames: 2-0-0.

Etc.: Calgary has given up more goals per game (3.4) than all but one NHL team.

lance.pugmire@latimes.com

twitter.com/latimespugmire

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