It's been more than a month since Anaheim won a game away from home. Perhaps Teemu Selanne's return to Winnipeg will help give the Ducks even more incentive to end the longest road skid in franchise history.
Making his first trip in almost 16 years back to where his stellar career began, Selanne looks to help the Ducks avoid an 11th straight road defeat Saturday night against the Jets.
Selected with the 10th overall pick in the 1988 draft by the original Jets, Selanne spent more than three seasons in Winnipeg before he was traded to Anaheim during the 1995-96 season. Winnipeg fans will never forget his remarkable 76-goal, 132-point rookie season of 1992-93.
The future Hall of Famer won't forget the support he received from the Jets fans, making Saturday's game a special one in his final NHL season.
"Right when the season came, I looked at the schedule and marked it," the 41-year-old Selanne told NHL.com. "I know it's going to be very special. I really don't know what to expect. That was my first NHL team. Starting there I've always said was a big thing.
"It's a really friendly city. I had a great (3 1/2) years there. I didn't have a chance to say goodbye there. That's why I'm really looking forward to going back."
Selanne is looking forward to an expected warm reception from the Winnipeg fans, but his primary focus will be on trying to help the Ducks (9-17-5) win their first road game since beating Minnesota 3-2 on Oct. 27.
Selanne, who has a team-leading 31 points on the season and two goals and seven assists in his last seven games, scored his 10th goal Friday but Anaheim's road skid reached 10 games with a 4-1 loss at Chicago. Anaheim, 2-8-4 away from home, has 72 total goals on the season -- only Los Angeles and the New York Islanders have scored fewer.
"The net is four-by-six (feet)," said Bruce Boudreau, 2-4-1 since replacing the fired Randy Carlyle as Ducks coach. "I'm assuming they're trying to pick like two-inch circles instead of shooting at the net, going to the net, and getting a rebound."
The Ducks failed on all three power-play chances Friday, and are 6 for 45 with the man advantage on the road in 2011-12.
Anaheim scored three power-play goals but fell 5-4 at home in a shootout Oct. 15, 2010, for its third consecutive loss to the Jets/Atlanta Thrashers franchise. Selanne, however, has five goals and three assists in his last three meetings in the series.
Winnipeg (14-13-4) fell to 10-5-0 at MTS Centre after its five-game home winning streak ended with a 1-0 loss to Washington on Thursday. It was just the second defeat for the Jets in their last 10 home contests.
"It's a bad two points we gave that team," Jets coach Claude Noel said. "We played the way Washington wanted to play. That's the sad part."
The Jets have gone 0 for 10 on the power play while losing two of three, totaling three goals in those contests. They are 6 of 14 with the man advantage during their three-game winning streak over Anaheim.
Winnipeg forward Bryan Little, who had four goals and four assists in the seven games prior to Thursday's loss, has one goal and two assists in three career games against the Ducks.
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