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NHL Preview from The Sports Network

Monday, February 23rd (All times eastern)

Columbus Blue Jackets (17-32-8-4) at San Jose Sharks (29-16-11-5), 10:30 p.m.

(Sports Network) - The San Jose Sharks return home for the first time in over two weeks tonight, as they welcome the Columbus Blue Jackets to HP Pavilion.

The Sharks went 3-3 for on their six-game road trip and still lead the Pacific Division with 74 points. San Jose is also six points behind Detroit and Colorado for the top spot in the Western Conference.

San Jose ended its swing in Chicago on Thursday evening with a 6-3 victory over the Blackhawks.

Marco Sturm had a goal and two assists to lead the Sharks, who bounced back from their 7-3 loss to the Predators on Wednesday. Patrick Marleau and Vincent Damphousse added a goal and an assist each for the Sharks.

Marleau's goal early in the opening period ended an 0-for-17 power-play drought for his club. Marleau and Sturm each extended their point streaks to four games.

The Sharks, who have won four straight meetings at home, are back on the road for Thursday's game against Vancouver.

Columbus, meanwhile, was dealt a loss in Los Angeles on Saturday night. Ian Laperriere had two goals and an assist to lead the Kings to a 4-3 win at the Staples Center.

Rick Nash scored twice for the Blue Jackets and Marc Denis was victimized for four goals on 42 shots for Columbus, which extended its road winless skid to 10 games (0-7-3). The Blue Jackets have also lost three straight overall.

Nash tallied his first goal in nine games in the third period, when he picked up a loose puck to the right of the goaltender and slipped the disc through goalie Crisobal Huet to make it 4-2. With their goaltender pulled, Nash added his second of the game when he made a nifty little move after corralling a rebound to tie Atlanta's Ilya Kovalchuk for the NHL lead with his 33rd goal of the season.

The Blue Jackets close out a four-game road trip tonight before opening a home-and-home series against Chicago on Wednesday.

San Jose has won two of three against the Blue Jackets this season and has taken 10 of its last 13 against Columbus. The Blue Jackets are 1-6 all- time in San Jose.

02/23 10:40:12 ET

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