Koivu playing like he's 27, not 37

The Sports Xchange

--C Saku Koivu has given the Ducks a big boost upon his return from a groin injury that sidelined him for eight games. The 37-year-old center had four goals and five assists over a five-game stretch, including his second career hat trick on Tuesday against Dallas. "He's done great," Ducks coach Bruce Boudreau said. "He's a real smart player. He's getting younger. You look at our team right now and the goal differential and he's plus-(9)." Koivu didn't score against Calgary but won 11 of 14 faceoffs, including three in a row in a key penalty kill at the end of regulation that helped the Ducks gain a point by going to overtime.

--The Ducks reassigned goalie Iiro Tarkki back to Syracuse of the American Hockey League after Jonas Hiller was able to start their game against Calgary. Tarkki made his NHL debut Sunday when he relieved Hiller late in the first period and got the victory in the 7-4 win over Columbus, stopping seven of the 10 shots he faced. Hiller left that game early because of a lower-body injury. Jeff Deslauriers, who has much more experience and won his start Tuesday against Dallas, will remain with the Ducks as their new backup.

--Hiller wouldn't bite when asked about the source of his unspecific lower-body injury, but it was improved enough for him to return to the net after missing only one start. It seems that rest, treatment and anti-inflammation medicine did the trick after Hiller revealed that he's been playing in some pain for an extended time. An MRI exam that checked out fine also eased his mind along with practice sessions the last two days. "We already talked about it yesterday," Hiller said. "(Bruce) asked me how it went on the ice and I was kind of surprised myself how good it went yesterday. I haven't had any pain. I told him I wanted to wait until this morning just to make sure the on-ice workout didn't bring something back."

"It's a game of inches. It could have gone either way. We didn't win it. We got a point, but at this stage of the game, I think we need two." -- Ducks coach Bruce Boudreau on his team's 1-0 overtime loss to Calgary

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