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(Sports Network) - The Columbus Blue Jackets look to continue their improved play during the month of December when Ken Hitchcock's club returns home tonight to take on the division-rival Chicago Blackhawks.

The Jackets are 6-3-1 since Hitchcock replaced Gerard Gallant as head coach last month and had won a season-best five consecutive games prior to Thursday's 5-4 shootout loss at Phoenix. The Coyotes' Mike Comrie scored the only goal during the deciding session.

Rick Nash tallied a goal and two assists for Columbus, which fell one win shy of matching a franchise record for consecutive victories. Anson Carter, Sergei Fedorov and David Vyborny also scored in the losing effort.

Carter is currently riding a six-game point streak, having notched three goals and six assists over that span.

Chicago has also shown improvement after making a coaching change, as the team is 5-1-3 since former legendary player Denis Savard stepped in for Trent Yawney behind the bench.

The Blackhawks had a two-game win streak halted Wednesday against Detroit, as Mikael Samuelsson netted the tiebreaking goal midway through the third period to give the Red Wings a 3-2 triumph.

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