Los Angeles, which has battled injuries to key players all season, has not been at .500 since Jnauary 7, when it fell to 17-17-4-3 following a loss at Dallas.
The Kings improved to 2-2-0 on their current five-game road trip with a 5-3 win over the Pittsburgh Penguins on Tuesday.
Ziggy Palffy and former Penguin Bryan Smolinski each scored twice and rookie Cristobal Huet got his first NHL win after replacing Jamie Storr, who allowed two goals on eight shots. Huet made 16 saves as the Kings moved within five points of the Edmonton Oilers for eighth place in the Western Conference.
“We are battling for every point we can get right now,” coach Andy Murray said. “There isn’t anything else other than big wins for us right now. We felt that Jamie wasn’t sharp on the first goals. Cristobal got his first NHL win tonight. Jamie will get the job done for us in Columbus.”
No. 1 goalie Felix Potvin remains out with a sprained right knee and center Jason Allison (hip flexor) and right wing Adam Deadmarsh (concussion) also are sidelined.
Columbus returns to Nationwide Arena after a winless five-game road trip and has been outscored, 32-5, in losing its last six contests.
On Tuesday, the Blue Jackets managed just 19 shots on goal in a 5-0 loss to the Nashville Predators. Defenseman Darren Van Impe missed his second straight game after taking a shot off his right ankle in a 6-0 loss San Jose on Friday and left wing Jody Shelley completed his two-game suspension stemming from a fight in the same game.
The Blue Jackets have outscored the Kings, 9-3, in winning both meetings this season, but Los Angeles leads the all-time series, 6-4-0.