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Ducks Can’t Slow Down The Avs
By Michael Walters
The Anaheim Ducks finished their eight game homestand against the Colorado Avalanche. John Gibson was in net against Jonas Johansson. Troy Terry was out due to personal reasons.
The Ducks got on the board first just over halfway through the first period. Anaheim created a turnover in the Colorado zone and Jakob Silfverberg got to the puck in the slot. He then made a quick pass to Derek Grant at the side of the net and he backhanded the puck under Johansson into the net.
The Avs would answer back a few minutes later. Bowen Byram took a point shot that hit Simon Benoit‘s leg in front of the net and deflected into the goal.
Colorado then scored with just 8 seconds left in the period to take a 2-1 lead. Nathan MacKinnon got the put in the right face-off circle and shot a rocket over Gibson for the score.
The Avs then scored two quick goals early in the second to break the game wide open. Jack Johnson took a point shot through tons of traffic and Gibson couldn’t see it. Less than two minutes later, Valeri Nichushkin scored at the side of the net. MacKinnon found Nichushkin alone for the easy tap in goal.
Towards the end of the second period, Trevor Zegras was checked between Andrew Cogliano and Logan O’Connor. He did not return for the third.
In the third, the Avs got a power play early on and converted to make it 5-1. Gibson stopped the initial shot, but the puck fell out of his glove and rolled to Samuel Girard, who shot it in for the goal.
The Ducks had one power play in the final frame, but could’t convert. Anaheim dropped this one by a 5-1 final.
The Ducks had a solid start to this one getting the first goal as they were able to hang with the defending champs for most of the period. The Avs got a late goal that gave them momentum and then two quicks goals to start the second which was all that they needed. The Ducks have had trouble lately giving up multiple goals to start a period.
With Terry out, the Ducks tried to generate new looks at the net down low on the power play, but they weren’t able to convert in their three attempts. The Avs scored once in their three man advantages. Gibson did all he could being screened throughout the game and also being victim of a bad bounce. He will want the last goal back as he couldn’t quite secure the puck in his glove.
The Ducks are coming up on the stretch run of the season facing teams in the playoffs or fighting to get into the post season. Anaheim already made the decision to keep Jamie Drysdale out. Maybe it’s time to consider doing the same with Trevor Zegras and others who are playing banged up.
After the game, Head Coach Dallas Eakins said Zegras got injured in the first period. It sounds like the collision in the second period just aggravated the situation more.
The Ducks went 1-6-1 on their 8 game homestand. Anaheim is currently in 29th place or 4th in terms of draft lottery position.
The Ducks travel to Seattle to play the Kraken Thursday at 7 PM.
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March 28th, 2023