GameDay: Anaheim @ Vancouver

Posted: 04/03/2012 by bc in Uncategorized

Skinny: Toss the stat packs and all the numerical indicators and probability based theories describing how this game is likely to unfold. This is a Ducks/Nucks tilt. Nothing between these teams ever goes by the book of what should be. Think not? Then ‘splain to me how one of the leagues least successful teams has a winning record against one of the leagues most successful teams in head to head competition?
This tilt pits a team on a two game losing against one of the league’s best that is also on a six game winning streak. It’s about a team that believes it’s better than its record against a club preparing for a Stanley Cup run. This last game is set up similarly to their first match of the season. Ducks were on a four game losing streak when they faced Vancouver that had beaten Chicago and L.A. on the road.
This game is made for our Ducks.
Key to the Game: It’s all about hearts and minds. Do our Ducks want this game badly enough to remain focused so as to avoid the mental mistakes that have cost them in the previous 3 losses. By the numbers, a Nucks win should not be doubted. Somehow our Ducks have always found a way to win in these situations.

  1. You can’t argue that our Ducks haven’t been competitive down the stretch. I don’t know why they can lose 1 goal games to the likes of the Oilers and do the same against the Canucks. Both games prove the point that our Ducks simply can’t put it all together though. They dominate the Oilers but can’t score. They score on the Nucks but give up 4 goals in the process.
    Man I look at that roster, see the results and just shake my head.

    BTW, I don’t know about other sites but we’re down to like 50-70 views per day. We were averaging in the low triple digits just one week ago. Roughly, 2/3’s to 3/4’s of our viewers have dropped off. Kind of surprising because the last home game was a reported sellout. For a lot of Ducks fans the season ended Sunday.

  2. czhokej says:

    I think that many people simply lost interest. Many Ducks fans aren’t just hockey enthusiasts, but they are interested in other sports. At least it was an entertaining game yesterday. However, we somehow cannot play the whole 60 minutes tempo game. We do not have shut-down defensive mode, even though our PK was good.

    Brad, have you noticed those nifty moves during the shoot-out. All three Vancouver players showed amazing skills and quickness.

    • Burrows is incredible, ain’t he cz? Close to 50% in Shutouts. In my day 33% on breakaways and penalty shots was good. Perry’s backhanded roofer stands compares favorably to Nucks sick and shifty.

  3. czhokej says:

    Ducks other blog sites show the same – lack of interest of the fans.

  4. bbdux93 says:

    The Sunday game was – for me – unispiring. The game last night had two good periods and then our guys were simply out played. Have they already made a mental decison to quit – in-spite of what the coach is saying?

    • LOL bb. If you try to quit there’s usually an opposing checker who’s all too eager to give you a reason to stick with it..
      Having never played in the NHL I can’t speak from direct experience but I suspect the guys began playing for next year just like we did in minor hockey. What happens in this situation is that there’s a little less team and a little more focus on positioning yourself to continue your career.
      For example, Corey Perry and Bobby Ryan are probably paying attention to their individual goals. This isn’t selfish at all. The team goal of going to the playoffs is already lost. What’s left to play for is the individual goals.
      To personalize this for you think about your study teams as you prepared to qualify for a credential. Once the goal is met or the semester concluded the group moves on. Some teammates or you probably call them colleagues you work with for a few years others move on sooner. A hockey team is no different.
      So I wouldn’t call playing out the string quitting but the motivation and focus is a bit different. Not totally though because you still need your teammate to help you achieve your goals.

  5. bilverado says:

    For the first 2-1/2 months, they looked uninspired and fans were left wondering how we could be losing with the roster that we had. In January and most of February, they lived up to the promise and were maybe the best team in hockey. The last 4-5 weeks it’s begun to feel again like the first half of the season. Do we really have anything more to look forward to than another .500 season? Hard to get excited about mediocrity. We’ve been oversold the potential of this team which, while did play up to their billing for a short stretch, just doesn’t seem to want to gel.

    On paper, we’ve got a bunch of players who look like they should be good. But they haven’t really been a good team for some time now.

    • Well said bilverado. They seemed to lose an edge once they got past the trade deadline. Do you think there’s a sense that a few guys believe they own some divine right to play for OUR Ducks?

  6. tearingitup says:

    I agree with ya bilvers….they do look good on paper, but not so much in a 60 minute NHL game. Most of the season we were in another league……the one between the NHL and the AHL. I also see mediocrity next year especially when the points leader decides to give it up (hope not). Even though the 1st line did well last nite, they have underachieved this season as a unit and I exclude CP’s that comment. Hiller played too many minutes down the stretch and ran out of gas last nite IMHO. I read the comments, but find I am unable to respond to the team’s play.

  7. yougetoutwhatyouputin says:

    The question to ask is why should we the fans remain interested in this season? Our Ducks got out exactly what they put in…

    I would summarize this season as a failure! Saying it’s a disappointment is too much respect as IMO would signify a work ethic that we didn’t have. We played only 1/3 of the season, period!

    We have been saying this all season: We need a leadership change! I hope with Gabby starting training camp we will change our work ethic and give us, the paying fans the quality of hockey we deserve. I have no problem with failing as long as we try and we learn from our mistakes and improve.

    Competing nightly for the goal (Stanly Cup) should be our work ethic…nothing less! Just making the playoffs is not good enough. Any player that just shows up for a paycheck should be traded or released. We have no room for just “good enough”! We cannot afford to accept mediocre hockey as the norm (we have accomplished nothing since the Cup in 2007). Its not OK to play like this!

    The commentary from the last home game asking our Ducks how important it has been for them to receive support as a losing team is laughable.

    Teemu and to see what Gabby did with our group was the only reason to tune in!

    Hope we continue to lose so we have a chance to pick up the 1st draft pick as it looks like we will not be signing Schultz.

    I’m a Disgruntled Fan, can you tell? And yes I understand it’s just game however, why do anything if you’re not going to give 100%? Many would have loved to have had the chance to play at this level…show the fans that you want to be in Anaheim and your not just punching a clock!

  8. czhokej says:

    My hopes were too high after the coaching change. I am disappointed, our top line did not play up to the expectations. Aging and small players had a hard time (Koivu went from 19 goals 2 years ago down to 11, Blake played less games because of the injury, but we were hoping he would have better stats too. Hagman’s best year was 2008 (27 goals). Etc, etc.
    If we exclude our GM as one of the culprits, we have to focus our attention on Getzlaf ( as discussed here many times). I do not want to repeat myself – but after reading a post game interview with RG, I was fuming again. To answer what went wrong, our captain said: “…. I wish i could come up with answers. Different things and other stuff. … ”
    BB gave more specific answer: ” He is not a shoot-first guy, he is a shoot-third guy. … That will open up Corey for many more opportunities….”
    If Getz doesn’t know what was the problem (and BB cannot criticize him in public) we can offer some evaluation:
    Since the most goals are scored from within 15 feet from the net, the goal scorer must go there, he must find some open space around the crease and in the low slot. The better scoring chances are created when the net-minder is screened. It’s difficult to get to the rebounds and score when the player is in the corner or at the half -boards. It’s difficult for the whole line to be productive, if one player mostly puts himself in the neutral non-aggressive position…

    • Getz presents such a dilemma. I’m not convinced that he has the ability to change his game. Some guys can’t.
      If we continue with Bob Murray’s plan of building down the middle, maybe Bonino/Ryan become that 2nd line twosome that can score ES goals. If not maybe we trade for a Jason Spezza or Tyler Seguin and Getz drops to second line and second unit PP.
      The other alternative is trade Getzlaf for a true #1 D-man who we can build upon.
      I can understand anyone who thought we can build this team around Ryan Getzlaf. Sadly, the answer from his first seven years in the NHL is that Ryan Getzlaf is just not the player most hoped and believed he would become.

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