Anaheim Ducks lose to Dallas Stars 3-2
Well, I knew it would be odd watching the game last night between Anaheim and Dallas; not only with the traded players, but Bobby Ryan is now sporting #9, instead of #54. What is this team doing to me???? (Side note: Ryan wearing #9 now means that Anaheim can’t retire Paul Kariya’s sweater….guess Selanne or Giguere will be the first to be raised to the rafters. I’m sooooo OK with that!)
Within the first 29 seconds of the game, new acquisition Erik Christensen proved he fits right in with the Ducks: he was called for hooking. Into the sin bin he went and – what a shock – Dallas scored. You have to feel for the poor guy, though; not a good way to introduce yourself to your team or your new fans. (Not to mention he wears Sammy Pahlsson’s old number… Oy!) Corey Perry tried a wraparound to tie things up and, looking at the replay, it should have been a goal. It looked like Turco actually helped push it over the line, but no one reviewed it. As is usual, I saw it numerous times on the telecast and I have to say – it was a goal. The first period was a fast, fast period, ending with Selanne tripping Robidas. Selanne and penalties aren’t the norm, but yeah – he was guilty this time. The second period had Sheldon Brookbank fighting Krystopher Barch; while I like Brookbank, this fight was long and seemed to peter out before the refs finally stepped in. (I was hoping Ott would be taken to task, broken hand or not, but that didn’t happen. I figure if he can fight Moen the other night, he can do so again.) Dallas scored again, but the Ducks weren’t letting up, with minor miscues you’d expect from a team that is basically brand new. The third period saw new Duck James Wisniewski (from the ‘Hawks) score a goal that was a beauty! Yea! However, Dallas scored again; Giguere looked absolutely stunned by that goal. Bobby Ryan scored again, as the commentators said: a highlight reel goal. It was. I love when the players end up IN the goal with the puck; it cracks me up. Why, I don’t know, but it does. (Here is the YouTube link for that goal: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rsFAkCQypSU) Rookie of the Year! Sadly, as great as that goal was, Dallas won. I have to note that the Ducks outshot Dallas 38-16 and, as mindboggling as it was, still lost the game. Again, statistically, the Ducks outplayed their opponent, only to lose. Turco must have had a rabbit’s foot AND a four leaf clover in his pads; he was that lucky last night.
The line of Parros/Niedermayer/Marchant line did really well last night; I haven’t seen Parros that aggressive in awhile. (Outside of dropping the gloves, of course. Maybe tomorrow against the Wild…) Petteri Nokelainen (I wouldn’t even try to pronounce that name and will be using copy and paste a lot when discussing him) won 7/8 face-offs, which is a good thing since Pahlsson is gone. The Ducks need that badly. I look forward to seeing the new guys tomorrow at the Ponda against Minnesota and I believe that if the Ducks don’t jell before the end of this season, next season will be pretty darn good. I see the new players (including Brookbank, Brown and Whitney) adding new depth and energy and could be the much needed shot in the arm that some of the “older” guys need.