By: Michael Walters
The Anaheim Ducks (16-10-5) take on the Detroit Red Wings(13-14-4) today at 4 PM PT. This is the first meeting between the teams this season.
This will be Anaheim’s final visit to Joe Louis Arena as the Red Wings will play in Little Caesar’s Arena starting next season. The Joe Louis Arena has been mostly a house of horrors for Anaheim, where the Ducks are 7-25-8 during the regular season with a 6-10 record in the playoffs. However, the Ducks do have some memorable moments, including two wins in Detroit during the 2003 playoffs when the Ducks swept the Red Wings en route to their first Stanley Cup Final. The best moment came in the 2007 playoffs when Anaheim was trailing late in Game 5 of the Western Conference Final 1-0. Scott Niedermayer tied the score with 48 seconds left in regulation and then Teemu Selanne won it in overtime to give the Ducks a 3-2 series lead. Anaheim clinched Game 6 at home and then went on to win their first Stanley Cup against Ottawa.
The Anaheim Ducks are having an outdoor watch party tonight at the Edwards Theater Courtyard. The address is 13782 Jamboree Rd, Irvine, CA 92602 and the fun starts at 2 PM. For more info visit: Ducks Outdoor Watch Party
After a shaky start against the Boston Bruins going down 2-0, the Ducks answered back pulling out a 4-3 win. Boston scored twice in 13 seconds and Randy Carlyle wasn’t having any of it as he immediately called a timeout. It worked as the Ducks answered with a goal 24 seconds later and then another before the period ended to tie the game. The Ducks had given up two goals within less than a minute in the third period against Dallas at the start of this road trip. Later in that period the Ducks gave up three more goals in less than a 4-minute span. Carlyle calling a timeout in the Boston game not only stopped the bleeding, but it was likely the reason Anaheim earned the two points. The Ducks have been victimized giving up multiple scores in a short period of time throughout this season. They need to find a way to not allow it happen or Carlyle is going to have to burn his timeouts when it does occur.
The Ducks sit in second place in the Pacific Division, where any given night the standings change due to the tight race within the division. Anaheim’s lineup has been set for several games now and it doesn’t appear change too often. Yesterday the Ducks had the day off, so if there are any changes they will likely be announced today shortly before the game. Ryan Kesler and Rickard Rakell lead the teams in goals with 12 each. Andrew Cogliano and Jakob Silfverberg each have eight goals. Cam Fowler, Corey Perry, and Nick Ritchie each have seven.
Keys To The Game:
The Ducks are looking to avoid the slow start that happened in Boston two nights ago. Anaheim was able to come back and win that game, but what was a staple of past is no longer for the Ducks. Anaheim rarely comes from behind to win games this season so they will look to jump out early and score first. The Ducks have been great on the power play with a 22.8% efficiency(4th in the NHL), but the penalty killing has slipped recently. Anaheim is just above 80% on the penalty kill(80.4%) which is 20th in the league. The Ducks will look to avoid the penalty box tonight.
Anaheim’s Projected Lineup
John Gibson (Unconfirmed)
The Red Wings aren’t playing as well as they did last season, but they always seem to give Anaheim their best. Detroit is on a bit of slide having lost four in a row. They lost to Columbus, Philadelphia, Arizona, and most recently Los Angeles. They find themselves in seventh place in the Atlantic Division and currently out of the playoff picture. Their leading scoring is the young rising star Dylan Larkin, who has nine goals. Mike Green is second with seven goals. Henrik Zetterberg and Frans Nielsen both have six goals.
Keys To The Game
Detroit needs to find a way to generate more scoring chances and goals. In their last four games, they have only scored three goals and never more than one in any of those contests. Their season goal differential is currently -13. The Red Wings lack of production on the power play hasn’t helped matters also. They currently sit in last place with only a 13.3% efficiency with the extra man. They also need to limit their opponents chances as they nearly give up 31 shots against a game(30.6). They are good in the face-off circle with a 52.6% winning percentage(4th in the NHL) so they will look to maintain possession as much as possible in this game by winning face-offs.
Detroit’s Projected Lineup (Dailyfaceoff.com)
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December 17, 2016