By Michael Walters
The Chicago Blackhawks dominated the first period of play. They outshot the Ducks 19 to two in the opening 20 minutes and Jonathan Bernier had to be sharp early to keep Chicago from scoring. The Ducks went shorthanded just over six minutes into the period when Jared Boll was called for roughing. Bernier stopped all five shots he faced while the Ducks were shorthanded. With just over three minutes to go in the period, Ryan Getzlaf and Richard Panik exchanged words and dropped gloves. Both players received five minutes for fighting, but Getzlaf also received a 10-minute misconduct and an additional two-minute instigator penalty. Getzlaf wouldn’t return until about the last five minutes of the second period. There was no score after 20 minutes.
Randy Carlyle adjusted the lines with Getzlaf being out for a majority of the period playing his other centers more often. The Ducks came out more determined in this period and drew a penalty on Johnny Oduya. The Ducks managed two shots on goal, but couldn’t convert. The teams battled back and forth in this period and it looked like the game might remain tied at the end of the second period, but Corey Perry had others plans. After Chicago nearly scored on Bernier, the Ducks counterpunched and Perry found himself drifting alone across the slot. He fired the shot back against his body fooling Corey Crawford, who was learning to his left on the play. The shots were even at 12 apiece in the period, but the Ducks took a 1-0 lead to the locker room.
In the final frame, the refs put away their whistles and let the two teams play. Both teams had chances during the period, but no one could score. With just over two minutes to go, Chicago pulled Crawford for the extra attacker and applied pressure. The Blackhawks managed three shots on goal and had a few shots blocked or go wide as the Ducks hung on for the 1-0 victory.
The Ducks came into this game without John Gibson(lower body injury), Antoine Vermette(Suspension, due back Sunday), and Nick Ritchie(Upper-Body Injury) and managed to pull out a win despite a poor first period. In the opening frame, Chicago was all over the Ducks, but Bernier stood tall stopping all 19 shots he faced. Chicago’s Panik even got underneath Getzlaf’s skin causing him to take 17 minutes worth of penalties. Anaheim was able to adjust in the second period without their Captain. The Ducks even took a lead when Perry finally scored goal ending his 10 game drought. With a well rested Getzlaf back, the Ducks were able to hang on in the third and not give Chicago as many opportunities as they did in the first 20 minutes. And credit Bernier with the 43-save shutout to help the Ducks withstand the early onslaught by Chicago and then edge them out in the final period.
Bernier’s shutout was his 100th career NHL win.
Perry scored his first goal since February 9th against Buffalo.
The Ducks won back-to-back games for the first time since January 19th.
The Ducks are back in action today against the St. Louis Blues at 5 PM PT.
Click below to watch highlights of the Ducks win!
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March 10th, 2017