By Michael Walters
The Anaheim Ducks traveled to Colorado to take on the Avalanche. Rickard Rakell is listed as day-to-day with an upper body injury the team announced. Jamie Drysdale did return to the lineup after the hard hit he received in Friday’s game.
The Avs almost scored in the beginning on a backhand pass by 72, who just missed the net wide. Colorado would convert on their next chance as MacKinnon would find Rantanen in the slot, who beat Miller.
The Ducks would go shorthanded and Danton Heinen had a good chance on the penalty kill, but just shot the puck wide of the net. Shortly after the penalty expired, Heinen would then score a tap in goal on a pass from Max Comtois.
Tempers did flare as Ryan Getzlaf and mixed it up. The teams came together a couple times after the play in the period. The Ducks went shorthanded again in the period, but killed it off. The teams were tied 1-1 after the opening frame.
The teams exchanged power plays, but neither team converted. Colorado would get another power play and they would score to make it 3-1. Cale Makar would take a point shot and Gabriel Landeskog would tip it past Miller.
After a decent first period, the Ducks were outshot 22-2 in this period with the Avs dominating the play.
The Ducks would get back within one after a turnover. Troy Terry would get the puck and get it past Grubauer, despite the puck slipping off his stick for a second.
It would be all Avs after that as they would respond with two goals of their own. J. T. Compher and Valeri Nichushkin would score in about a two minute span to make it a 5-2 game.
Anaheim got called for two consecutive penalties, but were able to survive the Colorado 5-on-3 power play. Final score was 5-2 in favor of Colorado.
Sam Steel was reassigned to the taxi squad.
The Ducks gave up a season high 48 shots against in this game.
Head Coach Dallas Eakins decided to go with the 11 forward / 7 defensemen lineup again despite facing Colorado in the second of back-to-back in their high elevation arena. Instead of keeping Zegras in the lineup with Adam Henrique and Troy Terry, he remained on the taxi squad and Nicolas Deslauriers took his place.
The first period was evenly played, but after that it was all Avalanche. The Ducks were lucky that the Avs didn’t drop another 8 goals on them again due to Miller’s play. Also another night of not icing the best lineup, especially in this situation, is going to continue to have bad results. At least the Ducks get a rare three day break this week.
The return home to face the Arizona Coyotes on Friday at 7 PM PT.
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March 20th, 2021