Open Gameday Thread: Rangers @ Ducks

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New York Rangers
@ Anaheim Ducks

Saturday, Oct 8, 2011, 10:00 AM PDT
Ericsson Globe Arena - Stockholm, Sweden

TV: VERSUS, TSN

RADIO: Via AnaheimDucks.com

Your Enemy: Blueshirt Banter

Complete Coverage >



ROBBY:

Through the first set of Premiere games, the Ducks are the only team that has failed to secure any standings points. After one game each, here's how the four teams that traveled to Europe sit.

Goals For

Goals Against

Shots For

Shots Against

PP %

PK %

Buffalo

4

1

25

30

50%

100%

Los Angeles

3

2

30

26

20%

100%

New York

2

3

26

30

0%

80%

Anaheim

1

4

30

25

0%

50%

 

I'm not sure what this means, if anything, but I'm glad that we're facing the Rangers today and not the Kings. Like the Ducks, the Rangers have struggled with the man-advantage and haven't been able to keep the puck out of their own net when short-handed.

As GM Bob Murray pointed out earlier this week, as the Ducks' first line goes, so goes the team. And in yesterday's game, there wasn't a whole lot to be inspired by. And it wasn't as if the Ducks didn't have their fair share of chances against the Sabres. Ryan Miller effectively slammed the door on numerous occasions and things don't figure to be much easier today against Henrik Lundqvist. Much like it didn't work against Miller, the top line will once again fall short if they try to rely on the fancy stuff. However, if they are able to conjure up the gritty, workmanlike goals that they are known for, they should be able to get one or two by Lundqvist and jump-start the team.

At this point, PP time is probably the Ducks' own worst enemy, as they don't seem to have the chemistry necessary to exploit the man advantage. Against the Rangers, the Ducks should send traffic to Lundqvist's crease (which will be made all the easier by Marc Staal's absence) and get a garbage goal or two. In fact, of the two PP units, the second unit looked more dangerous yesterday as it was more focused on putting pucks on net and not making the extra pass.

Given that today's game is the second of a back-to-back, I wouldn't be stunned to find Dan Ellis getting the start today. Either way, here's hoping the Ducks' defense shows up with a more cohesive strategy to help out whoever does man the crease.

Although yesterday's result was disappointing, things could be worse. We did at least score a goal. That didn't happen until the second game last season.

Go Ducks.

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