[Note: Tonight's recap is a tag team effort between Chris and I. Except where noted, all commentary is from Chris]
The Ducks were a bit lucky to find themselves in the lead after two periods tonight, having been outshot 28-10. Even so, they looked to have put the game away less than four minutes into the third with goals from Ryan Getzlaf and Bobby Ryan, but Colorado made it interesting late in the game. Despite the late flurry, the Ducks held on for a 3-2 victory.
The win was Anaheim's sixth straight on home ice, fifth in a row overall and gives them a record of 8-1-1 in the 2012 calendar year.Good
- Bobby Ryan scored two breakaways in the game, the first of which came while shorthanded. He went five-hole on Jean-Sebastien Giguere with his first after picking up a turnover from Ryan O'Reily and switched it up on his next opportunity early in the third, going high glove.
- That second goal came courtesy of a stretch pass from Getzlaf, behind the goal line. Getzy also had a power play goal just 20 seconds into the third that barely crossed the line. Those two points make seven in Getzlaf's last five games.
- [From Robby] The relatively quiet Ducks' PP picked up a huge goal early in the third when Getzlaf slid a Teemu Selanne pass under Giguere. Though originally ruled no-goal on the ice, the play was reviewed and subsequently overturned.
- [From Robby] Jonas Hiller was a beast tonight. Midway through the third period, I was hoping that the Ducks would hold on to give Jonas his third shutout of the season. Even though the Ducks hung him out to dry to the tune of back-to-back goals late in the third, Jonas was Anaheim's best player on the ice, stopping 43 of Colorado's 45 (!!!) shots. Whatever was ailing Hiller in 2011 seems to have disappeared as the calendar turned to 2012.
- Cam Fowler had a rough night. His worst mistake was the heinous turnover behind the Ducks' net that led to Colorado's first goal. He also fumbled a puck at the blueline that would have led to a breakaway, had he not been bailed out by Francois Beauchemin. Even in the highlight package where Hazy was breaking down what he called "layers of defense," it was Cam's missed assignment that forced the supporting defenders into action.
- Nicklas Hagman left the ice momentarily during the second period limping severely, but I can't find anyone who actually saw what happened to him [Robby Note: I saw him come off the ice as well, but I missed the cause of the injury. Word on the street is they didn't show any of this on TV]. He returned to the game and finished with 16:07 TOI (over his season average), but played mainly with the third line while Jason Blake took his place with Teemu Selanne and Saku Koivu.
- [From Robby] I know it was a ticky-tack call, but the late penalty by Ryan Getzlaf was extremely costly. In what was an otherwise outstanding night, the penalty by Getzlaf almost cost the Ducks' a regulation win in a crucial 4-point game. Again, it wasn't a great call, but Getzlaf has shown a disturbing propensity to take back-breaking penalties late in games. It didn't cost the Ducks the points they needed, but it gave Colorado a chance in a game where they should have been dead.
- As mentioned above, the shot total was brutal, especially in the first period where the Ducks could only muster two shots on goal. Luckily, Bobby capitalized on the first, because the second was a long range shot by Sheldon Brookbank with 3:54 remaining in the first. Not only that, but Colorado poured it on in the third as the Ducks' lead became more tenuous, though Jonas was equal to the task.