The stories all read the same lately. From NHL.com to OCR, everyone seems to be asking the same questions. Are the Ducks good now? Is it safe to take your hands away from your eyes and actually expect to see a win? Are they no longer proving the adage that a watched pot is never consistently good at hockey?
The storyline feels natural, especially with the loss of Getzlaf turning out to be, in fact, NOT the end of the world. The player whose loss drove this team into a midseason tailspin last year, and upon whose fragile ankle this team balanced down the stretch, isn't being rushed through his recovery by the scoreboard or the standings.
Actually, if there's one safe place for a Ducks fan to look these days, it's probably the standings, specifically the Pacific Division standings. The Sharks and Kings are really hurting in the New Year, while the Stars continue to surge and the Coyotes have points in seven straight. Anaheim is looking to end that streak and build on its 8-4-0 record in the PAC (no one else in the division has more than five division wins).