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BEST AND WORST: Hawks 3, Ducks 2 OT (11/27/15)

Don't pretend you didn't expect it.

Gary A. Vasquez-USA TODAY Sports

A two goal lead with two minutes to play was not enough to get the Ducks their two points, which shouldn't have been that much of a surprise given the competition.

Worst: Another Late-Game Collapse to the Blackhawks

Remember Game 5 of last year's Western Conference Final? The Ducks lead 3-0 after the first period, and 4-2 with two minutes remaining in the third. Then Jonathan Toews scored two goals with Corey Crawford on the bench, sending the game into overtime. Of course, Matt Beleskey was there to win it for the Ducks less than a minute into the extra frame. No such luck on this Black Friday tilt. The Hawks again scored twice with Crawford pulled, but this time they came away with the overtime win.

Best: A Good Start

The Ducks flat-out dominated the first half of the first period, and were the superior team for most of the game. Andrew Cogliano and Carl Hagelin were good, and if not for a couple of big saves by Crawford in the first, this recap could have a very different tone.

Worst: The Ex-Canucks

Kevin Bieksa and Ryan Kesler did nothing to convince me that they aren't having the worst seasons of their careers. Bob Murray really did plant the seed for a great team here. But just as that seed was about to sprout, he stopped watering it and started pissing on it.

Best: Ducks Fans Booing Patrick Kane

No reason to get too far into murky waters on the Kane issue right now, but plenty of players have been booed for far less.

Worst: Slow Starting Silfverberg

Jakob Silfverberg is good on the penalty kill and he does a lot of things really well five-on-five. Even after this start, I still think he's going to be worth his contract over the next four years. But that puck really has got to start going in. Playing with a center who never passes and a winger who should still be in the AHL (see below) isn't ideal, but it's no excuse for this long of a goal drought.

Worst: Rushing Ritchie

You don't score as much as Nick Ritchie has as a 19-year-old in the AHL without having some serious potential, and for that I'm glad he's part of the Ducks' system. But now is clearly not the time. Remember how bad Rickard Rakell looked in his first few games? No reason Ritchie can't eventually make the same leap as Rakell. I just don't see it happening before his 20th birthday.

Worst: The Standings


Best: The Pacific Division's Arpon Basu thinks the Ducks could be on top of their division by January. That sounds a little crazy to me, but a playoff spot in January is certainly not out of the question.

Three Stars
3) Patrick Kane

He tied Ed Olczyk and Phil Kessel for the longest point streak by an American player at 18 games. That is nothing short of remarkable.

2) John Gibson

He's made 67 saves on 70 shots in his career against the Blackhawks. Perhaps the future has arrived.

1) Artem Anisimov

I don't like giving the first star to the OT winner just because he was the OT winner, but in this case Anisimov's play in the other three periods, particularly the third, made a difference. His line (with Kane and Artemi Panarin) is lighting up the NHL, and it's not just because of 88.