The Ducks outworked the Canucks in a full 60-minute effort in what can only be classified as a rebound game after an embarrassing loss to the Blackhawks on Friday. The third line opened the scoring with Shawn Horcoff getting the goal just 1:19 into the first period. The Ducks managed to hold the Canucks to the perimeter for much of the game, a marked improvement for the defense after a couple of lackluster performances. The top line of Rickard Rakell, Ryan Getzlaf and Corey Perry proved difficult to contain yet again, scoring the second goal of the game on the power play with 3 seconds remaining in the first period.
I arrived late to the game because driving on the 405 from LA is the worst. Luckily I did get to see the entire second and third period. Nick Ritchie stood out in this game to me (the first time in his 8 games played that I actually noticed him on the second line). The kid is huge on the ice and he is surprisingly fast when he wants to be. His skating reminded me a lot of Getzlaf. While he wasn't as active in the second period, he made his presence known in the third. Before I get to that, though, I want to talk about the second period. The middle frame was a success for the Ducks in the fact that they didn't get scored on and pushed play in the offensive end of the ice. I can only remember one quality shift from the Canucks, led by both Henrik Sedin and Daniel Sedin of course.
After a solid second period the Ducks continued to play in the third. They basically put the game away with Jakob Silfverberg's goal in a minute into the period. Ritchie earned the primary assist with a cross-ice saucer pass to Silfverberg. Even after scoring the third goal the team didn't let up and go into their usual turtle defense that we've seen this season. Ritchie had a short breakaway but was turned away by Ryan Miller. Not long after that Perry stripped a Canuck of the puck and went in alone on Miller to make it 4-0. Of course, the Ducks had to make it interesting when Chris Stewart took a double minor high-sticking penalty. Luckily the penalty kill is one of the things that the Ducks are actually good at and they were able to kill it off. Overall the game was a pretty convincing win that the team should try to replicate going forward.