Another opening game loss is in the books but it wasn’t all the doom and gloom that many had foretold for the Randy Carlyle reboot.
Best: Ducks were out-shooting Dallas 12-1 at one point
Granted they were losing by that one shot. But hey its a thing.
Worst: Depres got injured... again
Not really sure what to do with this guy - but I guess it means Theodore time again? Or the dreaded Stoner Strikes Back.
Best: Cogs scored goals!
And one was on a breakaway! I request every Duck fan that happens across him in the street to high five him for what must feel like getting that (RIP Harambe) monkey off his back. He looked dangerous anytime he was near the front of the net and I hope he can keep that up.
Worst: Net Coverage
So bad, so so bad. On that first Dallas goal, not only was Johns left alone, but he had time to fumble the puck, control, re-position and then shoot to score. All the while Fowler, for some reason, decided not to pressure the pass and Manson was completely out to lunch covering the front of the net. Similar situation for the two Dallas goals in the third - even if one was slightly unfair due to some interference on Bieksa.
Best: The Youth is Coming Through
Ritchie looked much more comfortable with the twins and gave the sense of being a valued contributor to the line rather than a spare part like most of the left-wingers of recent past. Some of his decisions were questionable and frustrating at times but hopefully with consistent game time this year those get smoothed out. Larsson was also quietly excellent. The kid is ready. Sorensen was good also - could work on his defense some more but he wasn't terrible.
Worst: Rust or Apathy?
Two of the Dallas goals came from plays resulting from a breakdown where a penalty possibly could have been called - yet the Ducks didn't appear to get too upset about it. Roussel was his usual asshole self but I didnt see anybody take a massive run at him which would have been nice. The Ducks just seemed to be going through the motions at points, particularly in the second period which was snore-tastic. No one seemed to want to up the ante or attempt to shift momentum after that third Dallas goal.
3) American Airlines Arena Music Guy
Slightly lost my respect with whatever the hell that weird Japanses Harujuku Techno stuff was but immediately secured third star with tracks like Still D.R.E and some C.K.Y oh and not to mention Jimmy Eat World - Sweetness in the third.
2) Ducks Centers
They straight up owned the Stars in the face-off circle. Which I realise doesnt mean much in the grand scheme of things but it can only point to positive steps moving forward. Getzlaf, Kesler and Vermette were well over 50%. Now imagine Rakell with that trio. Yep.
1) Andrew Cogliano
Seemingly the only Duck to put it all together tonight. The supporting cast were there but they couldnt finish plays, pressure the passer or clear the net. It wasn’t all bad though. As far as Ducks opening games go this one was not as catastrophic as it could have been or as many had predicted.