This narrative is all too familiar but the Ducks played some of their best hockey all season, ultimately losing the game on an undisciplined penalty.
Getting up for the emotional rematch of last years Game 7 Western Conference Final - it was all Ducks for the first two periods. As per hockeystats the Ducks were ahead in Corsi up until the mid-point of the 3rd, when the Preds made their push for the game tying goal.
It was then that Chris Wagner decided to cross-check known tyrant (haven't forgotten about your flagrant Manson-concussion inducing elbow) Filip Forsberg in the back and because Forsberg is said tyrant - he had his ass all puckered up, nice and off-balance ready to fall. Not saying it was a dive, but as a gay man I can definitely give him style points for graceful descent and if this were a Tony Hawk game he would be sure to get bonus points for extended air-time.
All of that said - Chris Wagner definitely did not need to do that. I get this is a heated game and nobody likes Filip Forsberg, but seriously Chris, you have a one goal lead with a depleted roster and your team needs a win. Just chill bro.
Speaking of chill, Nick Ritchie didn't appear to have any; which seems to be a common occurrence this year. It’s an unpopular opinion but I am with Felix, he needs to hold onto his stick harder and not flip out at the player right after the goal. Complain to the referee first and if that doesn't resolve the situation, get even on the score-sheet.
Just a gutless play by Ritchie to go after Fiala there. It’s his job to hold on to his stick. Point blank. Just an awful look. Awful.— Felix Sicard (@Felix_Sicard) December 3, 2017
It’s plays like that that lend to him needing a lesser role - taken off the penalty kill (which will happen once everyone is healthy) and if he keeps that kind of maturity level up (particularly if he pulls that kind of thing in the playoffs) it just makes it that much easier to leave him the odd-man out when Max Jones is ready to make the big club.
I do not disagree that the Ducks got screwed on a lot, a LOT of calls but that is the nature of the game, particularly in a foreign, very unfriendly building. It is an additional adversity that this club should be very much used to be now.
But enough with the negative stuff - fuck that was a good game.
Let’s start with the new kid, I realise I wrote rather wishful-thinkingly that my assumption was Blandisi would go straight to the Gulls but I can see why they wanted to test him up with the big-club first. Kid has size, speed and the kind of presence that reminds me of a young Belesky and no its not just his number. His “boarding?” call in the 2nd was incredibly perplexing but chalk that up to the kind of calls the Ducks can and should expect to go against them on a regular basis, because “reputation” or what-not (I just looked it up and it was officially “hooking” ....Ok sure guys). I get the feeling McNabb had an influence on Blandisi being the throw-in for that deal and I can’t wait to see how he pans out.
Kevin Roy - what can you say, takes a puck to the face then has the presence of mind to try a between-the-legs deke move.
If Kevin Roy had scored on this play... pic.twitter.com/lYeLbMyGCy— Felix Sicard (@Felix_Sicard) December 3, 2017
Three Stars of the Game
3. Filip Forsberg’s butt, for being so Kim Kardashian-esque and cross-checkable.
2. These guys (and gal?!) for putting the D&D game on hold and getting out to a hockey game.
- Ryan Miller (33 saves) and Cam Fowler (1 G, 1 A)