Best: The Twins
Ryan Getzlaf was in typical Hulkzlaf form all 60 minutes. The Captain collected two points (1 goal, 1 assist) in 23:57 minutes of ice time. That is now 101 total playoff points in only 105 games. If Mike Milbury is praising you after the game something really stood out. The best part of his night had to have been laying a massive open ice hit on Calgary Flames’ captain Mark Giordano.
Also, Corey Perry might not have found the score sheet, but it was obvious how much impact he was having while on the ice. Every Calgary skater floated toward him while hardly playing attention to his linemates. Yet still, Perry found a way to create a couple of scoring chances. Now Carlyle just needs to find a way to get Perry some more help. If both players can keep up this level of play, the Ducks should keep on rolling.
Turnovers are going to happen. They are just part of a hockey game. Coaches just hope they do not come at either blue line, on a line change, or during special teams. Essentially everywhere. Josh Manson had a rough first period. While on the Ducks first penalty kill he failed to clear the blue line. This led to a defensive breakdown and an easy tap-in goal. Going forward the Ducks will have to minimize these plays to limit Calgary’s skilled plays off the rush.
Best: Playoff Hockey in Anaheim
Honda Center is on a whole different level when the extra season starts. There is something about playoff hockey that gets the blood pumping. Local news stations start to give the Ducks some love, Getzlaf gets on KROQ’s Kevin and Bean, and all of Anaheim gets an orange makeover. The beer is flowing and hopefully your metabolism can keep it all off until June. April is a great time for any hockey fan. With that being said, one day the Ducks will fully Paint it Orange and wear their orange jerseys to match.
Worst: The Timing of Chants
I love the new “You Can’t Win Here” chant in a loud Honda Center. Hockey needs that kind of energy. What it does not need is 17,174 fans jinxing their favorite team in the playoffs. The Anaheim faithful used it immediately after the Getzlaf goal only a minute into the first period. However, anything could have happened in the next 59 minutes of the game.
During the playoffs, puck luck and weird rituals become the norm. All of us crazy people feel a sort of validation during the Stanley Cup Playoffs because every habit is obviously necessary. Would the Ducks have won if I did not stuff my face with buffalo wings and beer for Game 1? Let’s save this awesome chant until the end of a game if the Ducks are still in the lead.
Honorable Mention: Ryan Kesler’s Last Minute Antics
With only seconds left in the game, Ryan Kesler was able to block a point shot. Instead of moving it along out of the zone and risking a turnover, the center “artfully” sat on the puck. He earned himself a beat down from the Flames and a delay-of-game penalty, but wow was it effective.
And thus Keslering was born.
3. Brian Elliot
2. Jakob Silfverberg
1. Ryan Getzlaf