Date: Monday November 25th, 2019
Time: 7:00 PM Pacific
Location: Honda Center, California
TV: Prime Ticket
Radio: AM 830
The Anaheim Ducks did not finish out their road trip the way they would’ve like. After beating the defensing champ St. Louis Blues, the Ducks dropped 3 straight, allowing at least 5 goals in each game, to finish their road trip 1-2-1.
They get to return home for a game tonight, but unfortunately their matchup is against a surging New York Islanders team. The Isles have a 17-game point streak going right now, 15-0-2 over that span. They are finding ways to win games, with a healthy dose of strong goaltending and team effort on the scoresheet. They might not have an abundance of elite-level talent, but they currently have 8 players with at least 10 points so they are finding ways to contribute up and down the lineup.
Anaheim will need to have a complete team playing tonight if they want to end the Isles point streak and skate away with a win. If they can’t capitalize on their chances and just aim for one or two goals, it’s not going to cut it. On the other end, if they can’t keep the shooting volume down in front of their goaltending, it may not matter how many goals the Ducks score, as the goaltending has seen some struggles the last couple weeks.
Keys to the Game
Stop the goal overload. As mentioned, the Ducks allowed at least 5 goals in each of their last three losses. If you’re allowing 5+ goals a game, you shouldn’t ever expect to win. Anaheim needs to tighten up defensively and really focus on limiting the scoring chances. Hopefully John Gibson and Ryan Miller shake off their recent play and get back to being one of the best tandems.
Balanced play. The Islanders have a good balance of talent through their lines. This means the Ducks can’t rely on just one or two lines to carry the others. Anaheim will need consistent effort from all 4 lines, with the expectation for their big players to lead the way on the scoresheet.
Players to Watch
Rickard Rakell has been heating up. With 5 goals, and 9 points, in his last 10 games he’s a threat every time he gets on the ice and the Ducks need to keep feeding him opportunities to make plays. Him and Ryan Getzlaf have good chemistry and if the Ducks plan on winning, expect Rakell to play a factor for the offense.
For the Islanders, Mathew Barzal is the best player on their team. He’s quick and he’s able to make some great plays happen if given the chance. The Ducks will need to choke down on his line, but I still see him getting some scoring looks based on his talent.