Anaheim Ducks Unable To Bypass The King In Goalie Showdown
The Anaheim Ducks seemingly awake from their slumber but still fall to the Rangers of the Empire State, unable to make most of their chances.
One can only imagine what it’s like to play at Madison-Square Garden.
There have been so many historic sporting events, as it brought the best out of the world’s best athletes.
Like that time Kobe Bryant set the MSG point record with 61, only to have Carmelo score 62 four years later.
And after being severely outshot and outplayed by opponents, Anaheim realized they can do that to teams as well – bringing their A-game to New York.
They took control of the game early, outshooting the Rangers 16-7 in the opening 20 minutes of play.
But they had their roadblocks.
Present Versus Future:
Despite showing signs of wear and tear this season, Henrik Lundqvist has been the hallmark of Swedish goaltending.
Hockey is not the biggest sport in Sweden but if you ask a native to name a hockey player, he is without fail the one everyone knows.
And he reminded us why versus the Anaheim Ducks tonight.
Safe to say having a short memory Is beneficial as he didn’t look like someone who had a .879 save % in January.
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The Rangers were outshot 44-20 but were able to ride Lundqvist’s coattails as he made 43 saves.
No matter any angle Anaheim was trying to shoot the puck, Henrik was unstoppable.
From the point, in the slot. Close but no cigar.
As with John Gibson, he hopes to be that same figure in the goaltending world for the American side when all is said and done.
The person that currently occupies that title would be Ryan Miller.
Gibson, of course, led the U-20 USA team to Gold in 2013 posting a .955 save % and 1.36 GAA to be named the tourney MVP.
He had a few crucial stops of his own, flashing the leather on multiple breakaways.
And now, lessons in goaltending from @JohnGibson35.
Lesson 1: Robbing shooters on the breakaway. pic.twitter.com/odqSetPpNN
— Anaheim Ducks (@AnaheimDucks) February 8, 2017
But it was a shame the offense was a no show, giving Gibson his third loss in his last four starts.
No need to worry about his performance because he will bounce back.
Goaltenders are an interesting breed in that being in net in every outcome, makes them better.
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Of the many negatives while watching a hockey game, we as Ducks fans have grown accustomed to seeing refs constantly making penalty calls on our team.
The Anaheim Ducks are second in the league in penalties this season with 252 assessed infractions, behind the Calgary Flames.
But we shouldn’t blame the refs though given that you can’t get every call right. Especially when the game operates at high speeds.
That plus much of the penalties were a product of us playing sloppy anyway. I.e.second in hooking penalties.
Tonight’s game, however, was a different story as Anaheim had just one penalty called against them while earning four.
Head Coach Alain Vigneault recorded his 600th win as an NHL coach.
He becomes the 15th person in NHL history to reach this milestone, sixth among active coaches.
Vigneault has been a bench boss since 1997, landing his first gig with the Montreal Canadiens as a 36-year-old.
Before the game got out of reach for Anaheim in the third period, they couldn’t make most of what they were given.
The Ducks had a chance to tie the game before second intermission.
As Rangers defenseman Brady Skjei was called for a high-sticking penalty on Antoine Vermette with three minutes left, resulting in a four-minute power play.
They only had two shots on goal during that man advantage, with three shot attempts being blocked.
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