Though the Anaheim Ducks have followed a miserable October with a strong start to November, they’re hardly a polished product.
Coming off their first loss this month, the Ducks should have a good opportunity to rebound and continue their dominance over the visiting Edmonton Oilers on Wednesday night.
After going 1-7-2 in October, Anaheim (5-7-3) won the first four this month before failing to hold an early two-goal lead in Monday’s 4-3 overtime defeat to Arizona.
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"One point is always good, but you’ve got to believe at home, against a divisional opponent, you want two points," coach Bruce Boudreau said. "When you have a 2-0 lead after one (period), you should be able to close it out. We didn’t."
Boudreau was irritated with veteran Ryan Getzlaf, whose intended drop pass for teammate Corey Perry at the Arizona blue line was instead picked up by Mikkel Boedker for the game-winner.
"You can call it whatever you want," Boudreau said. "You don’t drop-pass to nobody. You don’t do it."
Lapses like that still plague the Ducks, who realize that not all the October kinks have been ironed out. The top line of Getzlaf, Perry and Patrick Maroon was a minus-5 and recorded one shot on goal Monday after totaling 10 points and a plus-8 rating in the previous two contests.
"At least we got the point and we can take a little bit out of that moving forward, but as a line, I thought we let our other guys down," said Getzlaf, who has six giveaways in the last three games to match the total from his first eight.
"For whatever reason, we seemed a little out of sync – as a line, as a unit. (The overtime) was another example of it."
Despite Getzlaf having no goals and two assists in his last eight home games against Edmonton (5-10-0), Anaheim has dominated this series in recent years. The Ducks swept last season’s four meetings and have won 21 of the past 25, including six straight at home.
The Oilers haven’t scored more than two goals in nine straight visits to Anaheim. Frederik Andersen has a 1.50 goals-against average while going 4-0-0 against them, though he did allow more than two goals for the first time in five starts Monday.
Edmonton had scored four goals in three straight games before totaling three in their last two and losing both. Those defeats have come since 2015 overall No. 1 pick Connor McDavid (five goals, seven assists) suffered a broken clavicle last Tuesday.
The Oilers trailed 2-0 after 18 minutes at Chicago on Sunday and didn’t score until Jordan Eberle’s goal in the third period of a 4-2 loss. It was the first for Eberle, who was playing his second game after missing the first 13 with a shoulder injury.
"We fall behind and then we have nothing to lose so then we play hard," coach Todd McLellan told the Oilers’ official website. "That has to happen right off the bat. I think that’s mental and I think that’s massaging the mindset and belief system that we have in place right now.
"It’s just not strong enough."
Taylor Hall has no points in the past two games after a six-game point streak during which he had four goals and eight assists. He has no goals in his last eight in Anaheim – all losses.