ANAHEIM, Calif. — For at least one night, the Anaheim Ducks are the best team in the league.
But should they continue to play the way they have been, that reign could last longer.
The Ducks are continually finding ways to win and Monday night at the Honda Center was no different. The Bruins, second-best team in the Eastern Conference, controlled much of the game but you would never guess it based on the final score: A 5-2 Anaheim win.
A sellout crowd of 17,238 had the arena bursting at the seams for the fifth-straight home game. It was the Ducks’ fourth-straight victory and the 14th in the last 15 games. A regulation loss has yet to be recorded at the Honda Center and their league-leading 69 points is two ahead of Chicago.
In the club’s best stretch through 45 games ever, the records are barely inked before the team rewrites them. It’s a simple formula: the Ducks are just playing without regards to anything, but earning two points every night.
"It’s hard not to pay attention to it a little bit, but we try not to talk about it," said Ducks head coach Bruce Boudreau. "When you’re going to look back on it in a little bit of time, whether it’s a year or two years, you’re going to go, ‘That was a pretty good run. We didn’t know we were having that kind of run.’"
It’s not lost on the team. It’s a group that is having an enviable amount of fun while playing and the chemistry and confidence is undeniable.
"We know that if we play good hockey, we have a chance to win every night," said winger Ryan Getzlaf. "We’re a good enough team that if we outwork the other team, we’re going to win. We do that to measure ourselves against ourselves."
Boston played fast and hard, out-shooting the Ducks 32-20 and came out firing in the first period. Anaheim registered only three shots on goal in a sluggish first period while the Bruins threw 16 on net but Jonas Hiller stopped every one to give the Ducks a chance in the next frame.
"Sometimes it’s easier to get a lot of shots so you feel right in the game," Hiller said. "You definitely don’t want to give up the first goal. I wasn’t too happy with the last two games, my first periods seemed a little slow, so I wanted to make sure I played well in the first tonight."
Nearly six minutes into the second period, Mathieu Perreault converted on that chance when he scored on the power play — his first of two goals — and brought the Ducks to life.
Hiller won his career-high 12th straight start.
"It shows we can play with anybody," Perreault said. "Even when we play the better teams in the league we’re able to stand up and win games. It feels like we find ways to win games no matter what."