The Anaheim Ducks kicked off their five-game road trip with a 5-3 win over the Boston Bruins. After a convincing 5-1 win over the Tampa Bay Lightning on Friday, this marks solid performances over two very good teams in back-to-back games.
Zegras Officially Headed to All-Star Weekend
Trevor Zegras is officially heading to Sin City. While he won’t be playing in the actual All-Star Game, he will be taking part in the Breakaway Challenge. Zegras’ ability to think beyond boundaries will suit him well during this competition, and it’s likely that he’ll try to pull off something unthinkable.
Zegras joins John Gibson and Troy Terry as the Ducks’ representatives at All-Star Weekend. Gibson was initially named to the All-Star roster, while Terry was named to the team after winning the “Last Men In” vote for the Pacific Division.
Terry, Fowler Return from COVID Protocol
Speaking of Terry, he and Cam Fowler returned from COVID protocol and were back in the lineup for Monday’s game against the Bruins. Fowler had the second-highest amount of time on ice for the Ducks, and Terry potted his 23rd goal of the season. Fowler also had an assist and four blocked shots in his return.
Deslauriers, Mahura Suffer Injuries vs. Bruins
Nic Deslauriers played just 1:57 before a dangerous hit from behind by Oskar Steen ended his night. The Bruins forward hit Deslauriers high in the numbers and extended his arms during the hit. It was initially called a five-minute boarding major but was reduced to a two-minute boarding minor after review. The Ducks’ Twitter account listed Deslauriers as doubtful to return with a lower-body injury.
Josh Mahura also suffered an injury during the third period after losing an edge and crashing into the net. He appeared to be in a large amount of pain as he lay on the ice while Ducks’ trainer Joe Huff attended to him. Mahura was able to skate off to the Ducks’ locker room under his own power but did not return for the remainder of the game.
Henrique Close to Returning
Adam Henrique hasn’t played in a game since the beginning of December due to an upper-body injury, but he appears very close to returning. He joined up with the team for this road trip and skated on his own on Sunday following the team’s arrival in Boston.
Though he’s played in just 24 games this season, he still ranks in the top 10 on the Ducks in total points, and his presence on the top line with Terry and Ryan Getzlaf has been missed at times. Getting Henrique back will go a long way toward the Ducks returning a fully healthy roster.
Pateryn Scores First Goal as a Duck
After collecting his first point as a Duck on Friday, Greg Pateryn followed it up with his first goal as a member of the Ducks against the Bruins. A nice pass from below the goal line from Zegras set up Pateryn, whose slap shot from the point bombed past Tuukka Rask.
Even though Simon Benoit is expected to return from COVID protocol soon, Mahura’s injury means that Pateryn may keep his spot in the lineup. With Josh Manson still also in COVID protocol, having Pateryn in gives the Ducks a third right-handed option behind Kevin Shattenkirk and Jamie Drysdale.
Gibson Ties Hiller on Ducks’ All-Time Wins List
On Monday, Gibson grabbed his 162nd career win, tying him with Jonas Hiller for third on the Ducks’ all-time wins list. He is now 11 wins away from tying Guy Hebert for second on the list. It wasn’t the busiest game for Gibson as he faced only 26 shots, but the netminder has been a consistent force for the Ducks throughout his career.
After consecutive subpar seasons (he led the league in losses both times), Gibson is reminding the league why he’s considered one of the league’s elite goaltenders. His goals saved above average (GSAA) total is top-10 in the league and his goalie point shares (GPS), an estimate of the number of points contributed by a player due to his play in goal, of 6.2 place him seventh among goaltenders.
The Ducks embark to Canada for their Wednesday-Thursday back-to-back against the Toronto Maple Leafs and the Montreal Canadiens. Benoit and Henrique could rejoin the lineup and presumably slot in for the injured Mahura and Deslauriers, respectively. After two convincing wins, the Ducks look to be back on track.