Read Between the Reeds: The Ducks’ Week

Week three in the 2016-17 NHL season was an eventful one for the Anaheim Ducks. After losing Johnathan Bernier and Ryan Getzlaf against the San Jose Sharks, dispatching the Nashville Predators 6-1 on home ice, and then forgetting to show up against the Columbus Blue Jackets, Bob Murray was able to work his magic and secure Hampus Lindholm to another team-friendly deal. It is safe to say Rickard Rakell and Ducks fans were pretty happy about the latter:

Here is your Ducks’ week three at a glance.

Week 3

Game 7: @ San Jose – 2-1 L in OT (Bernier; John Gibson replaced Bernier to start second period)

Game 8: Nashville – 6-1 W (Gibson) – Jakob Silfverberg scores the game-winning goal

Game 9: Columbus – 4-0 L (Gibson, Dustin Tokarski came in for the last 10 minutes of the third).

Overall: 3-4-2, 8 points; 5th in Pacific, 10th in Western Conference

Offense Continues to Struggle

Apart from the surprising six-goal outburst against the Predators, the Ducks’ offensive woes continued. After John Gibson stole a point in San Jose, the Ducks could not even manage a goal on home ice against the Blue Jackets on Friday night. Getzlaf, Cam Fowler, and Corey Perry continue to lead the team in scoring with Andrew Cogliano providing a surprising four goals already, including two shorthanded.

sharks salaries
(Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports)

Even though the Columbus game was awful, the Ducks’ offense has shown some life, scoring at least three goals in three of their last five. Three seems to be the magic number, as they are 3-0-0 when scoring at least three goals. The Nashville game provided some relief as Ryan Kesler and Jakob Silfverberg got their first goals of the season. If the defense and the combination of Nick Ritchie/Cogliano continues to provide some secondary scoring, the Ducks will get a much needed shot in the arm with the returns of Rakell (expected this week) and Lindholm.

How Swede It Is

In case you missed, some pretty big news happened in Anaheim this week:

Even with the questionable deals of Kesler and Kevin Bieksa, Bob Murray somehow managed to get the Swedish twins signed to team-friendly deals. Josh Cooper wrote a great article on how hard Murray tried to keep most of the team intact. Unfortunately, the reason the Ducks were able to afford Lindholm is due to the Nate Thompson and Simon Despres situations. As Cooper again pointed out, the Despres situation is a sad one:

Despite all of this, the important thing is Lindholm will be back in a Ducks’ uniform. Already with Fowler and Sami Vatanen leading the way, the addition of Lindholm will anchor an already solid blue-line and allow the likes of Clayton Stoner or Korbinian Holzer to be used sparingly. Although the cap situation will eventually have to be addressed, Ducks fans can rejoice to see Fowler, Vatanen, and Lindholm still together for the time being.

Week 4

Game 10: @ Los Angeles, Tuesday, November 1 – 7:30 PST

Game 11: vs. Pittsburgh, Wednesday, November 2 – 7:30 PST

Game 12: vs. Arizona, Friday, November 4 – 7:00 PST

Game 13: vs. Calgary, Sunday, November 6 – 6:30 PST

The first game of the Freeway Faceoff is underway as both the Los Angeles Kings and the Ducks look to shake off poor starts. With Johnathan Quick out for quite some time, the Ducks should be able to get two points in this one. Anaheim then welcomes in the defending Stanley Cup champion Pittsburgh Penguins the following night. With three divisional games this week, the Ducks are looking to gain some early momentum and get the offense clicking. Rakell’s return to the lineup should provide a much needed offensive push.

Highlight of the Week:

Easily could just say re-signing Lindholm, but I won’t take the easy way out. This was pretty impressive:

Minus of the Week:

Randy Carlyle was not too pleased after the Columbus game: