Recap: Ducks Get Lift from Familiar Face Against Lightning

“It’s going to be a boring game”, declared Anaheim Ducks‘ captain Ryan Getzlaf to Jill Painter-Lopez of Fox Sports West during the first intermission. If by “boring”, the Anaheim captain meant that his Ducks would claim a nail-biting 2-1 victory in overtime against the Tampa Bay Lightning on Tuesday night, then he couldn’t have been more right.

The Ducks held on for dear life for most of the night — the Lightning had their way in almost every facet of the game. They dominated the shot attempt battle 52-32, spending a large portion of the night in Anaheim’s third of the ice. The carnage was especially apparent in the third period, as Tampa Bay threw everything they had at the Anaheim net, outshooting the Ducks 23-10.

Yet, as they’ve done all season, the Ducks got contributions from their most important players in the most important moments of the game. Goaltender John Gibson, who’s been red-hot in the month of January, turned aside 27 of 28 shots to keep his team afloat. Getzlaf buzzed around the opposing net all night and capitalized on a rare Tampa Bay turnover in the second to knot things up. Rickard Rakell once again skated through mazes of defensemen, eventually leaping into the game-winning goal.

It’s no secret that Getzlaf hasn’t been quite himself this season. His shot metrics have dipped, and his goal-scoring has continued to tail off after a difficult 2015-16 campaign.  Ryan Kesler has been brilliant this season, worthy of his All-Star selection. Something just feels different when Getzlaf is in the limelight, however. As one of the last remaining ties to the 2006-07, his successes are, by proxy, an evocation of that rapture and a defiant declaration that the best is still yet to come for the still young franchise led by its not-so-young captain.

First Period

The opening period didn’t provide much in the way of offense, with nine shots combined between both teams and zero goals scored. The scoreboard could have told a much different story, however, had it not been for some of the most jaw-dropping misses of the season for both teams.

Ryan Getzlaf kicked things off when he stole the puck from Tampa Bay goaltender Ben Bishop behind the net, only to hit miss his wraparound attempt on a wide-open net. Perhaps the Lightning felt challenged to provide a miss of their own, as Valterri Filppula failed to convert on a perfect cross- ice pass from Jonathan Drouin with only a fallen Gibson to beat.

Second Period

Filppula would waste no time atoning for his earlier miss, banging home a rebound right in front of the Anaheim net. The Ducks’ would waste no time returning the favor, as Getzlaf would end his goal-scoring slump by beating Bishop on a bizarre broken play.

Anaheim’s lone goal of the period proved to be immensely valuable, as Tampa Bay would control play by a healthy margin, winning the shot attempt battle 17-10.

Third Period

The final frame would prove to be the most competitive, with high-flying action on both ends of the ice. The Ducks would finally get their act together on offense, pouring pucks onto the Tampa Bay net while drawing a number of penalties.

Gibson made a number of strong saves to keep his team in the game, notable on a wide-open Drouin shot late in the period to keep Anaheim in the game. Perry, though still in the midst of a goal-scoring drought, looked like the Perry of old, aggravating Bishop with a number of devilishly-timed slashes. A late surge from the Lightning would prove fruitless, sending the game to overtime.


The overtime period has almost become a running joke for Anaheim this year — the kind of joke that takes the edge off of a bruising reality. There was no need for self-deprecating humor, however, as Rickard Rakell neatly sent the Lightning packing just 54 seconds into the extra frame.

Rakell, who’s been nothing short of prolific this season, fished a loose puck out of a faceoff scrum and surgically placed it into the top right corner of the Tamp Bay net before Bishop could even flinch.

Scoring Summary


No scoring


TB – Valtteri Filppula (7) assisted by Nikita Nesterov (8) & Anton Stralman (12)

ANA – Ryan Getzlaf (6) unassisted


No scoring


ANA – Rickard Rakell (19) assisted by Ryan Kesler (20)

THW Three Stars

First: John Gibson (stopped 27 of 28 shots)

Second: Rickard Rakell (game-winning goal)

Third: Ryan Getzlaf (tying goal, 54% Corsi)


Tampa Bay Lightning at San Jose Sharks

SAP Center – 7:30 p.m. PST on Thursday, January 19

Broadcast channels – CSNBA, SUN

2016-17 Season Series: Nov. 12: San Jose (3), Tampa Bay (1)


Colorado Avalanche at Anaheim Ducks

Honda Center– 7:00 p.m. PST on Thursday, January 19

Broadcast channels – PT25, Altitude

2016-17 Season Series: Jan. 12: Anaheim (4), Colorado (1)