By Adam Brady (email@example.com)
ANAHEIM – Coming off a disappointing loss to the Dallas Stars two nights ago, a home date with the struggling Florida Panthers seemed like the perfect time for the Ducks to get back to their winning ways.
|Perry's early goal was the only one of 45 shots the Ducks got past Anderson all night.
Unfortunately for Anaheim, the Panthers weren’t willing to play along.
Despite coming into the game with a league-worst nine standings points and a 1-6-1 road record, the Panthers rode the play of winger David Booth and backup goalie Craig Anderson to a 3-1 defeat of the Ducks in front of a near-capacity Sunday crowd at Honda Center.
"We have to look ourselves in the mirror and see what we can improve on," said goalie Jean-Sebastien Giguere. "This is a good week to take a step back and go back to work rested. We have to be better at home. It’s unacceptable to play like that in front of our fans."
Florida entered the game having lost its last six, including a 3-2 defeat to the Kings last Thursday and a 4-1 loss last night in Phoenix.
"They were having a tough road trip so far and they played last night in Phoenix, so they had to travel here. I think if we would have played a solid first period and took their will away, maybe the scenario would have been different tonight," Giguere said. "But we didn’t do that, we game them life and that is what happens."
Booth notched his first career hat trick over the first two periods to push the Panthers to a two-goal lead they would never relinquish. That was thanks in great part to Anderson, who saved 44 of a season-high 45 Anaheim shots in just his fifth game of the year.
"You have to give a lot of credit to Anderson," said Corey Perry, who had the Ducks' only goal, an early first-period strike. "He stood on his head. He was good with his rebounds. We were in front of him and banging away, but he laid his pads on the ice. A lot of pucks just kept bouncing off his pads and then he covered them up. It’s just one of those nights where it just didn’t go in the net for us."
Booth struck once in the first and twice in the second, as the Ducks gave up their second hat trick in as many games. Mark Parrish had three goals in his Dallas debut in a 5-2 Ducks loss two nights ago.
The Ducks did manage to score early, as Corey Perry tickled the twine just 1:41 into the game. Steve Montador dropped a pass to Perry, who walked into the right wing circle and wristed a shot under Florida goalie Craig Anderson.
But Booth responded with three unanswered, the first coming just over three minutes after Perry’s goal. That came when Giguere fell to the ice trying to defend a Jassen Cullimore shot in front, and Booth had room to whip a backhand into the net.
The two teams remained knotted at 1 until 6:18 into the middle session, when Booth one-timed it over Giguere from the slot off a Stephen Weiss feed.
And with less than two minutes left in the period, Booth struck on the power play following a Scott Niedermayer interference minor. Booth skated unabated into the right wing circle before unleashing a wrist shot that travelled past a Richard Zednick screen and Giguere.
The Ducks put the pressure on the Panthers in the third, peppering Anderson with 20 shots on goal, but he let nothing through the entire session. It was the second win of the season for Anderson, who had 41 saves in a victory over Ottawa on Oct. 22. He also set an NHL record for most saves in a shutout when he stopped 53 shots in a 1-0 win over the Islanders last March 2.
A major reason for the Ducks' bevy of shots was Ryan Getzlaf, who tried 11 of his own, by far his career high. His previous best total in a game was six. The Ducks previous season high for shots on goal was 37 (twice).
"I didn’t think we were physical enough and I didn’t think we executed to the level that was necessary until later in the hockey game," said Ducks coach Randy Carlyle. "In the NHL, it takes 60 minutes to win and I don’t think we played 60 minutes."
The Panthers improved their record to 5-8-1, while Anaheim fell to 9-7-1.
The Ducks don't play for four days before a Friday tilt with Nashville at Honda Center.
"We have four days off here and a couple days off to ourselves," Perry said. "We’ll just get our heads away from the game for a couple of days and come back to practice on Wednesday and be prepared."
Said Carlye, "I told them to take two days, come back and be prepared to go to work on Wednesday. It’s the first chance we’ve had in a long time to have a two-day break. We feel that this time is important for them to get rest, get their heads free of hockey for 48 hours, clean the garage and kiss their wife."
20:00 - The Ducks get nothing going over the final seconds, which was pretty much the story of the game. They get a season-high 45 shots, but only one gets through as the Panthers take it, 3-1.
19:32 - ANA Penalty - Corey Perry
, 2 min. slashing and 2 min. roughing and FLA Penalty - Keith Ballard, 2 min. roughing. After the Panthers ice the puck, Perry gets into it with former Coyote Keith Ballard. Perry lands a couple of blows to the head before they both tumble to the ice. The frustration is evident.
19:20 - The Ducks keep it up, but everything is bouncing back to them.
17:40 - Giguere heads to the bench for an extra attacker.
17:29 - Marchant tries on from close in that's saved by Anderson just before Marchant runs into him and causes a pileup in the crease. The Ducks have 41 shots.
16:00 - Perry and Getzlaf both try, but Anderson is letting nothing through.
14:05 - Getzlaf one-times the 38th shot on goal for the Ducks, and Anderson again stops it. Nothing's getting through this kid tonight. The one speckle of hope is that we're at the last timeout and the Power Players hit the ice again.
13:17 - Kunitz is denied twice, once by Anderson and once by the post.
12:29 - And they don't get it.
10:29 - FLA Penalty - Stephen Weiss, 2 min. interference. I'll say it again, the Ducks need one badly here.
10:27 - The Ducks put several more shots on net, but Anderson stops them all. Anaheim has 32 shots and only one goal to show for it.
8:28 - The Ducks get another almost
, as Sutherby feeds a charging Scott Niedermayer, and his shot goes under Anderson but wide.
7:40 - Selanne tries one from his patented spot in the circle, but Anderson denies it, as well as the follow-up tries.
6:26 - FLA Penalty - Gregory Campbell, 2 min. hooking. The Ducks desperately need one here.
6:10 - Morrison has been dropped to the fourth line with Sutherby and now Marchant and Carter are skating with Selanne.
5:17 - Carter gets some space on the wing and lets go of a wrist shot that Anderson corrals.
4:02 - The Ducks look like they're going to get one when Anderson goes down again with traffic right in front of him, but neither Perry nor Kunitz can force it through and Perry even sends one off the post.
0:00 - Here we go in the third.
20:00 - END OF PERIOD - Not a good one for Anaheim, as they give up two Booth goals and trailed by a couple going into the second intermission.
18:12 - FLORIDA GOAL (POWER PLAY) - DAVID BOOTH - Booth gets yet another one as he skates from the corner to the circle all alone and unleashes a wrist that that gets past Giguere. He was screened a bit by Richard Zednick in front. It's the second straight hat trick the Ducks have given up and they're down 3-1.
16:20 - The Ducks dodge one big time, as the puck gets behind Giguere in the painted area and is swept away just in time by Beauchemin. Looked like a certain goal.
16:18 - ANA Penalty - Scott Niedermayer, 2 min. interference. Scotty impedes the path of a Florida player as the Ducks control the puck. Tough break because the Ducks were cycling it well.
15:28 - Moen gets slammed hard into the wall behind the Florida net.
12:37 - Getzlaf inexplicably holds the puck instead of taking the shot from the circle with plenty of room to spare after a Scott Niedermayer feed. Instead, he tries to head behind the net and shoot it off Anderson. Anderson stops it and also stops another try by Getzlaf.
8:42 - ANA Penalty - Scott Niedermayer, 2 min. hooking.
6:18 - FLORIDA GOAL - DAVID BOOTH - Booth gets his second of the game on the rush, as Weiss sends the puck to him in the slot and he one-times it over Giguere, who holds the glove in the air for a few seconds in frustration. Florida leads it 2-1.
5:20 - A shift change puts Chris Kunitz, Brendan Morrison and Brian Sutherby on the power play. Who would have thought that among that group, Sutherby is the leading goal-scorer with three.
4:35 - After a Pronger shot is deflected into the protective netting and gets stuck, the crowd in that area applauds a girl who climbed up to retrieve it. Nicely done.
3:48 - FLA Penalty - Jassen Cullimore, 2 min. tripping.
I was a little worried in the first period because the tennis balls were sitting several seats apart, and in different sections. But they've reunited.
1:28 - The Ducks nearly get a couple, as Hedican rifles one just wide and Pronger bounces one in that Anderson just barely stops.
0:00 - Off and running in the second.
20:00 - END OF PERIOD - Ducks get one. Panthers get one. We're tied 1-1.
19:25 - Anderson ends up flat on the ice after trying to freeze the puck with Perry all over him. Getzlaf picks it up and tries to shoot it over him and somehow he gloves it while still on the ice.
18:33 - Getzlaf gets a feed from Perry and rips a one-timer, but it flies barely wide.
Here's one more of our boy Anderson.
16:08 - Giguere makes a nice stop on a hard Bryan McCabe shot. It will be interesting to see how he plays tonight, after getting pulled two nights ago.
It's trivia time and the woman is asked, How many franchise records did J.S. Giguere set last season? She guesses three and ... sorry. The answer is 4. Career records for shutouts and wins as well as season records for GAA and save percentage. I'm pretending I knew that one, but I didn't.
15:33 - ANA Penalty - Steve Montador, 2 min. hooking. First penalty for the Ducks. Again, not ever
14:58 - Sutherby skating with Selanne and Morrison, instead of Carter.
Incidentally, here is my favorite picture of Florida goalie Craig Anderson, taken last season.
6:38 - FLA Penalty - Jay Bouwmeester, 2 min. tripping. First power play for the Ducks. Not ever
. In this game.
6:35 - Perry slaloms into the slot and gives Kunitz a great feed on the doorstep, but Kuni whiffs on it.
4:00 - FLORIDA GOAL - DAVID BOOTH - Giguere falls to the ice trying to defend a Jassen Cullimore shot in traffic. That leaves plenty of room for Booth to pick up the puck and whip a backhand over Giguere. We're tied.
1:41 - ANAHEIM GOAL - COREY PERRY - Steve Montador races down the right wing and drops it to Perry, who eludes one Panther before moving into the circle and wristing a shot under Anderson. It's 1-0 early.
0:00 - We're underway at Honda Center.
5:08 p.m. - Ceremonial puck drop honoring Operation Homefront, with a wounded soldier doing the honors. Big applause and a nice moment. Yesterday's event where they spent the afternoon with the Ducks was phenomenal, by the way.
5:07 p.m. - Dawn Wright delivers another passionate rendition of the anthem, wearing a red top instead of her customary Ducks jersey. We also learn during the song that Travis Moen's hair is completely out of control. It looks like Nick Nolte's mugshot
Starting Goaltenders - ANA Jean-Sebastien Giguere; FLA Craig Anderson
Starting Skaters - ANA Francois Beauchemin, Scott Niedermayer, Samuel Pahlsson, Rob Niedermayer, Travis Moen; FLA Keith Ballard, Jassen Cullimore, Stephen Weiss, David Booth, Richard Zednik
Scratches - ANA Nathan McIver, Brad May; FLA Kamil Kreps, Nick Boynton