Tuesday, 23 October, 2018

Analyzing the Matchups of the Conference Finals

Rita Gibson | 22 May, 2017, 22:47

The Ducks meanwhile need to regroup after a less than stellar performance in the series opener, though if there is anything they can take from their game one loss is that they didn't play almost up to their potential and still managed to send the game to overtime. The Ducks went scoreless on four power plays.

So when he found a patch of open ice during the third period Wednesday night, Ritchie could let fly with a attractive shot, his wrists unencumbered by the weight of history. The Ducks' last tally with the man advantage came in Game 2 of the series with the Oilers, and they've gone 0-for-20 in the six contests since.

The Nashville Predators captured a 3-2 overtime win against the Anaheim Ducks in Game 1 of the Western Conference Final Friday night at the Honda Center in a showdown that set the tone for what figures to be a grueling and physical series. Nashville has won both playoff matchups against the Ducks, including a seven-game series in the 2016 postseason.

"We were down 1-0 for a little bit, and we didn't panic", Ritchie said. "We actually started to play better once they scored, and we got another one and then we kind of brought it home with good defensive hockey".

Ryan Getzlaf and Corey Perry were major reasons the Ducks were able to buckle down and edge the upstart Oilers. "Was that our best 60 minutes? Eh? When you remove that and look at the big picture our entree into the playoffs was about as good as we could ask", said Oilers Head Coach Todd McLellan. The Alberta native can make excellent tape-to-tape stretch passes up to the forwards and gets shots through from the point, which could see him supplant Sekera on the second power-play unit in the future. The previous two times the Penguins eliminated the Capitals, they went on to win the Stanley Cup. But the Ducks would eventually get one by him when Andrew Cogliano tied the score 8:55 into the middle period. "We won't have to answer that experience question anymore, which is nice".

"Certainly, we wanted very badly to beat those guys", Patrick Maroon, Edmonton's big forward, said. The Oilers star had three goals in the series but none came in the final two games. I'm done picking against Nashville as it has the clear edge in goal here and is 2-0 all-time vs. the Ducks in the playoffs.

Xhaka vows to stick to combative approach
Gary Neville defended Mourinho and said he has "found a formula to get him through these big games". "Herrera played every game". Granit Xhaka scored the first goal for Arsenal.

As devastated as the Edmonton Oilers were and are after coming one game short of advancing to the Western Conference final, they haven't lost sight of what they accomplished. Klefbom will likely replace Griffin Reinhart, who played in his first National Hockey League game since 2016 in Sunday's 7-1 goal explosion over the Ducks.

"I'm anxious to get back out on the ice", Rinne said. "It's a phenomenal feeling".

Ducks forward Jakob Silfverberg opened the scoring, and John Gibson made 43 saves. Caggiula challenged defenceman Shea Theodore as he took the puck out from behind the Ducks' net, with Caggiula's stick striking the puck to put it over Gibson's right leg and trickling in.

Though Anaheim struck first, the first period belonged to Nashville. In those nine Game 7s, Ovechkin has three goals and three assists, and at the moment he is earning praise from teammates and coach Barry Trotz in this series for accepting a demotion to the third line.

The Ducks will be back on ice two days after finishing off Edmonton in Game 7. That's certainly not uncommon, but Anaheim probably wouldn't have minded getting one of those random two-day hiatuses caused by a random lack of arena ability. After the team's NHL-record three-goal comeback win in game five, they were just too spent to put up a fight in game six on May 7 when the Edmonton scored five times in the opening period alone.

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