Tonight, the Ducks stopped off at Bridgestone Arena in Nashville for game three of their seven game, 13 day road trip. This was the first of four meetings between the Ducks and the Predators this season, and their first reunion since the Preds eliminated the Ducks in six games during last season’s Western Conference Quarterfinals. Unfortunately for the Ducks, the Preds have had the Ducks’ number in the past three seasons with an overall record of 7-3-2, with three of those wins coming from four match ups last season.
Tonight was no different. Just 14 seconds into the first period, Patrick Hornqvist got the inside positioning on Getzlaf to hack away at a puck that bounced off Hiller’s pads onto Hornqvist’s stick and into the back of the net. Later in the first period, new father of twins, George Parros, dropped gloves for the first time this season with Brian McGrattan. Parros was already sporting stitches under his eye from taking a puck to the face during practice this week, but was unaffected by any blows from McGrattan, who left the ice blowing kisses to the crowd.
A scary moment came in the first when the Preds’ Mike Fisher, just three games back back from off-season shoulder surgery, skated across the center of the ice with his head down and was checked by Francois Beauchemin, causing gloves, sticks, and helmets to drop and players to express their unhappiness with each other. Fisher left the game and didn’t return. The first period ended with the Preds lighting the lamp with a minute remaining, scoring a goal that looked like they were putting on a passing clinic against 5 year olds. That’s never good.
Not a whole lot happened in the second period and shortly into the third period, Shane Weber netted one from the blue line and deflated the Ducks’ morale and will to launch a come back, it appears. Perry took a bad slashing penalty against Tootoo, inciting a fight between Geoffrion and Belleskey and with about six minutes remaining in the game, there were three Ducks hanging out in the sin bin during back to back power plays. The Ducks made it out of the game with only three goals scored against them.
So far this trip, the Ducks have lost two (one in shoot outs), and won one. In the Ducks shoot out loss to the Blackhawks, Selanne had a goal, an assist, and was the only Duck to score in the shootout at the United Center. Getzlaf also tallied one during regulation. In their win against the Wild, Selanne notched three more helpers, while Corey Perry and Getzlaf both scored on power play goals with Bobby Ryan scoring as well.
Next stop for the Ducks is at Nationwide Arena to meet up with the Columbus Blue Jackets for the first time this season on the night before Halloween, followed by away games again the Capitals, Rangers, and Red Wings, before heading home to host Nashville on 11/9/11.
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Written by KARLY TAMBARA