Third game in a row where the team that plays the Ducks has played the Kings the night before. Third game in a row, where the supposedly “tired” opponent does not go down easily. Especially when being beaten the night before.
Minnesota was not happy about losing to the Kings and took it out on the lowly and uninspired Ducks, who have now lost seven of their past eight games. They nearly lost eight of eight to Vancouver, but held on, barely, in the 4-3 victory on Friday.
Victory? What is that? It is beginning to feel a lot like the team that played in the 90’s. You were just happy when they got a win every few games or so. No expectations, because you knew the team was bad, but you loved them nonetheless and showed up because you were a diehard fan.
The problem is that Anaheim has won something known as the Stanley Cup. And when you win the Cup, and visit the playoffs on a regular basis, the expectations are different. It is no longer ok to be a so-so team. Fans want to keep the level of superiority up.
Fans have been sorely disappointed of late.
The Minnesota game did not help matters, as once again the Ducks dug themselves a hole and could not find their way out of it.
Anaheim started off the game well, got an early power play and seemed to be sniffing for a goal right at the doorstep. Nothing went in, but they were getting good chances. Then the power play was over and it went downhill from there.
Kyle Brodziak tipped in Darryl Powe’s shot at 6:09 and any momentum the Ducks had early on just vanished. Matt Cullen made it 2-0 at 16:11 and the Wild struck again with Jared Spurgeon making it 3-0 at 19:31.
Always one to enjoy a good train wreck (I was one of those diehards in the 90’s), I continued to watch the game, rather than turn off what seemed inevitable.
Cam Fowler gave the Ducks a wee little bit of life by getting his first of the year at 2:15 of the second period. The post was Niklas Backstrom’s best friend, though, as the Ducks seemed to be aiming at the pipes and not between the pipes.
Unable to get anything IN the net, the Ducks pulled Dan Ellis, who got to take over for Jonas Hiller from the second period forward. Fowler got goal number two of the game with :49 seconds left, but were unable to tie up the game.
Bobby Ryan, who is always honest and forthright in his assessments, was accurate as always in his assessment of how the Ducks are playing.
“You try to put your finger on it and you do different things to prepare. We’ve taken different approaches and nothing has worked. 25 guys in the room got to say enough is enough and that hasn’t happened yet. It’s been embarrassing.”
It’s been embarrassing to the team, but equally embarrassing to fans. Forget Occupy Honda Center. How about paper bags over the head?
Wednesday and Thursday the Ducks get to take on the Kings in the beginning rounds of the Freeway Faceoff.
“We should be going into those two games like a Stanley Cup Game 7,” was Fowler’s opinion.
How about going into those games like your very livelihood depends on it? How about going into those games with the attitude that a poor start won’t cut it? How about going into those games with everyone on the same page, with the same goal and the same attitude? How about going into those games ready from the time the first puck drops and staying ready for an entire 60 minutes?
The season cannot possibly continue like this, but then again, maybe it could. Those brown paper bags are looking better and better.