So far it has been a bi-polar pre-season for the Ducks. Win one by a landslide. Lose one by a landslide. Win a close one.
The Ducks did bounce back nicely after being trolloped by the Kings on Tuesday. They were able to defeat the Colorado Avalanche, 2-1, in Denver.
It was Patrick Roy's debut as a coach for his former Avalanche team. Even though Paul Stastny scored late in the first, the Ducks were able to rally back with a goal from Devante Smith-Pelly and the game winner from Hampus Lindholm with about six minutes left in the game.
Goaltender John Gibson was a huge component of the Ducks win. While he let in three goals on eight shots against LA, he stopped all 18 shots in 30 minutes of play.
“Gibson was supposed to go in halfway through the game, and there was a whistle at 10:31,” said a pleased coach, Bruce Boudreau. “I was waiting until after the 10-minute mark to put him in there. But he was out the door, he was that anxious to get in the net. He was like, I’m gonna redeem myself. And he did. He played very, very well.”
After playing three games in a row, Boudreau was happy to give his players a day off on Thursday. The majority of them, including veterans, would have none of that and showed up on ice to workout anyway.
However, Luca Sbisa was missing. He tweaked his ankle in the game against Phoenix on Monday night and will be out for two weeks. Reason? They don't want the injury to linger into the regular season, which begins October 2.
In other notes:
After three games, more roster cuts have been made. All of the following players have been assigned to the Ducks minor league affiliate in Norfolk.
Max Friberg – Center/Left Wing
Kevin Gagne – Defenseman
Antoine Laganiere – Center
John Mitchell – Left Wing
Andrew O’Brien – Defenseman
Charlie Sarault – Center
Zack Stortini – Right Wing
Chris Wagner – Center/Right Wing
Stefan Warg – Defenseman
Steven Whitney – Center/Right Wing
Maxime Sauve – Left Wing
Teigan Zahn – Defenseman
There are still plenty of cuts to be made. Three goalies have to go. At least half the defensemen left on the training camp roster, as well as another eight or nine forwards. As usual, the last ones will be the toughest to make.