It's only pre-season and the points don't matter, but nonetheless a 6-2 victory over the Phoenix Coyotes felt good.
To be fair to Phoenix, it was their third game in three nights and the rosters were definitely a bit lopsided in Anaheim's favor. Still, a win is a win and those on the Ducks roster who were expected to make an impact did.
Teemu Selanne, who usually gets to sit out the first couple of pre-season romps, was inserted into the line-up and scored just :48 seconds into the game. Jakob Silfverberg, 22, who had been playing with Selanne all during training camp, continued his positive chemistry with the 43 year old veteran.
"You can see right away, he can see the game so well," said Selanne. "So if you get open, the puck is going to come. Same with him. He has a great shot, and we tried to feed each other. Every day is a process."
If these two can continue throughout the regular season, Selanne will definitely go over the 700 goals mark.
Sami Vatanen and Nolan Yonkman made it 3-0 in the first three minutes on the first three shots of the game. Goaltender Mark Visentin and his Phoenix teammates never recovered from that. Daniel Winnik just added to the Coyotes woes to give the Ducks a 4-0 lead by the end of the first period.
Guillaume Latendresse finally got a puck past Jonas Hiller at 5:13 of the second period, but that was all that Hiller would yield, making 12 saves in two periods of play.
Frederik Andersen took over in the third period, yielding a single goal to Chris Brown late in the game. By then, Hampus Lindholm and Emerson Etem had added to the Ducks tally and 6-2 was the way things finished.
"It’s still preseason, and the first game, but I thought we did what they asked us to do, in terms of systems and what we’ve learned in camp," said Andrew Cogliano, who had three assists on the night. "I thought it was a good start, especially because we play tomorrow against L.A."
The Kings will be raring to go against the Ducks (when aren't they?). Los Angeles was swept by Phoenix in the first two games of the pre-season, so they have a lot to prove (and improve). If the Ducks can beat the Kings, it will go a long way to building confidence towards the regular season.