DFR Recap (Game 20)
Ducks at Golden Knights
This sucks. Everything about this freaking sucks. We play our best game of the season on Monday against the Predators and earn a shoot-out win. Everyone was pretty good and while Gibson did bail us out a couple times, it wasn’t all on him. So, hopes were high (at least for me) coming into a road game against the mildly struggling Vegas Golden Knights. I was expecting a carry-over from last game with more strong play. What we got was garbage. Literal garbage. Like most of you I saw on twitter, I am pissed off. We still have a talented team with some key injuries but there is no reason we should be this bad and this inconsistent.
So, let’s take some time to vent about who is making me pull my hair out and then move into some optimism about the future (that part will be short…)
That Ain’t It, Fam:
Bad pinches in the offensive zone and just overall poor play in the defensive zone lead to his -2 rating last night and it didn’t look any better than it sounds. I refuse to believe the all of the sudden Manson is not a good defenseman, so what’s up? He has shown signs of his old self this season but I think Manson needs to get back to his hard hitting, strong on the puck self if the Ducks want to turn this around.
Not that it was a terrible game but if you blatantly score on your own net you’re going to end up in the bad section of these blogs. Now hockey is a fast game and the puck bounces weird ways but you can’t have the puck go in like you meant to shoot it in your own net.
What the Hell Are You Doing?
Randy Carlyle / Bob Murray
I am usually not on the “blame the coach/GM” train when my teams are bad, but I don’t think there is another option at this point. This is a talented team that should not be where they are. Most of my beef here is with Bob because let’s be honest, we all knew what we were getting with Randy. Randy is randy and that is not a problem, it is who he is. Don’t get me wrong, I think he needs to go but I think this is more on GMBM. So let’s pen and open letter to Ducks’ general manager, Bob Murray.
Last season we were 2nd in the Pacific Division despite dealing with significant injuries all year. We were a decent team playing a dump and chase, grind them down style of play. After getting swept by the Sharks you came out and said we are going to be faster next season and that got us fans excited! But you can’t just tell an older, heavier team to just “play fast”. You need to support them with fast players and that is something YOU DID NOT DO. Which leads me to my question, why change our style when it was working? I know the NHL is a speed game now and you have to adapt but if you don’t have the speed to keep up you need to play the style that best fits the players (and coach) that we have. It’s like looking at turtle and wondering why it isn’t a rabbit.
I look forward to your response.
Ducks Fan Report
Reasons to Believe:
Damn he has looked strong this season. For a team that is playing inconsistent at best, he has been a constant bright spot up front. He is make skilled plays with the puck. I mean, we all saw those great skate to stick highlights they showed on NBCSN last night. I kid. But seriously he is making the right passes and is even shooting the puck when he is in a good scoring area unlike years past. If we can get out of this Getzlaf will be the one to lead us there.
“Gib Him the Vezina” has never seemed more realistic than this season. Hell, he even has a shot at the Hart in my opinion. He is obviously the only reason we have 8 wins (add Miller to this for his 2 strong wins) and until this team can snap out of it we will need him to keep it up. Last night was obviously a mercy / wake the heck up pull from Carlyle because none of those 3 goals were even close to his fault. He’s an absolute beauty and I am so happy we locked him up long term before this train wreck that is the start to the 2018 season.
This is still a skilled team that is underperforming. Obviously, a lot of that is on the coach/GM but part of it is still on the players. We are too good to be this inconsistent. The Ducks need to pick themselves up of the Ice and continue to battle and get through this bad stretch. This season isn’t over and I still believe in them. But something needs to change and quick.