ANAHEIM – Here’s what you need to know about the Ducks’ 6-3 win over the New York Rangers on Sunday night:
THE GAME IN 140 OR LESS
– The Ducks traded punches with the Rangers for two big-play periods before landing two big blows in the third that ultimately felled them.
– “It did. I knew him before he got here and I knew the type of person and player he was. And I knew he was going to be good for this team.” – Ducks center Ryan Kesler, on impact of acquiring Patrick Eaves
– Ryan Getzlaf. The big center continues to be a dominant player in the Ducks’ push toward what could be a fifth straight Pacific Division title. His seventh four-assist game is his first since Nov. 24, 2015 against Calgary, a night where he had five helpers that tied his career high.
– The game-winning goal in the third period was a smartly executed faceoff play between linemates as Ryan Kesler would control a faceoff with the Rangers’ Derek Stepan, shooting the puck forward and forcing goalie Henrik Lundqvist to make a play on. Lundqvist spat a rebound back out to the slot area and Andrew Cogliano, reading the play correctly, quickly beat two New York defenders to the puck and put it in for a 4-3 lead. Honorable mention is Getzlaf’s strip of Michael Grabner on the backcheck to lead a fast break and tic-tac-toe play that ended in Patrick Eaves’s second goal of the night.
– It is hard to imagine what has taken place over the span of two weeks. San Jose had a nine-point lead over the Ducks and Calgary after beating Buffalo at home. The Pacific Division race appeared to be over, with the Ducks, Calgary and Edmonton left to jockey for the second and third guaranteed playoff positions. Everything is up for grabs now as the Sharks have lost six straight since – all of them in regulation, including one at home to the Ducks. Pair that with the Ducks on their best run all season and you have the possibility of a fifth…