SAN JOSE, CA — The Anaheim Ducks had their collective backs against the wall going into Monday’s Game 3, down two games to none, in the first round of the NHL playoffs, best-of-seven series.
The Ducks kept it close for the first 20 minutes, with Brandon Montour setting up a beautiful fake shot from the point and hard pass to Rickard Rakell who tied the score with a one-timer at 1-1 at 13:40. A four-goal second period and a three-goal third for the Sharks pretty well told the story as the Ducks were not much more than a snack for the Ducks who lost Game 3, 8-1.
It could all be over Tuesday night in Game 4 in a game that will miss our deadline.
Coach Randy Carlyle saw a much better effort from his Ducks in Game 2’s 3-2 lose than saw in the first game, which they lost 3-0 to the San Jose Sharks, Saturday night in Anaheim.
It was a game where Brandon Montour was one of the most dangerous Ducks especially in the third period. Down by one goal Carlyle turned to Montour giving him a green light to leave his defensive position and use his speed and his cannon-like shot when the opportunity presents itself.
It was a good decision and Montour responded accordingly. Although he did not score, he had a number of great scoring chances forcing Sharks goalie Martin Jones to make some tremendous saves, adding a lot of wind in the sails of the Ducks. But it wasn’t enough to make the difference.
“We need to put out on every shift,” said Montour. “We worked hard tonight but it just didn’t go right.”
Coming so close to tying the game several times, Montour is not disheartened.
“They gotta win four, right,” he asked reporters following the game.
Even so, coach Carlyle could see a great deal of improvement from Game 1, but the Sharks are circling and they’re hungry.
One thing that will be adjusted before Game 3 will be the break out of their own zone and the centre ice zone, which they have been having trouble with against San Jose.
“We are just taking too long to get through the centre zone,” says Carlyle.
The Ducks are getting tremendous goaltending from John Gibson who stole several sure goals from the Sharks.