Ducks after one: Vancouver 2, Ducks 1
In a first period that was equally fascinating and horrifying, the Ducks took the lead for the first time in four games—and quickly surrendered it and fell behind. It wasn’t just the defense that was clueless: forwards who brought home gold, silver and bronze medals from the Olympics played without energy, passion or any willingness to take the body when necessary.
The Canucks took two early penalties and the Ducks capitalized with a five-on-four manpower edge, at 2:41. Ryan Getzlaf took a fine pass from Bobby Ryan and skated in on the right side until he was about 20 feet away from Roberto Luongo before taking a wrist shot that slipped between the goalie’s pads.
Of course, the Ducks were unable to deal with such prosperity. Corey Perry took a penalty for goaltender interference at 3:07 and Vancouver pulled even 50 seconds later. Daniel Sedin took a pass from twin brother Henrik and let loose a sharp-angled shot from the left side on which Jonas Hiller had absolutely no chance.
The Canucks took the lead at 4:14, on their third shot of the game. Manny Malhotra banged the puck off the boards and to defenseman Dan Hamhuis, whose shot was deftly redirected by Raffi Torres and past Hiller as the crowd at the Honda Center groaned.
The Ducks gained a power play at 11:22 but the Canucks had the best scoring chance. Malhotra had a short-handed breakaway that Ryan stopped only by hooking the Canucks forward. The Canucks got a power play out of it but didn’t score.
Vancouver outshot the Ducks, 16-13, a 48-shot pace for the visitors. The most astonishing part of that is that 48 shots against would actually reduce the Ducks’ average of shots against, which stood at 48.3 after their first three games.
More later at www.latimes.com/sports