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What we learned from the Ducks' 4-2 victory over the Dallas Stars

Coach Bruce Boudreau pulled out the “day-to-day” response when asked if the Ducks were building something, with four goals scored in each of their last two games and a 7-2-1 mark in their last 10.

“In this league, it can turn on a dime,” Boudreau said. “We just have to stay in the moment.”

But Friday's 4-2 win against Dallas again showed that they are a tough matchup when their offense supports their defense.

Here’s what we learned:

The blue line is contributing

The Ducks went into this week with 14 goals from their defensemen for the season. They have gotten three goals from defensemen in the past two games with Shea Theodore, Sami Vatanen and Hampus Lindholm finding the back of the net.

“It’s huge because we’re used to getting big contributions from them,” Boudreau said. “It’s more difficult when you don’t get those points from the defense. That means there’s a disconnect between the defense and the forwards … when they start scoring you know you’re playing the game right.”

Ryan Kesler’s line is coming alive

It gets lost in the statistics, but the line of Kesler, Carl Hagelin and Jakob Silfverberg has done a bang-up job matched against the opponent’s top lines this season. Now their offense is seeing some rewards. They combined for a goal and three assists and nine shots.

“I’ve always kind of said I think our line is very good defensively, but I think we have the skills to score some goals, too,” Silfverberg said. “Lately we’ve been trying to find some opportunities at putting some pucks in the net, and I feel like this is a step in the right direction. And if we keep playing like this, we’re going to be a dangerous line.”

A fast start was needed against slumping Dallas

If there’s a caveat to the win, it’s that the Stars are winless in six straight road games and have scored just six goals in their last four games. But Dallas had five days off to regroup, and their high-powered offense couldn’t make up a 4-0 deficit.

“They came out pretty hard, and we just played stupid hockey,” Dallas left wing Jamie Benn said.

Copyright © 2016, Los Angeles Times
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