Getting scoring from many sources and being able to roll four lines have been key factors in the
They don’t have a stud defenseman like Minnesota’s
Francois Beauchemin leads the Ducks’ defensemen with an average ice time of 23:01, which ranked 30th in the NHL through Monday’s games. He’s followed by his defense partner, Hampus Lindholm (20:52), and then
“I think it’s a reflection of the depth,” Coach
"All year we pretty well rolled six defensemen and very rarely will we get into a situation where two [defensemen] have to play 27 minutes or anything, unless somebody gets hurt during the course of a game."
He credited assistant coach Trent Yawney for creating a balanced allotment of playing time that should help keep everyone fresh. "He's done a great job with that as far as keeping everybody that plays in that situation possible," Boudreau said. "Now, we've been reaping the benefits so far in the playoffs."
Stoner, who's averaging 30 seconds more per game in the playoffs than during the season, has compiled a +5 defensive rating, second among the Ducks.
"It's a credit to the team, the way we play and the defensemen we have on the team," he said of the distribution of playing time. "We could put in other guys too and the minutes would be just as balanced. It's sure nice to have that depth and the confidence of the coaches to play everybody. If it changes down the stretch, I don't know, but right now everybody's playing with confidence and it's nice to know that the coaches have faith in you. It's fun to see and fun to play, for sure."