Ducks come up short again in shootout
Another point slipped away from the Ducks in a shootout Sunday. The struggle is to keep their confidence and determination from slipping away too.
The 4-3 loss to the Ottawa Senators at the Honda Center was their second shootout defeat in three days and the fourth one-goal loss in five games.
All it amounts to is close, but still sitting in last place in the Western Conference.
“It’s desperation for us right now,” said Corey Perry, who had a goal and an assist but missed the net in the shootout.
“We have to put something together and go on a run here or we’re going to be out of it pretty soon.”
Alex Kovalev and Daniel Alfredsson scored for Ottawa in the shootout and Ryan Getzlaf converted for the Ducks before Joffrey Lupul shot wide on the final attempt.
The Ducks fell to 2-4 in shootouts this season, but both winners came off the stick of Teemu Selanne, who is out at least four weeks after breaking his hand Thursday.
“It’s tough on everybody,” Coach Randy Carlyle said. “You can’t live and die by everything that goes against you. That’s what the frustrating part is for your group. We battled back, we battled back. We had chances. And then you don’t get it done in the shootout, simple as that.
“These are the tough ones, when you’ve got to pick the group back up tomorrow morning and get ready for Dallas.”
The Ducks were resilient in regulation against Ottawa, answering the three goals within a minute each time.
Jarkko Ruutu gave Ottawa on a 1-0 lead in the first when he cashed in after a turnover at 12:01. But the Ducks responded 15 seconds later when Getzlaf flipped the puck off the glass and it caromed past Ottawa goalie Brian Elliott.
Ottawa took the lead again when Jason Spezza converted a rebound on a power play at 15:17, but the Ducks responded when Lupul scored 31 seconds later.
The Ducks were tied, 2-2, entering the third, but left Filip Kuba wide open in the slot only 1:04 into the period and fell behind again. Fifty seconds later, Perry scored off a backhander from the slot for his 15th goal.
The only time the Ducks didn’t answer, it turned out, was in the shootout.
“The shootout can go either way. It’s a tough thing,” Perry said.
A couple of weeks ago, the ones that could go either way were going the Ducks’ way. Eight of their last 10 games have been one-goal decisions, and one other would have been a one-goal game except for an empty-net goal at the end.
They won three one-goal decisions to emerge from last place in the conference. But the last four, they have lost.
“It’s hard to stay positive when things are not going your way,” said goaltender Jean-Sebastien Giguere, whose hot streak was a key to the earlier run but who has been alternating with Jonas Hiller with each loss.
“It’s a turnover here, it’s a bad goal here. It’s just one play in one game that makes a difference,” Giguere said. “We’ve just got to make that play go our way.”
Defenseman Steve Eminger was a healthy scratch for a third consecutive game, and forward Evgeny Artyukhin, who has displeased Carlyle by committing penalties in the offensive zone, was scratched for the second straight game. . . . Ottawa, which hadn’t defeated the Ducks since the teams met in the 2007 Stanley Cup finals when Anaheim won the Cup, ended a winless trip with a victory.