Ducks center Ryan Getzlaf hasn’t had to do laundry yet, but that day is near as the longest trip of the season reaches its halfway point.
“I’ll do laundry in Washington,” Getzlaf said, considering the Ducks play the Capitals on Saturday after Thursday night’s game in Buffalo.
Getzlaf almost chuckled. It was a light moment in an otherwise frustrating point of the season — an off day in Buffalo, N.Y., and the Ducks saddled with a three-game losing streak. But he spoke with the assurance of a veteran who has been through this wringer and knows the Ducks will eventually come out clean.
The Ducks are 0-2-1 on their six-game trip. They’ve scored four goals in losing three straight for the first time since Dec. 20-27. All that despite playing some strong hockey that was nullified by good goaltending, the latest being a 43-save game by Henrik Lundqvist of the New York Rangers on Tuesday.
“You’re always going to have points in a year when things don’t go your way,” Getzlaf said. “That’s the natural progression. There’s going to be times when you win games that you’re not supposed to. You have to have belief in your system.
“I’m pretty pleased at how we played, fought and battled. We basically slowed down a fast-skating team but gave up too many quality scoring chances. Overall, I think our game is where we want it to be.”
Another bright spot is that rookie defenseman Brandon Montour continues to impress with injured Sami Vatanen unavailable. Vatanen did not skate Wednesday. .
Getzlaf was recently one of many NHL players that used rainbow-colored “Pride Tape” on his stick to support the You Can Play organization for the inclusion of LGBT athletes in sports. It was part of an online fundraiser for You Can Play and the Institute for Sexual Minority Studies and Services at the University of Alberta. Kings goaltending coach Bill Ranford is among backers of the campaign.
“We have a responsibility to show the world, as role models, that we can adapt in any situation and be friendly and be available for everybody,” Getzlaf said.
Both local teams are involved. Ryan Kesler is the Ducks’ ambassador for You Can Play, as is Dustin Brown for the Kings.
“The world’s changing and everything’s going in the direction where’s it’s acceptable to be free and be who you are,” Getzlaf said.
When: 4 p.m. PST Thursday.
On the air: TV: Prime Ticket; Radio: 830.
Update: Kyle Okposo leads Buffalo in scoring after he spent the first nine years of his career with the New York Islanders. Half of his 34 points are on the NHL’s third-ranked power play. The Sabres are 6-0-1 in their past seven home games. … The next victory for Ducks goaltender John Gibson will be his 21st, which would match last season’s career high. … Anaheim will close its six-game trip in Minnesota on Tuesday.