Ducks’ season takes another turn for the worse
It said something about the Ducks’ state, and the downward spiral of their game, that one of the bigger cheers came when the outcome of a game in St. Louis flashed on the scoreboard in the third period.
The Kings lost by a goal. And not much later, so did the Ducks, blowing a third-period lead and wasting a vintage performance from Teemu Selanne, who scored twice.
Misery loves company, and there is plenty to go around in a cratering season of futility as the Columbus Blue Jackets, last in the league, beat the Ducks, 3-2, in overtime on Friday night at Honda Center. Winger Derick Brassard scored the winning goal 3 minutes 55 seconds into overtime, the second of his two goals.
Center Jeff Carter, who had been out since separating a shoulder at Honda Center on Jan. 8, scored the tying goal early in the third period for the Blue Jackets.
The Ducks losing games is hardly new. But this represented the official evaporation of the Ducks’ pre-All Star break momentum.
They are 1-1-1 since the break. The Blue Jackets ended a six-game losing streak and waited for the Ducks to self-destruct.
“It’s devastating,” Ducks defenseman Cam Fowler said. “We need these points right now and it’s tough. … A couple of mistakes cost us.”
One was Fowler’s. He got caught deep in the offensive zone and lost the puck to Brassard. Brassard put on a burst of speed, creating a two-on-one with Rick Nash.
Brassard, from the left circle, finished the individual effort and beat Ducks goalie Jonas Hiller with a slap shot.
“I was trying to get in and just create some offense down low,” Fowler said. “[Koivu] made a good play to get it to me. I thought I had a little bit more time than I did. The guy made a good play and got ahead of me.
“It’s up to me to know my surroundings. It’s one minute left in the game and just too high risk. It’s just a mistake on my part.”
Fowler said Brassard came in on his blind side along the wall.
“I feel terrible, give up a two-on-one like that,” Fowler said. “It’s unacceptable. What are you going to do?”
Said Ducks Coach Bruce Boudreau: “I thought it was a sloppy game. But we make a dumb mistake at the end, get outmuscled and it cost us.”
The failure to grab two points overshadowed the two-goal performance from the energized Selanne. He scored once in the first period and added a power-play goal in the second, for his 654th and 655th career goals.
“We needed the two points. We got one. You can’t be happy with that,” Selanne said. “It’s a little frustrating. We just couldn’t do it.”
Selanne spoke about the shortcomings on the power play, despite the goal. The Ducks were one for four and Boudreau was openly frustrated by his top unit.
“I told them before they scored the goal, ‘I don’t know why I’m putting you guys back out there,’” Boudreau said. “I must be a fool for punishment.”
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