Logic would dictate that coach Bruce Boudreau would go back to Jonas Hiller after a win, but Andersen will get his first home start Friday against the Buffalo Sabres. Andersen was recalled from the American Hockey League when Viktor Fasth was injured, and his adjustment to the NHL has been smooth enough that Boudreau is comfortable going back to him.
"We play Vancouver on Sunday, which I want [Hiller] to play, so it seemed like a good spot for a goalie that's undeterred," Boudreau said. "What I mean by that is that there's no letdown I think in his mind because he's still trying to impress to be here."
Andersen, 24, had 47 games of North American pro experience prior to this season, all with Norfolk of the AHL. Top prospect John Gibson was all the rage in training camp, but Andersen has proven to be capable at this level. Among NHL goalies with four or more games, he ranks second with a .952 save percentage and third with a 1.36 goals-against average.
"We all knew he was a good goalie," defenseman Luca Sbisa said. "You hear what he's done in Sweden and he's been good in the minors, but you just never expect a goalie like that to come in and be as good as Freddie is.
"He doesn't do anything too quick. He doesn't bite on the first deke. He's not scrambling. He's pretty calm. One thing that impresses me a lot is his consistency. Usually goalies like that have a great two games and then you kind of dip a bit, but with him it's been a steady progression."
Anaheim took its first day off in more than two weeks Thursday, but Boudreau didn't know how much it will help.
"Some people say they're refreshed, some other people say they looked lazy," Boudreau said. "The proof will be in the pudding [Friday] watching the energy."
Buffalo played Thursday and only a few players skated. Ryan Miller is expected to start in goal.
Here are the projected lineups for the Sabres and Ducks:
Note: Fasth took the ice late in practice and Boudreau said he'll be in "full practice mode" Saturday. Beleskey also skated and Boudreau said he believes he could play on the road trip next week. Koivu has been skating on his own but his return is uncertain.