Ducks 3 vs. Capitals 2
Dec. 23, 2013
27-7-5, 59 Standings Points
The NHL-leading Anaheim Ducks extending their franchise-best winning streak to nine games with a 3-2 win over the Washington Capitals at Verizon Center. The last NHL team to win nine straight games was Pittsburgh, which won 15 in a row from Mar. 2-30, 2013. Anaheim’s standings point streak now sits at 12 games, the league’s longest since the Penguins’ 15-game streak (15-0-0) last March. At 26-7-5, this marks the Ducks’ second-best start in franchise history (2006-07, 27-5-6).
On the road, the Ducks have won six straight games to match the longest such streak in the NHL this season and are now only one shy of the franchise record (7, Nov. 28-Dec. 13, 2006). In addition, Anaheim is riding a seven-game road point streak (6-0-1), one game shy of the club record of eight set from Nov. 22-Dec. 13, 2006 (7-0-1).
With wins in Detroit, New Jersey, New York (Islanders) and Washington, the Ducks swept a road trip of four games-or-more for the fourth time in club history...the previous three occasions were Feb. 5-13, 2011 (4-0-0 through COL/VAN/CGY/EDM), Oct. 21-27, 2008 (4-0-0 through TOR/OTT/MTL/CBJ) and Nov. 19-24, 1993 (4-0-0 through VAN/EDM/CGY/WPG) .
In addition to being 16-3-4 when scoring the first goal, the Ducks are now 11-4-1 when their opponent scores first, the best mark in the league. Only two other NHL teams are over .500 when allowing the first goal - San Jose (7-6-1) and Vancouver (9-8-3).
On his game-winning goal
Getzlaf and those guys went hard to the net and the puck was bouncing right up the middle. I got the puck on my stick and tried to make a quick move to get away from my forward. I got the puck on net, I saw it go in, and it was a pretty good feeling. It’s a huge goal and it’s fun for Bruce and those guys coming here and winning against their old team. It was a blast. And now we come home and celebrate Christmas with nine straight wins. It’s great.
On the nine-game winning streak
We find ways to win instead of ways to lose. We have a good team here and we know we can turn it around in games. We believe in the way Bruce wants us to play.
On returning to the lineup after not playing on Saturday
As a young guy, you always want to play. But this just makes me realize how fun it is to be in the lineup. I’m just going to working hard to hopefully stay in the lineup. I don’t blame him for doing it. I’m young and I need rest, too.
On if the team wants a break in the schedule
Yes and no. On one hand, you wish things would keep going because we’re definitely on a roll and feeling good about ourselves. But at the same time, it’s been a rough schedule for us since the beginning of the year. A lot of games on the road. Everybody is kind of happy to get a few days at home and be able to rest a little bit.
On setting a goal to get to the Christmas break on a winning note
You always want to win the next game. It definitely wasn’t easy. But at the same time, we knew that if you can get through this pretty good, we’re going to have a pretty good chance at doing well this season. But at the same time, we have to keep going and working hard. That’s what has made the difference so far. We need to do the same thing during the second half, even though the schedule might be a little easier. You can’t take anything lightly.
Head coach Bruce Boudreau
On entering the Christmas break with a nine-game winning streak
It was a goal of ours, long before we got to this game, to win the four games going into Christmas. We thought it would be a heck of a start, considering 24 of those games are on the road. We gutted out a couple of them, especially the last two.
On how he felt at the beginning of the game
I was as nervous as I’ll get. It just looked different. I don’t think I made eye contact with one player all night long because I couldn’t. I was worried they might give me a pout or something [laughs]. I thought our guys were really good after the first 10 minutes. I think they were trying hard for the guys who were in Washington, like Bob and myself. I think they were a little nervous at the beginning. But once we got our legs going, I thought we shut them down pretty good, except for that almost-goal at the end.
On how satisfying this win was for him
In the whole scheme of things, I’m happier that we kept the streak alive. 59 points after 39 games is a pretty cool feat for what we’ve gone through. The players deserve all the credit. It was nice in front of the crowd here. There was a lot of red out there.