A rare season-opening four-game homestand continues as the Ducks (1-0-0, 2 points) host the visiting Philadelphia Flyers (1-1-0, 2 points) tonight at Honda Center. Puck drop is scheduled for just after 7:05 p.m. PT on Prime Ticket (TV) and AM 830 (radio).
The Ducks are coming off a 5-4 comeback victory two nights ago vs. the Arizona Coyotes, marking their largest deficit overcome to win a season opener in franchise history. At one point, the Ducks were down 4-1 midway through the second period until Corey Perry and Ondrej Kase tallied consecutive goals 31 seconds apart to bring them within one. Andrew Cogliano tied the game with under seven minutes remaining in the third period and Rickard Rakell scored the eventual game-winning goal with 3:30 left on the clock to give the Ducks their first comeback of three goals or more (of any kind) since March 31, 2014 vs. Winnipeg. It also marked the first victory from a three-goal deficit in regulation since March 22, 2006 vs. Colorado.
"We did some good things at the end of the game and the last half," said Cogliano. "Getting a win is a big difference. It's a good feeling after being down 4-1. We should feel confident. We're playing a really good team tonight. They're fast and upbeat. It's going to force us to skate."
Tonight marks the finale of a three-game California trip for the Flyers, who split back-to-back games at San Jose (5-3 win) and Los Angeles (2-0 loss) on Wednesday and Thursday, respectively. Three players had three-point nights for the Flyers in their season-opening victory over the Sharks, including rugged power forward Wayne Simmonds, who recorded the first hat trick in a season opener in franchise history. Right wing Jakub Voracek and defenseman Shayne Gostisbehere had three assists apiece. Goaltenders Brian Elliott and Michal Neuvirth started the first and second games, respectively.
"The one thing you notice that stands out is the mobility of their back-end," Ducks head coach Randy Carlyle said to reporters earlier today. "Gostisbehere is a special player. [Ivan] Provorov seems to have a comfort zone playing that game. They've got some young kids who can move up and down the ice. They've got the right mix. They're a confident group."
For what it's worth, the Ducks have won a club-record eight straight over the Flyers and have not lost to Philly in regulation since the 2007-08 season. The Ducks have gone 11-0-2 since then, and hold a 17-8-7 mark in the all-time season series. Anaheim enters tonight's matchup with a four-game home winning streak against the Flyers dating to Jan. 30, 2014, another franchise first. These clubs will conclude the two-game season series at Wells Fargo Center on October 24.
Don't expect any of the injured Ducks to play in tonight's game, at least according to Carlyle. That means the team will be without the services of a handful of key players, including captain Ryan Getzlaf, right wing Patrick Eaves and goaltender Ryan Miller. The Ducks recalled left wing Giovanni Fiore prior to the season opener, so we'll see if he makes his NHL debut tonight.
Video: The Ducks look ahead to the matchup with Philly