The Mighty Ducks of Anaheim will take on the Coyotes in Phoenix on Saturday night as they return to the ice after a five-day break. The Ducks return home on Sunday evening, November 13th at 5:00pm to battle the Dallas Stars at the Pond.
At practice this week, Ducks Head Coach Randy Carlyle looked back at the team’s first sixteen games of the season.
“You are never happy as a coach, because you haven’t won every game,” said Carlyle. “I think the one thing that we have proven we can do is play the game at a high pace. And I think that’s the required element that you have to have to have success. We have gone through a rash of injuries and other players have gone in and played and picked up slack. They have played key roles in helping us through those stretches. Now the test will be, if we can get better with everyone healthy. That’s what we are going to push for. We are going to continually push to get better.”
“There are some areas that we can expect more out of ourselves,” said Carlyle. “One is the competitiveness for the puck. Winning a lot more battles and continue to be a physical fore checking hockey club. I think those are the things we really have to work on. We need to have the understanding that it takes a more competitive effort, night in and night out from our group.”
The Ducks will play the Coyotes for the third time this season on Saturday night, having won both previous meetings.
On October 23rd in Anaheim, the Ducks defeated Phoenix, 5-3. Petr Sykora, Teemu Selanne, Andy McDonald, Jonathon Hedstrom and Rob Niedermayer scored for the Ducks. Both teams tallied twice on special teams with Hedstrom scoring his first NHL goal with Anaheim playing shorthanded.
The next meeting took place on Sunday, October 30th at the Pond. Again, the Ducks were victorious by a score of 3-2. Andy McDonald put two goals behind Coyotes goaltender David Leneveu and Selanne scored his ninth goal of the season to lead the Ducks attack.
This will be the third of eight meetings between the two teams and the first in Phoenix.
On Sunday, it’s the Ducks and Dallas Stars in the first of eight games between the Pacific Division rivals this season.
The Mighty Ducks went 2-2-2-0 versus Dallas in the 2003-2004 season series.
Sergei Fedorov has 70 points in his career against the Stars, while Selanne has scored 48 points in 54 games played over the years against them.
While the Ducks play in Phoenix on Saturday night, Dallas visits San Jose. So, both teams are in action the night before they compete in Anaheim.
After this weekend, the Ducks host Dallas again on Wednesday night, November 16th at 7:30pm at the Pond. That contest will be followed by a visit from the Colorado Avalanche on Friday, November 18th at 7:30pm and the Vancouver Canucks on Sunday afternoon, November 20th at 1:00pm.