NHL.com is providing in-depth analysis for each of its 31 teams throughout August. Today, three key statistics for the Anaheim Ducks.
[Ducks 31 IN 31: Season preview | 3 Questions | Top prospects | Fantasy breakdown]
1. Games played
Only one skater on the Ducks (Adam Henrique) played a full 82-game schedule last season. Top point producers from 2017-18 Ryan Getzlaf and Rickard Rakell missed a combined 28 games, and starting goalie John Gibson missed 24 games. Defenseman Cam Fowler, who skates in their top four, has missed 38 games over the past two seasons. This led to Getzlaf being their top point producer with 48 points (14 goals, 34 assists) in 67 games. This was the second-fewest number of points to lead a team behind forward Clayton Keller of the Arizona Coyotes (47). To compete in a top-heavy Pacific Division, the Ducks will need their best players to stay healthy to maximize their goal-scoring output.
Video: 31 in 31: Anaheim Ducks 2019-20 season preview
2. Shot volume
The Ducks finished last in the NHL averaging 27.7 shots per game last season. They didn't do much better in shot attempts, with a differential of minus-362, which ranked 27th. Right wing Ondrej Kase led the Ducks with a plus-101 SAT but missed 52 games. Fowler, who skated the second-most minutes per game on the Ducks (23:22), was last in SAT (minus-205), signifying opponents controlled possession and outshot the Ducks when he was on the ice. Coach Dallas Eakins, who was hired June 17, will try to install a more up-tempo offense that can generate higher shot volumes. Two teams made the Stanley Cup Playoffs after finishing in the bottom 10 in shot attempt differential last season (Dallas Stars, New York Islanders).
3. Power-play goals
The Ducks were tied for last in power-play goals scored at home (16) with the Montreal Canadiens, New York Islanders and Detroit Red Wings. A contributing factor was injuries. Getzlaf has one power-play goal over the past two seasons, Rakell has combined for 14 over the same span, and Henrique has 12. It's clear the Ducks need to find an additional trigger-man on the power play, and either Kase or Daniel Sprong could fit that role. Kase tied for 27th in goals per 60 minutes over the past two seasons (1.34) with Leon Draisaitl of the Edmonton Oilers and could thrive with a bigger special teams role. Sprong finished second on the Ducks behind Kase in goals per 60 last season (1.36) but was 18th in power-play time on ice per game (1:18) among Ducks skaters.
Video: Top five plays of 2018-19: Getzlaf
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