Mighty Ducks-Wild Preview
GAME: Anaheim Mighty Ducks (28-33-10-8) at Minnesota Wild (26-28-20-3).
TIME: Sunday, 4 p.m. EST.
This has been a disappointing season for Jean-Sebastien Giguere and the
Anaheim Mighty Ducks - except when they've faced the Minnesota Wild.
Giguere looks to continue his dominance of the Wild when a pair of
non-playoff teams move closer to the end of their seasons.
Big things were expected from Giguere this season after he led the Mighty
Ducks to within one victory of a Stanley Cup in June, then signed a four-year,
$19.5 million contract in the offseason. Giguere, however, got off to a slow
start and was never able to regain the form that won him the Conn Smythe Trophy
as playoff MVP.
His disappointing play is one of the biggest reasons why Anaheim will be the
fifth team in league history not to make the playoffs after reaching the
Stanley Cup final the previous season.
Giguere, though, has been able to continue his strong play against the Wild.
He is 1-0-1 with a .981 save percentage in two games against Minnesota this
season after recording three consecutive shutouts against them in the 2002-03
Western Conference finals.
Giguere has surrendered four goals in his last eight games against the Wild.
Anaheim is unbeaten in the last seven meetings (6-0-1), including playoffs,
Petr Sykora scored Anaheim's lone goal in a 3-1 loss at Columbus on Friday.
The Wild, also eliminated from playoff contention, are coming off the best
offensive performance in franchise history - an 8-2 victory at Chicago on
Alexandre Daigle scored twice and Pascal Dupuis returned from an ankle
injury to contribute four assists for Minnesota, which has points in nine of 11
"It was fun out there," Dupuis said. "It's always fun when you can help
your team win a game."
The eight goals Thursday set a franchise record, besting the previous mark
set in a 7-4 win over Chicago on Jan. 7.
The Wild will finish their season without all-star defenseman Filip Kuba,
who sustained a broken right index finger when he was slashed by Chicago's
Scott Nichol on Thursday.
STANDINGS (through March 26): Mighty Ducks - 74 points, 4th place, 24 PB,
Pacific Division. Wild - 75 points, 5th place, 19 PB, Northwest Division.
TEAM LEADERS: Mighty Ducks - Sergei Fedorov, 30 goals and 64 points; Fedorov
and Vaclav Prospal, 34 assists; Garrett Burnett, 153 PIM. Wild - Daigle, 16
goals; Andrew Brunette, 31 assists and 46 points; Matt Johnson, 175 PIM.
SPECIAL TEAMS (through March 26): Mighty Ducks - Power play: 17.7 percent
(53 for 299), 9th in NHL. Penalty killing: 84.2 percent (287 for 341), 16th.
Wild - Power play: 13.0 percent (41 for 316), 28th. Penalty killing: 84.1
percent (227 for 271), 14th.
GOALTENDERS: Mighty Ducks - Giguere (16-30-6, 3 SO, 2.66 GAA); Martin Gerber
(11-11-4, 2, 2.27). Wild - Dwayne Roloson (16-18-11, 4, 1.89); Manny Fernandez
(10-13-9, 2, 2.43).
SEASON SERIES: Mighty Ducks, 2-0-1.
LAST MEETING: March 3; Mighty Ducks, 2-0. At Anaheim, Calif., Samuel
Pahlsson had the first two-goal game of his career and Giguere stopped 28 shots
to lead the Ducks.
ROAD/HOME RECORDS: Mighty Ducks - 10-23-3-4 on the road; Wild - 15-13-7-2 at