Sharks-Mighty Ducks Preview
GAME: San Jose Sharks (10-9-10-3) at Anaheim Mighty Ducks (11-12-4-5).
TIME: Sunday, 8 p.m. EST.
Jean-Sebastien Giguere has been looking all season for a game to help him
regain his confidence.
A 38-save shutout over one of the league's top teams should take care of
Giguere looks to put together back-to-back strong performances when the
Anaheim Mighty Ducks host the San Jose Sharks in the opener of a home-and-home
Mired in a personal seven-game winless streak and struggling to display the
form that made him the playoff MVP last season, Giguere had his best game of
the season Friday in a 1-0 victory over visiting Colorado.
Giguere stopped 38 shots -- 32 over the final 40 minutes -- and Sergei Fedorov
scored on the power play in the first period, helping Anaheim move above .500.
Giguere earned his first win since Nov. 16, ending a personal 0-5-2 skid.
The shutout was his first of the season and was just his fifth win in 20
"I felt the best I've felt this year and I was seeing the puck very well,"
Giguere said. "The puck was sticking to me real nice and I was real patient."
Although backup Martin Gerber has played well this season, Giguere's
teammates know they need their top goalie to play well if they are to duplicate
the success that led them to the Stanley Cup finals in 2002-03.
"Jiggy was outstanding for us tonight," Anaheim's Steve Rucchin said.
"You've heard a million times that this game is about confidence. Obviously,
it's a huge step for him, but that's what we've come to expect from him -- and
I'm sure he expects it from himself.
"Hopefully, he can use this as a turning point to his season. And a turning
point in his season will be a turning point in ours."
A return to form by Giguere is also important to the Mighty Ducks because
they are not scoring many goals. They have managed just 68 goals in 32 games
this season and only 15 in the past eight contests.
This will be the final stop on a three-game trip for the Sharks, 2-3-2-1
overall following a five-game win streak.
San Jose opened the trip Wednesday with a 3-2 overtime loss against Detroit
after it failed to hold a one-goal lead in the final minute. The Sharks allowed
a power-play goal and a shorthanded goal in a 4-2 loss to St. Louis the next
"Our defense struggled in the first period in terms of moving the puck,"
San Jose coach Ron Wilson said. "All you've got to do is play ugly hockey,
jump if off the glass, flip it out, do those sorts of things and we just didn't
get that done."