Anaheim Ducks: Success On Road Has Been Key To Hot Start

Anaheim Ducks Strong On Road

Rick Osentoski – USA TODAY Sports

The Anaheim Ducks faced a daunting six-game road trip heading into the second week of February, as they traveled east to meet the Colorado Avalanche, Dallas Stars, St. Louis Blues, Chicago Blackhawks, Detroit Red Wings and Nashville Predators. With a 3-2 shootout win over the Predators last night, the Ducks finished the six-game stretch with a 5-1 record, with the Stars being the only team to get the best of them. Rookie goaltender Viktor Fasth continues to be one the league’s top performers, and is now 8-0-0 on the season. He went 5-0-0 for the team on the road trip, with Jonas Hiller taking the loss to the Stars in the second of his two appearances for the month so far.

Fasth’s performance has been a huge part of the Ducks’ success so far, as the rookie continues to supplant Hiller as the team’s top netminder. He now boasts a 1.78 goals against average and a .933 save percentage and is just two wins away from tying the rookie record for consecutive wins to start a career. The shootout win against the Predators also highlighted the offensive depth for the Ducks, as the team got goals from Matt Beleskey and Patrick Maroon. Beleskey has scored in consecutive games and has three goals for the season, while Maroon’s goal was his first of the season. Bobby Ryan has also rediscovered his scoring touch, and has three goals and five points in the last four games.

The Ducks will now host the Columbus Blue Jackets on Monday and then have almost a week off before hosting the Avalanche next Sunday. With 23 points they sit behind only the Blackhawks in the Western Conference (and for that matter, the entire NHL). Their hot start to the season has been amazing and their performance on the recent road trip has them looking like a top playoff contender.

Jonathan Katje is an NHL blogger for Rant Sports. Follow him on Twitter @JKatje or add him to you network on Google.

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