Ducks-Flyers Preview

AP - Sports

Although they're missing some key pieces, the Anaheim Ducks are finding ways to overcome those losses on their longest road trip of the season.

The short-handed Ducks will try for their third straight win Tuesday night when they visit a Philadelphia Flyers team that seems to have moved past the worst start in franchise history.

Following consecutive losses to open this eight-game trip, Anaheim (9-3-0) bounced back with a 2-1 victory over Ottawa on Friday before beating Columbus 4-3 on Sunday.

The wins, however, have been costly for the Ducks.

They're missing Jakob Silfverberg, who is expected to be out at least a month after a slash from Ottawa's Jared Cowen broke his hand. The forward got off to an outstanding start to his first season in Anaheim with four goals and three assists.

The Ducks also have to move on without Saku Koivu after the center was knocked unconscious by the Blue Jackets' Brandon Dubinsky. Koivu, who has two goals, has returned to Anaheim for tests.

"I'm sure it will be discussed by a lot of people," said coach Bruce Boudreau of the hit on Koivu, which resulted in Dubinsky's ejection. "It does me no good stating thoughts and things like that."

Anaheim also might be without center Mathieu Perreault, who sprained his left wrist in Ottawa and did not play against the Blue Jackets. Perreault is third on the team with nine points.

The Ducks, though, still have leading scorer Corey Perry. The right wing scored his sixth goal Sunday, putting Anaheim ahead with 2:25 remaining.

Teammate Ryan Getzlaf has scored in each of his last two games, giving him five goals and 12 points. He has two goals and three assists in his last four games against the Flyers (3-7-0).

Anaheim also has been banged up between the pipes, where Viktor Fasth hasn't played since suffering a lower-body injury Oct. 16 and has since returned to Anaheim for treatment.

Rookie Frederik Andersen, however, has stopped 44 of 48 shots while winning the last two, and the Ducks announced Sunday that they signed him to a two-year extension.

Andersen or Jonas Hiller will get the start against a Philadelphia team looking to build on its season-best scoring effort in a 5-2 road win over the New York Islanders on Saturday.

The Flyers, averaging 1.8 goals, hadn't scored more than twice in any of their first nine games. Vincent Lecavalier provided them with a spark Saturday with his seventh career hat trick.

"This was a really good game for me and for the team," Lecavalier said. "Overall, (this) is a good confidence boost for everybody. It feels really good to score more than two goals."

After a franchise-worst 1-7 start, Philadelphia has a chance to win three straight as it faces the Ducks for the first time since Claude Giroux's overtime goal gave the Flyers a 4-3 win in Anaheim on Dec. 2, 2011.

Steve Mason has been a bright spot during Philadelphia's struggles. He stopped 26 of 28 shots versus New York, lowering his goals-against average to 2.15.

Mason, however, went 0-1 with a 6.87 GAA in his last two appearances against Anaheim while with Columbus in 2011-12.

The Flyers will try to avoid their third straight loss to the Ducks in Philadelphia, where the teams are meeting for the first time since Oct. 21, 2010.

View Comments