The Anaheim Ducks Have Plenty to be Thankful For This Season

4 of 6

November 15, 2014; Los Angeles, CA, USA; Anaheim Ducks left wing

Matt Beleskey

(39) moves the puck against the defense of Los Angeles Kings defenseman

Drew Doughty

(8) during the first period at Staples Center. Mandatory Credit: Gary A. Vasquez-USA TODAY Sports

3. Secondary Scoring

Another player who has been a boost for the Ducks this season is Matt Beleskey. Through 23 games, Beleskey has scored more goals than Sidney Crosby, James Neal and John Tavares. His ten goals are tied for ninth in the NHL, and he is one goal away from tying his career high (11 in the 2009-2010). Beleskey has also appeared in every game for the Ducks this year and has the best 5-on-5 CF% on the team among forwards who have played at least five games (56.37%). Beleskey helped fill the void when Perry was out with the mumps, scoring two goals and three points in the five games Perry sat. These are extremely impressive numbers for a player who has long been considered a “grinder” and scrappy player (although he did put up 90 points in 62 games in his final junior season with Belleville of the Ontario Hockey League).

The secondary scoring has been key for the Ducks, who have had multiple players go down with injuries early in the season. He probably won’t sustain this production (his career shooting percentage entering the season was 8.16%, but his shooting percentage currently sits at 16.1% on the season), but if he can continue to be a reliable secondary scoring option, the Ducks will be very thankful for his presence in the lineup. Beleskey himself will also get some looks from other teams and has set himself up for a solid payday, as he will be an unrestricted free agent on July 1st, 2015.