Anaheim Ducks Lose Two Key Players to Injury Against the Dallas Stars

DALLAS, TEXAS - OCTOBER 24: Josh Manson #42 of the Anaheim Ducks is helped off the ice in the first period at American Airlines Center on October 24, 2019 in Dallas, Texas. (Photo by Ronald Martinez/Getty Images)
DALLAS, TEXAS - OCTOBER 24: Josh Manson #42 of the Anaheim Ducks is helped off the ice in the first period at American Airlines Center on October 24, 2019 in Dallas, Texas. (Photo by Ronald Martinez/Getty Images) /

As if a 2-1 loss weren’t enough, the Anaheim Ducks lost two key players early in the game against the Dallas Stars.

The Anaheim Ducks demons have not been exercised at American Airlines Center, and their losing streak in Dallas continues. For their third consecutive game, the Ducks have lost, managing to score only one goal in each of their contests. On paper, it may not look good for the team, especially considering last season. Nevertheless, all things considered, they didn’t have a horrible game against the Stars last night.

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Unfortunatley, John Gibson had a little bit of an off night. He made a big comeback in the second and third period, but his struggles in the opening 20 minutes gave Dallas’ fourth line the opportunity to capitalize and score two unanswered goals from Denis Gurianov. Once again, the Ducks also had issues getting the puck into the back of the net. They had a few great chances but just weren’t able to finish. Both the offense and defense both took a big hit with injuries late in the first period as well.

Positive Take Away’s from Anaheim Ducks vs Dallas Stars

Despite the glaring negatives from another Anaheim Ducks loss, there are also a few positives that we, as fans, can take away from this game. The first of which, Nick Ritchie didn’t take any penalties during the game against the Dallas Stars. Small victories are worth celebrating, and after last Tuesday’s matchup against the Nashville Predators, any time he stays out of the box, it is a victory for the team.

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All things considered, Ritchie has had a relatively good start to the season. His point production may not necessarily back that up, but his underlying numbers do. We’ve already established that he can be somewhat of a hothead who doesn’t know how to control his temper. There is no disagreement there. Nevertheless, if he can find the back of the net more, and continue this trend of staying out of the penalty box more often, he could be one of the Ducks more valuable assets this season.

Another positive that we can take away from this game is the Ducks power-play goal scored by Maxime Comtois. Up until this point, Anaheim’s power-play left a lot to be desired. As things stand now, after last night’s goal, they are third from the bottom of the league, having a 7.4% success rate on the power play.

Last night, the power play probably looked better than it has all season. Now, that isn’t saying much, but at least they looked a little more confident and put the pressure on. This also ends Max Comtois‘ scoring drought this season, and hopefully, this has opened the flood gates for more production from the young forward.

Anaheim Ducks Lose Two Key Players to Injury

Aside from their 2-1 loss at the hands of the Dallas Stars, the biggest hit the Anaheim Ducks took last night were the injuries sustained by both Josh Manson and Ondrej Kase. The two of them were both injured near the end of the first period and did not return for the rest of the game, definetly shaking things up on the blueline and among the Ducks forward group.

Manson’s injury came after getting his leg caught in an awkward position. Speculation is that he hyperextended his knee, causing damage to the muscle or surrounding tissue. He was in visible pain and had to be assisted off the ice, unable to put any weight on his leg. According to Eric Stephens of The Athletic, Manson was seen sporting crutches. That is news you don’t want to hear on the back end of a difficult road trip.

Ondrej Kase was involved in a collision late in the first period. After intermission, he did not return to the bench. The Anaheim Ducks have not provided many details about his injury, reporting that he has an upper-body injury. Fans have been fearing the worst, concussion, and with his history, that does not bode well for the young Czech winger. Nevertheless, we cannot jump to conclusions just yet.

Both players are reported to miss the next two games on the Anaheim Ducks road trip against the Colorado Avalanche and Vegas Golden Knights. The organization has stated that they will release more information on their injuries next week. These two injuries are not good for the Ducks, and it begs the question, what is the next step?

Bob Murray seems to be one step ahead of us. This afternoon it was reported that he had traded  Andreas Martinsen and their 7th round pick in the 2020 NHL Entry Draft to the Pittsburgh Penguins for veteran defenseman Erik Gudbranson. Where he will slot in, that remains to be seen. As far as the open forward spot, we could see Devin Shore‘s ice time increase or the Ducks could use their first call up of the year, asking either Kiefer Sherwood or Daniel Sprong to step up and help the big club.

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