Jennifer Stewart-USA TODAY Sports
Before Saturday's game we caught up with Chris Kober from Anaheim Calling. We do so again today in preparation for game 2 of the Ducks mini-series with the Desert Dogs tonight in Glendale.
Honestly, I wish there was an answer to this question so that he could figure it out and bring it to the rest of his games. I would like to say that somehow he is able to use his greatest asset (speed) to break down the defense, but looking at his two hat trick games that really hasn't been the case.
Last year the blame for all three of his goals could lie on the shoulders of Mike Smith. Bruce Boudreau said "it might have been the ugliest hat trick I've ever seen," after the game last year. As for Saturday, his first goal was his best of the night, a matter of a quick release from the top of the crease; the second was a screened shot that Smith probably should have picked up on, but didn't see, and he was left wide open all alone in the slot on the third because of a miss-communication between Boedker and Morris.
So unfortunately, the best answer I have is lucky bounces against Smith and coverage breakdowns by the Phoenix D.
Do you believe fatigue from playing back to back games was the main reason the Ducks lost the game on Saturday?
Yes, the Ducks' 4-1-1 record in the second of back to backs this season doesn't tell the whole story. They've played some of their ugliest games after having played the previous night, but have come out smelling like a rose thanks in large part to three shootout wins.
A few weeks ago in St. Louis they had a game very similar to Saturday's that was just sloppy, sloppy, sloppy and everything went in on both sides of the ice, but they were able to pull it out in the skills competition. And last week they had similar opportunities to put the Kings away before crumbling in the third period.
Luckily for the Ducks the month of March is almost perfectly spread out with one day of rest between each game, but on the other hand they still have four sets of back to backs before the end of the season.
This might be the trickiest call he's had to make in goal all season. Hiller has been steadily improving since coming back from a minor groin injury two weeks ago and played his best game of the year, so far, on Friday against Minnesota. Meanwhile Fasth has come back to earth a little bit, giving up four goals in two of his last three games, which happen to be the only blemishes on his career record.
If I'm Boudreau, I go back to Fasth one more time before declaring Hiller the latest hot hand. Either way, I predict that both goalies get more help from the teams in front of them tonight.
You can once again check out my answer's to Duck's fans questions over at Anaheim Calling.