Pittsburgh Penguins

Video: Difficult night for Andersen as Ducks fall to Penguins

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The Anaheim Ducks made it interesting, but their comeback attempt fell short against the Pittsburgh Penguins on Friday. The second period was their downfall.

It was a particularly difficult night for Anaheim goalie Frederik Andersen, who was actually credited with three giveaways playing the puck, as the Ducks fell by a final score of 5-2.

“It’s fair to say,” said Andersen, as per the Orange County Register. “I think a couple of them were stoppable today. Just a couple bad bounces off the glove. That’s how it goes sometimes.”

The Ducks fell behind three goals in the second period, then scored twice in the third period as they pushed the pace to get within two goals. Too little, too late.

Again, tough night for Andersen, who allowed four goals on 20 shots.

Here is the opening goal — a Blake Comeau slap shot that beats Andersen over the glove. And then Andersen appears to get clipped with a high stick from a Pittsburgh player skating by.

Here is Pittsburgh’s second goal — a wrist shot from below the goal line from Patric Hornqvist, who scored twice.

Goalie nods: Dubnyk to make 23rd straight start

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All the latest from the blue paint…

Devan stays busy

More of the same for Minnesota tonight — Devan Dubnyk will start when the Wild take on the Hurricanes in Carolina.

Tonight will mark Dubnyk’s 23rd straight start, a stretch in which he’s showed zero signs of fatigue or slowing down. He’s gone 17-3-1 during his time with the Wild, posting a 1.62 GAA, .939 save percentage and five shutouts.

At this stage — given his stellar play and heavy workload — one has to wonder if Dubnyk could slide into Vezina contention as one of the three finalists. The only category he’s not among the league leaders is wins (26), but is tied for 10th overall, which isn’t too shabby.

For Carolina, Anton Khudobin will be in goal.

Elsewhere…

Jackets at Devils: Sergei Bobrovsky vs. Cory Schneider

Sabres at Sens: Chad Johnson vs. Andrew Hammond

Flames at Wings: Jonas Hiller vs. Jimmy Howard

Oilers at ‘Hawks: Ben Scrivens vs. Corey Crawford

Pens at Ducks: Marc-Andre Fleury (probable) vs. Frederik Andersen (probable)

Friedman: Ducks felt their success was a ‘bit of a mirage’

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The Anaheim Ducks are an interesting team, to say the least.

Sixty-six games into the season and the Ducks sit atop the NHL standings with a 42-17-7 record.

Yet compared to the other teams in the race for the Presidents’ Trophy, Anaheim’s statistics are remarkably, um, unremarkable:

— Ninth in goals per game
— 18th in goals-against
— 22nd-ranked power play, with the 13th-ranked PK
— 16th in shots per game, 15th in shots against
— 15th in score-adjusted Fenwick

As we’ve noted before on PHT, the one thing the Ducks have done really well is win one-goal games, in which they’re a rather implausible 26-0-7.

Where are we going with all this?

Well, according to Sportsnet’s Elliotte Friedman, the Ducks themselves had doubts that they were as good as their record suggested. Hence, all the trades they made leading up to the deadline, acquiring the likes of James Wisniewski, Simon Despres, and Korbinian Holzer for the blue line, as well as forwards Tomas Fleischmann and Jiri Sekac.

“It’s interesting. They really like what they did,” Friedman told Sportsnet 960 yesterday, per Nichols on Hockey. “And it’s pretty clear – and I didn’t really realize it until I spoke to them – they think that their success was a little bit of a mirage. That they felt that [goalies Frederik Andersen and John Gibson] were absolutely saving them and they didn’t think they were very good.

“They felt very strongly that they could handle themselves against the heavier teams. The Kings, they felt okay with. The Blues, they felt okay with. But the really good-skating teams – the Blackhawks and some of the Eastern teams that saw them recently like Tampa – they thought they were just terrible against them. They couldn’t get the puck and they had nothing they could do.”

The Ducks, by the way, have won seven of their last eight heading into tonight’s game versus Pittsburgh.

Video: Iginla reaches 20-goal mark for 16th time in NHL career

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At the age of 37, Jarome Iginla continues to be a consistent goal scorer in the National Hockey League.

On Wednesday, Iginla gave the Colorado Avalanche a 1-0 lead over the Pittsburgh Penguins after he blasted a slap shot that beat Marc-Andre Fleury on the stick side. That gives Iginla 20 goals on the season. It’s the 16th time in his NHL career he’s hit the 20-goal mark.

Video: P.K. Subban illustrates hockey instincts through GoPro camera perspective

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First, it was Sidney Crosby to show off his skills from the perspective of the GoPro camera. Now, it’s Montreal Canadiens star P.K. Subban’s turn.

The dynamic defenseman shows off his stickhandling and shooting abilities that have helped turn him into one of the most exciting players in the league when at the top of his game.

“A lot of the stuff becomes instinctual,” says Subban in the video. “It’s like muscle memory. It’s repetitive.”