You couldn’t have two teams having more drastically different seasons than Anaheim and Dallas facing off tonight on Versus (8 p.m. ET).
Dallas has overcome an injury to their starting goalie Kari Lehtonen and found a young stud in his stead in Richard Bachman. Meanwhile, young forward Jamie Benn is a rising star and Loui Eriksson continues to be quietly one of the most productive forwards in the league. Having things shake out this well is a blessing for the Stars and a lot of that credit belongs to new head coach Glen Gulutzan.
In Anaheim, however, things haven’t gone so smoothly.
As you know, the Ducks fired Randy Carlyle recently, replacing him with Bruce Boudreau. Boudreau hasn’t quite been able to work his magic with a Ducks team that is suffering from poor performance all over the ice. Ryan Getzlaf and Bobby Ryan are having a down seasons, Corey Perry hasn’t single handedly put the team on his back and carried them the way he did last season, and Jonas Hiller has looked rough in goal. The only guy stepping things up is 41 year-old Teemu Selanne who is leading the team in points.
All this does is shape things up for Dallas to continue rolling along tonight unless Boudreau’s message has started getting through to the rest of the Ducks.