Adam Henrique leading Ducks’ charge towards playoffs

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If the Anaheim Ducks brought back the Flying V, Adam Henrique would be spearheading it at the moment.

This isn’t the early 90s, however, so leading the Ducks’ charge as they plot their assault on a playoff spot will have to do.

Fans are unlikely to complain too much.

Indeed, Henrique has been an integral part of the late-blooming Ducks team that is finding its stride after dealing with extensive injuries that decimated its lineup early in the season.

Henrique was brought in via trade in late November to stem the bleeding and stabilize the Ducks down the middle, who were missing Ryan Getzlaf and Ryan Kesler at the same time.

The move proved useful at the time and the Ducks didn’t fall directly off a cliff.

Speaking with NHL.com’s Amalie Benjamin, Randy Carlyle said Henrique came not a moment too soon.

“We were in dire need of what he brought and the position he played,” coach Randy Carlyle said. “Obviously we had some key personnel out with Kesler and Getzlaf not in our lineup, and Henrique came in and filled that void for us for an extended period of time.

“I think for anybody it’s a win-win. When that happens usually your team feels good about the acquisition of the player and the player feels good about the place he’s put into and the position he’s played into and the role that he gets. Usually if you’re having success personally that usually bodes well for your team.”

Now, with Getzlaf and Kesler back to full health, the move looks even more beneficial.

The Ducks have a solid spine at the moment, and Henrique is producing at a torrid pace with six goals in his past six games, part of a six-game point streak that matches a career-best.

Henrique has 11 goals in 25 games with Anaheim.

Henrique’s success has evidently helped in the win column. The Ducks have won three straight and they ended the Boston Bruins’ 18-game point streak on Thursday, just to further cement their intentions.

And now the Ducks are tied on 59 points with both the San Jose Sharks, losers of their past two, and the Los Angeles Kings, who have three wins in their past 10 games.

For now, Anaheim sits outside of a playoff berth on tiebreakers. A slip up by either team ahead of them could propel the Ducks into second place in the division,

Given their recent success and the recent woes of those around them not called the Vegas Golden Knights, and it appears the Ducks are just beginning to take flight, with Henrique and Co. looking to land mid-April in the playoffs.


Scott Billeck is a writer for Pro Hockey Talk on NBC Sports. Drop him a line at phtblog@nbcsports.com or follow him on Twitter @scottbilleck