Ducks end homestand with loss to Red Wings

Gary A. Vasquez-USA TODAY Sports
The Anaheim Ducks dropped their fifth game in a row, finishing their eight-game homestand with a 1-6-1 record.

ANAHEIM, Calif. – The Anaheim Ducks fell late to the Detroit Red Wings on Sunday night, a 3-2 defeat that extended the Ducks’ losing streak to five games. Anaheim concludes their eight-game homestand with a 1-6-1 record after tonight’s result. Troy Terry and Ryan Strome returned from upper-body injuries while Alex Stalock backed up Lukáš Dostál with John Gibson out sick.

Trevor Zegras kicked off the scoring for Anaheim just twenty seconds into the game with a deft deflection of a shot from the point by Terry. It’s his second goal since returning from a month-and-a-half layoff.

“He was terrific. He was good,” said head coach Greg Cronin. “He’s always going to give you offense and I’m always motivating him to be focused defensively as well and I thought he was good defensively tonight. He made smart plays with the puck. There were a couple of chances inside the (offensive) blue line that he maybe could have tried and instead, he chose to put it behind the other team’s net. He was good, he’s been good since he’s been back.”

As he did last Wednesday against the Toronto Maple Leafs, goaltender Lukáš Dostál kept the Ducks in the game, making several fantastic saves that prevented the Red Wings from pulling away at any point.

“He’s done a great job for us,” said Cam Fowler of Dostál. “The Toronto game (last week), he was the main reason why we were even in that game. They had 50+ shots and he stood on his head. We did a much better job defensively tonight, but he made the key saves when he needed to and our goalies have done that for us all year. He’s been really good.”

However, the penalty monster reared its ugly head for the Ducks again, with a Jakob Silfverberg interference penalty midway through the first period helping provide the canvas for the Red Wings’ first goal of the night. Anaheim would take two more penalties in the period but escaped the rest of the period unscathed.

Detroit would take their first lead of the game on a Joe Veleno wraparound early in the second period. Initially, it appeared that Dostál had stopped the attempt, but a video review overturned the call and ruled it a goal.

Anaheim answered back early in the third with Zegras getting his second goal of the game. Cam Fowler collected the puck on the left-side boards and then fired a cross-ice pass to a wide-open Zegras, who ripped a shot over the left shoulder of Alex Lyon. This assist put Fowler in a tie with Steve Rucchin for fifth in points on the Ducks’ all-time leaderboard (432).

“I think I’ve just been around a long time,” Fowler said with a grin. “It’s nice to be mentioned with some of those great players. I’ve been fortunate to be here as long as I have. It’s an honor to be on one team for 13 years, whatever it’s been. I’m very thankful for that.”

A high sticking penalty from Frank Vatrano with under four minutes to go in the third put the Ducks in some hot water, but they were able to kill it off. However, Radko Gudas appeared to suffer an injury during the kill after he got in front of a shot from David Perron. Gudas was eventually able to skate off on his own after play was stopped, but he did not return for the conclusion of the game.

The Red Wings would take the lead for good with 1:06 remaining in the third period when Michael Rasmussen used his left skate to redirect a shot pass from Mo Seider past Dostál. The play was reviewed to determine whether Rasmussen had kicked the puck in, but the goal eventually stood.

The Ducks will now head out on a five-game road trip which begins on Tuesday with a matchup against the Nashville Predators. Puck drop is scheduled for 5 PM PST.