Ducks struggle in shut out loss to Canadiens, 5-0

David Kirouac-USA TODAY Sports
Anaheim's attack was non-existent as they got blanked in Montreal.

In their first road game back since the all-star break, the Ducks seemed to have some rust. The game got off to a slow start, with neither team being able to get on the board in the opening period. In the second, the Canadiens got their scoring started with three different goals from Jake Evans and Nick Suzuki (2 goals). The third period would see more of the same as the Ducks failed to generate any sort of attack and put some pressure on Montreal. Two more third-period goals for the Canadiens would extend their lead to 5-0 and get them across the finish line with an emphatic shutout victory.

Here are three takeaways from the game:

Ducks manage just 13 shots all game long

The effort for the Ducks was flat out underwhelming on Tuesday night, as they saw only 13 shots through their attack during the course of the game. This took the majority of the pressure away from the Canadiens as they cruised through the contest without any threat of a comeback from Anaheim. For Montreal goalie Cayden Primeau, it was a great night. He saved all 13 of the Ducks’ shots on the way to his first shutout performance of the season. After the game, Cam Fowler shared his thoughts on the way the team came out and played in the loss. “They did a great job, they played hard,” he said. “We didn’t, and that’s why you see a result like that.” Anaheim remains near the very bottom of the league in shot attempts per game, and their lack of aggressiveness is continuing to cost them any chance at being competitive on the ice.

Canadiens burn Dostal on the power play

While the Ducks dealt with their offensive issues, the Canadiens found a way to make their power play opportunities count. Of their 5 goals, 2 came via the power play throughout the course of their 6 power play chances.

One of the Montreal power play scores

The scores on the power play came in the second period from Nick Suzuki and once again in the third period with Juraj Slafkovsky (above). In total, the Canadiens managed to convert on 5 of their 38 shots as they secured the shutout win. Dostal fell to 8-13-1, and he is now allowing 3.61 goals per game this season. It would have taken a heroic effort from Dostal to keep the Ducks in the game long enough for any chance at a comeback, and now he and the rest of the team will have to hit the drawing board once again.

Mintyukov, McTavish return from injury

Perhaps the game itself did not see many positives for the Ducks, but they were able to gain back a couple of players who returned from injury. Pavel Mintyukov returned to the ice after an 11-game absence, while Mason McTavish returned after missing just one game. Mintyukov is in the middle of his rookie season and has appeared in 41 games for the Ducks. He has 2 goals and 17 assists so far on the year. As for McTavish, he has played a much more prominent role on the ice so far. His 13 goals and 18 assists have helped him to put up the fourth-most points on the team this season. In other injury news, Alex Killorn has seemingly made impressive progress as he continues to rehab from arthroscopic knee surgery. This past weekend, he made his return to practice and has even joined the team for their 4-game road trip. While he didn’t appear during the game against Montreal, his presence with the team is a good indication that he will be back sooner than later for the Ducks.

Anaheim will head to Ottawa as they make their way through Canada and prepare for a battle against the Senators on Thursday. They currently sit at the bottom of the Atlantic Division and give the Ducks a nice chance to grab their first post-all-star break victory.

The game is scheduled to begin at 4:00 p.m. PT.