Apr 22, 2013, 4:27 PM EDT
The Anaheim Ducks can win their first Pacific Division banner since 2007 with a win tonight in Edmonton — and they’re turning to their 30-year-old rookie netminder to get it done.
The Ducks head into tonight on 62 points, five clear of third-place Vancouver, meaning a win would also lock up second overall in the Western Conference.
Anaheim has just one Pacific Division banner in franchise history and has missed the postseason in two of the last three years, so tonight’s game carries some weight — especially since the Ducks haven’t been playing well as of late.
They’re just 5-4-1 in their last 10 and head coach Bruce Boudreau was visibly disappointed following Friday’s 3-1 loss to Calgary, noting that the recent poor run of play prevented Anaheim from a division title that should’ve been wrapped a while ago.
“We’re certainly not going to (win the division, finish second in the West) playing the way we did the first two periods,” Boudreau explained. “I couldn’t have cared less if we were playing a midget team or the Russian national team.
“We needed the win and that should have been motivation enough.”
If Fasth stands tall tonight, Boudreau could be faced with a tough decision come playoff time. Both goalies have been strong this year and boast excellent statistics (Fasth: 14-5-2, 2.20 GAA, .921 save percentage; Hiller: 14-6-4, 2.42 GAA, .910 save percentage).
Boudreau has also played both pretty evenly down the stretch. Over the last eight games, Fasth has been the goalie of record four times…and Hiller has been the goalie of record four times.
- Comeback fit for a King: Lundqvist, Rangers even series in Game 4 12
- WATCH LIVE: Rangers at Lightning, Game 4 of Eastern Conference Final 6
- Fetisov wants to restrict young Russians from playing in the NHL 38
- All eyes on Lundqvist 10
- Quenneville opted for ‘fresh legs’ by inserting Nordstrom, Versteeg into lineup 12
- Video: Ducks hold off Blackhawks in Game 3 to take series lead 30
- (Video) PHT Extra: On Babcock, sticking to the process and housebuilding analogies 3
- Babcock predicts ‘pain’ for Leafs, who are a ‘massive, massive challenge’ 39
- Babcock wants to ‘put Canada’s team back on the map’ 48
- Flyers won’t trade Del Zotto, but ‘something will have to give’ on crowded blue line 26
- Reports: Sabres thought they had a deal with Babcock, aren’t happy (172)
- Leafs land Babcock with reported 8-year deal, estimated at $50 million (130)
- Russia to be punished for ‘completely out of order’ actions after Worlds final loss to Canada (91)
- Report: Sabres negotiating with Babcock (82)
- What’s wrong with Lundqvist? (70)