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.
- Emery to start Game 1 versus Rangers 56
- Bulletin-board material: Why your team won’t win the Stanley Cup 26
- PHT staff picks: Who’s going to win the Stanley Cup? 45
- 2014 Stanley Cup Playoffs: PHT’s Round 1 picks 31
- Pressing Question: Can the Blackhawks avoid the Stanley Cup hangover? 10
- Florida wins ’14 NHL draft lottery, will pick first overall 41
- Philly mum on Mason’s availability for Game 1 vs. Rangers 26
- Pressing question: Can the Blues get back on track? 16
- That’s a raise: Flyers sign MacDonald to six-year, $30 million extension 91
- Sabres, Panthers have best odds for 2014 NHL draft lottery 16
- That’s a raise: Flyers sign MacDonald to six-year, $30 million extension (91)
- Lightning’s Malone arrested for DUI, cocaine possession (73)
- Update: Daniel Sedin in stable condition, hospitalized after scary hit (58)
- Emery to start Game 1 versus Rangers (56)
- Halak’s agent ‘bewildered’ by Oates’ remarks prior to Blues game (51)