Wow, it feels good to be writing this feature again. Hockey is finally back after a long summer and the Pacific Division is already throwing us curveballs. One thing that always remains the same is a Jonathan Quick injury — the one thing the Pacific Division can always expect to happen.
Here is how the division is shaping up after two whole games:
Anaheim Ducks (2-0-0)
Sure, we’re only two games in to the season, but the Anaheim Ducks are undefeated with eight skaters on the injured reserve. John Gibson has been incredibly solid in net, again, frustrating. We all suffered through the Ducks first win, so I’ll save you from having war flashbacks. Instead, I’ll let you know the Ducks took down the Arizona Coyotes 1-0. Max Comtois scored the lone goal, his second in two games. Gibson stopped a total of 41 shots, keeping the Ducks alive without professional cry baby Corey Perry and that guy Ryan Kesler. The Ducks lost another key player when Ryan Getzlaf suffered a lower-body injury on Saturday. This Ducks team is going to be an interesting one to watch as a group of young guys fill in for the veterans. It’s their 25th anniversary, could they go all the way? I’ll go with no, though I am hardly unbiased.
The Ducks face the Detroit Red Wings tonight at 7 p.m. Pacific.
Arizona Coyotes (0-2-0)
Oh Arizona, here we go again. The Coyotes are goalless after two games played. They opened up their season against the Dallas Stars and lost 3-0. Antti Raanta had a .880 save percentage. Nick Cousins had the most shots on goal with six. They took on the Anaheim Ducks next, where they went on to lose again. This time Raanta only allowed one goal, which is at least an improvement. The Arizona Coyotes are off to yet another rocky start.
The Arizona Coyotes will look to turn their luck around on Wednesday against the Ducks at 7 p.m.
Kachina pads: Effective. pic.twitter.com/TBfn92MVHy— Arizona Coyotes (@ArizonaCoyotes) October 7, 2018
Calgary Flames (1-1-0)
The Calgary Flames have played two games and they were both against the Vancouver Canucks. They opened up the season with a 2-5 loss. Yes, the Canucks scored five goals and won a game. I didn’t believe it myself. A healthy Matthew Tkachuk had a goal, the other was scored by Sean Monahan. Game two went in their favor, though. The Flames bounced back and won 7-4. Elias Lindholm had two goals, Tkachuk scored his second in two games and Johnny Gaudreau got his first goal of the season. Mike Smith made 16 saves on 20 shots. Calgary had a good Saturday.
They’ll face the Nashville Predators on Tuesday at 5 p.m.
Edmonton Oilers (0-1-0)
The Edmonton Connor McDavid’s played their first game of the season in Sweden against the New Jersey Devils. An unconventional start to the season gave them a familiar result. Last season was not what they were expecting and they’ve started off in a not so favorable fashion. Connor McDavid hasn’t had a goal yet, but he assisted both goals scored in their 2-5 loss to the New Jersey Taylor Halls. Leon Draisaitl and Milan Lucic had the opening goals of the season. Is Lucic back to playing well? Move over McDavid.
The Oilers will play their first North American game against the Boston Bruins on Thursday at 4 p.m.
Los Angeles Kings (1-0-1)
Finally, I have good new for you. The Sharks beat the Los Angeles Kings in their season debut, on their home ice and everything. Let us celebrate. The Kings did bounce back for game two, though. They beat the Detroit Red Wings 4-2 on Sunday. After losing Jonathan Quick to injury after one game like it’s 2016 again, Jake Campbell took over in net where he made 36 saves on 38 shots. Alex Iafallo had two goals, Anze Kopitar and Paul LaDue had the others.
The Kings take on the Winnipeg Jets tomorrow at 5 p.m.
Vancouver Canucks (1-1-0)
The Vancouver Canucks have scored nine goals in two games. You heard it here first: they are going to win the Stanley Cup. Our old friend Nikolay Goldobin had a goal in the opening game of the season, while Elias Pettersson had three goals in two games. As I stated above, they played both games against the Flames, winning the first and losing the second. I’ll leave it at that. Maybe the end of the Sedin era will be the start of a proper Vancouver rebuild?
The Carolina Hurricanes are up next for the Canucks. That’ll go down tomorrow at 4 p.m.
Vegas Golden Knights (1-1-0)
I am very happy to report to you that the Vegas Golden Knights lost their home opener against the Philadelphia Grittys. Marc Andre Fleury allowed five goals and was pulled as a result. They lost 2-5 and the entire city of Vegas cried, probably. Max Pacioretty made his Vegas debut and did a whole lot of nothing, landing just one shot on goal. Pierre-Edouard Bellemare and Jonathan Marchessault had the two Vegas goals. Game two against the Minnesota Wild resulted in a close 2-1 win. Fleury made 29 saves and as a result did NOT get pulled this time. Pacioretty got his first goal of the season with just a minute and a half left in the third period to tie the game and send it to overtime. Matt Dumba had the lone Wild goal. The game went into a shoot out with the winning goal coming off former Wild Erik Haula’s stick. Vegas got their first win of the season.
The Golden Knights will take on the Buffalo Sabres today at 12 p.m.
We remember these highlights like they happened yesterday......— Vegas Golden Knights (@GoldenKnights) October 7, 2018
because they did happen yesterday pic.twitter.com/hpZ1hRdLnn
Give us your Pacific Division predictions in the comments below!