Pacific Division Round Up: All-Star Break Edition

The NHL All-Star Game rolled into San Jose this week, giving us a brief break from the Pacific Division battle.

We saw significantly less hockey this week because of the All Star Game, making this week’s update a bit brief. We’ll be back to your regularly scheduled enemy watch next week. For now, all of our least favorite players in the Pacific joined forces with the Sharks to fight for the Pacific Division’s honor in the All-Star Game.

Anaheim Ducks (21-21-9)

The Anaheim Ducks took the ice only once this week before the break kicked off. After losing 3-0 to the New York Islanders, the St. Louis Blues rolled into Anaheim and didn’t go easy on them. They beat them 5-1, the only Anaheim goal came off the stick of Daniel Sprong. John Gibson let five goals past him before being relieved by Chad Johnson who only had one shot put on him. At least he had a 1.000 save percentage, right?

The bad news keeps coming for the Ducks. Ondrej Kase, who has 11 goals and 9 assists on the season, will miss the rest of the season. Kase suffered a torn labrum in his shoulder against the Minnesota Wild last week. He will undergo surgery and be expected to return to the ice in five to six months. Yikes, it is not getting better for the Ducks.

The Ducks face the Winnipeg Jets on Feb. 2.

Here’s the Ducks’ mascot Wild Wing making a save. This is the only positive highlight I can find for the Ducks this week (thanks, John Gibson):

Arizona Coyotes (23-23-4)

Yes, the Arizona Coyotes have won more games than the Anaheim Ducks. One of those wins came this week against the Ottawa Former Sharks, er, Senators. The Desert Dogs won 3-2, with Vinnie Hinostroza finding the net twice. The third goal came from Derek Stepan. Fear the Fin’s favorite boy, Chris Tierney, did not score, though Dylan DeMelo had an assist.

Arizona went on to lose 2-1 to the Montreal Canadiens. Conor Garland had the only goal for the Desert Dogs. Calvin Pickard was in net and made 22 saves. Not too shabby for the team with goaltending woes. A bit of a side note, Olympian Kendall Coyne Schofield beat the ‘yotes Clayton Keller in the fastest skater event at the All-Star Game’s skills competition.

Arizona sees the Sharks next on Feb. 2.

Calgary Flames (33-13-5)

The Calgary Flames won again, but this time it came in overtime. So, they half lost? I don’t know, I’m trying to make myself feel better. The 3-2 win over the Carolina Hurricanes saw goals from Mikael Backlund, Mark Jankowski and Oliver Kylington. David Rittich made 33 saves.

Not much for news out of Calgary this week. The city is talking about re-homing the team to a new arena, but this has been spoken about in the past. Will it actually happen? Who knows!

Calgary faces the Washington Capitals on Feb. 1.

Edmonton Oilers (23-24-3)

The Edmonton Oilers lost the one game they played this week, which sounds about right for the season they’re having. The 3-2 loss was delivered to them by the Detroit Red Wings. Leon Draisaitl and Matt Benning got Edmonton on the board, but they couldn’t pull off a win.

In response, the Oilers dropped their general manager this week. Peter Chiarelli, the general manager and president of hockey operations was fired from his position, possibly during the game against the Red Wings. Kieth Gretzky will replace him for now and the hunt is on for his replacement. Will this be the push the Oilers desperately needed?

The Oilers play the Philadelphia Flyers on Feb. 2.

Los Angeles Kings (20-26-4)

I don’t want to scare you all, but the Los Angeles Kings won the only game they played this week. The 4-3 regulation victory came over the St. Louis Blues. Anze Kopitar, Tyler Toffoli, Drew Doughty and Paul LaDue found the net. Jonathan Quick made 33 saves. The Kings looked, dare I say, good?

The Kings made a transaction and announced a Stadium Series game this week. They sent Dominik Kubalik to the Chicago Blackhawks for a fifth round pick in the 2019 draft. The Kings also announced they will be playing the Colorado Avalanche at Falcon Stadium next year. It was an interesting week for this organization.

Vancouver Canucks (23-22-6)

The Vancouver Canucks were handed a 5-2 loss from the Carolina Hurricanes on Wednesday. Sven Baertschi and Josh Leivo had the only Vancouver goals. Jacob Markstrom made 29 saves between the pipes. What this team has offensively, they lack in the defense department. Maybe this team isn’t on the rise after all.

The Canucks look to change their luck against the Colorado Avalanche on Feb. 2.

Vegas Golden Knights (29-19-4)

The Vegas Golden Knights were one of the few teams who had two games to play before heading into the All Star break. First, the Minnesota Wild visited Sin City. What happened in Vegas didn’t just stay in Vegas for the Wild — they brought home a 4-2 victory. Max Pacioretty and Alex Tuch got Vegas on the board, but ultimately, they fell short.

Then came the Nashville Predators. This game ended in another loss for Vegas, the final score 2-1. Pacioretty had another goal, the only one his team was able to generate. Marc-Andre Fleury made 25 saves on the night.

Vegas sees Carolina next on Feb. 1.