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NHL Pacific Division Round Up: Quick Returns to Kings’ Lineup

The Pacific Division is possibly the most unpredictable division in the league right now. The Vancouver Canucks topped the division a few weeks ago, now they sit only three points above the Los Angeles Kings. The Anaheim Ducks slipped low on the table and now find themselves in second. It’s hard to keep up with, so that’s where we come in. Here’s how our rivals are shaping up as we head into December.

Anaheim Ducks (14-10-5)

The Ducks turned their game around this week. Since losing to the Nashville Predators on Sunday, they’ve gone on to win four straight games. The first was on Tuesday against the Tampa Bay Lightning. They came out with a 3-1 win, seeing goals from Nick Ritchie, Josh Manson and Carter Rowney. Ryan Miller was between the pipes and made 34 saves. They played the Florida Panthers next and won 3-2. Nick Ritchie stayed hot, scoring two goals. Josh Manson had another goal, too. Josh Gibson was back in net, making 42 saves.

They beat the Carolina Hurricanes in overtime, 2-1. Pontus Aberg tied it up in the third period to keep the Ducks alive. Ryan Getzlaf netted one in overtime, keeping their winning streak alive. The Ducks continued their roadie against the Washington Capitals. This game was a big one and the Ducks came out with the 6-5 win. They were down 3-1 by the end of the first period. Getzlaf had the only Anaheim goal. They came back to score two more in the second, thanks to Andrew Cogliano and Rickard Rakell. Pontus Aberg added two goals in the third period, while Hampus Lindholm had a single, giving the Ducks the win.

The Ducks head home to play the Chicago Blackhawks on Wednesday at 7:30 PT.

Arizona Coyotes (12-11-2)

The Arizona Coyotes had three games on their schedule this week and won all of them! They kicked things off against the Minnesota Wild, finding a 4-3 victory. Josh Archibald had two goals and an assist. Lawson Crouse and Michael Grabner had the two other Arizona goals. Antti Raanta obtained a bone bruise in this game and was replaced by Adin Hill, who will be starting in goal until Raanta’s return. As a response to their goalie woes, the Coyotes claimed Calvin Pickard off waivers from the Philadelphia Flyers. Hill put on a show in net when they faced the Nashville Predators. He recorded a shutout and the Coyotes had three goals. Nick Schmaltz, Clayton Keller and Brad Richardson recorded goals. Adin Hill made 29 saves.

The Coyotes hosted the St. Louis Blues on Saturday and won 6-1! Adin Hill manned the net and had a .962 save percentage. Clayton Keller, Richard Panik, Jakob Chychrun, Nick Cousins, Christian Fischer and Alex Goligoski all found the back of the net. It was truly a team effort.

The Coyotes head to L.A. to face the Kings tomorrow at 7:30 PT.

Calgary Flames (16-9-2)

The Calgary Flames started their week off losing in overtime to the Dallas Stars. They were down by one going into the second period, but were able to tie it up thanks to goals from Johnny Gaudreau and Mark Giordano, sending the game to overtime where a Tyler Seguin goal ended it. They turned it around when the Los Angeles Kings rolled into town. They won that one 4-1. Mikael Backlund scored once in the first period and again in the third. Johnny Gaudreau and Sean Monahan had a goal apiece. The Kings only took 14 shots on goal and Mike Smith saved 13 of them.

The Flames faced the Chicago Blackhawks on Sunday. They were tied up at the end of the first period with a goal from Sean Monahan. Come the second, they were up 3-2. Derek Ryan and Elias Lindholm each had a goal. That would be all she wrote for the Blackhawks and Flames match up.

The Flames visit the Columbus Blue Jackets tomorrow at 4 PT.

Edmonton Oilers (13-11-2)

The Edmonton Oilers faced the Dallas Stars on Tuesday. The game went scoreless by the end of regulation, ending with an overtime goal scored by Oscar Klefbom. They played a close game against the L.A. Kings later in the week that ended with a 3-2 Edmonton win. Oscar Klefbom had a goal and an assist. Alex Chiasson and Jesse Puljujarvi also got on the board.

The Oilers hosted the Vegas Golden Knights on Saturday. Connor McDavid opened up scoring with a first-period goal. The Golden Knights tied it up in the second period. Ryan Spooner scored his first goal as an Oiler and it happened to be the winning goal against Vegas. Today we celebrate Ryan Spooner.

Edmonton visits the Dallas Stars today at 5:30 PT.

Los Angeles Kings (10-16-1)

Jonathan Quick made his return to the Los Angeles Kings line up this week after being out several weeks with an injury. The Kings have struggled with injuries all season and that continues to be an issue. Now they’ll be without free agent acquisition Ilya Kovalchuk for four weeks as he prepares for ankle surgery. Prior to Quick’s return, they faced the Vancouver Canucks and won in overtime. Alex lafallo scored first, but Vancouver tied it up. Dustin Brown scored the overtime winner. Jonathan Quick made his return against Edmonton where they lost 3-2. Dustin Brown and Jeff Carter had goals and Quick had .912 save percentage.

The Kings lost 4-1 to Calgary on Friday. Cal Petersen made his return between the pipes and struggled a bit. Adrian Kempe had the lone L.A. goal. They faced the Carolina Hurricanes on Sunday and came out with a 2-0 victory. Kyle Clifford and Alec Martinez scored two late goals to win another game. Jonathan Quick made 35 saves for a shutout. Are the Kings’ woes finally coming to an end? Meh, I doubt it.

The Kings host the Arizona Coyotes tomorrow at 7:30 PT.

Vancouver Canucks (11-15-3)

Another tough week for the Vancouver Canucks. They lost 2-1 in overtime to the Kings. The lone Vancouver goal was scored by Markus Granlund. They lost again on Thursday, a 4-3 disappointment against the Vegas Golden Knights. Brock Boeser had two goals and Alexander Elder had one, but it wasn’t enough to take the Canucks to victory.

They hosted the Dallas Stars on Saturday and, you guessed it, lost again. They had only one goal again, this time scored by Bo Horvat. The final score was 2-1. Oh Vancouver, why did you have to break our hearts and get all bad again?

The Canucks play the Minnesota Wild tomorrow at 7 PT.

Vegas Golden Knights (14-13-1)

The Golden Knights scored eight goals against the Chicago Blackhawks on Tuesday. Yes, that was the game after they killed the Sharks. At least the Blackhawks got on the board and the game ended with an 8-3 score. Cody Eakin and Shea Theodore each had two goals. Alex Tuch, Daniel Carr, William Karlsson and Ryan Reaves also got on the scoreboard. Marc-Andre Fleury made 21 saves. They had another successful game against the Vancouver Canucks, winning 4-3. Max Pacioretty had a pair of goals, William Carrier and William Karlsson had a goal apiece.

Vegas faced Edmonton and lost, finally. They fell 2-1. Their only goal came off of William Karlsson’s stick, who is on a nice little scoring streak. Marc-Andre Fleury made 32 stops. Fleury had three shutouts in the month of November. I’m here to remind you the Sharks were definitely not one of them. I swear.

Vegas host the Washington Capitals tomorrow at 7 PT.

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