Los Angeles Hockey: Adam Foote

Ducks: Top line still doing damage

March, 27, 2011
Ducks (42-28-5, 89 points) vs. Colorado Avalanche (28-38-8, 64) at Honda Center, 7:05 p.m.

Five storylines to track:

1. Three's a charm -- The top line of Corey Perry, Ryan Getzlaf and Bobby Ryan teamed up for both goals Saturday night in a 2-1 victory in Chicago. The trio have been carrying the team the last 13 games, combining for 19 goals and 34 assists while helping the Ducks go 10-3-0 during that span. Perry, Getzlaf and Ryan have combined for 18 goals and 31 assists in 54 career games against the Avalanche.

2. Red-hot Duck -- Of course, no NHL player is hotter than Perry, who scored both goals against the Avs and has four goals in the last two games and eight in the last five. His last eight goals have come on just 25 shots, a blistering shooting percentage of 32%. Perry leads the league with 20 third-period goals. The last Anaheim player to lead the league in goals was Teemu Selanne with 47 in 1997-98.

3. Familiar foe -- In a bit of a scheduling quirk, the Ducks will be playing Colorado for the fourth time in 51 days. The first three meetings came while No. 1 goalkeeper Jonas Hiller was sidelined with vertigo-like symptoms. Curtis McElhinney shut out the Avs, 3-0, on Feb 5 but was traded to Tampa Bay three weeks later for Dan Ellis, who won the last two meetings against Colorado.

4. Cam's a winner -- Ducks rookie defenseman Cam Fowler scored the overtime winner Wednesday in Dallas, his eighth goal of the season. When Fowler scores that’s usually a good sign for Anaheim, which is 6-1-1 in games in games that he has hit the net. Folwer is also getting a better hand at the defensive end. He’s a minus-one in the last eight games, putting him at minus-25 for the season.

5. Avs injury report -- Colorado has been devastated by injuries this season and little has changed heading into the Anaheim game. Defenseman Ryan Wilson suffered a knee injury and center Mark Olver a head injury in a 4-3 loss Thursday against Toronto and didn’t play Saturday in a 4-1 loss against the Kings. Defenseman Matt Hunwick also missed the Kings game with back injury and Adam Foote is expected to miss the Anaheim game with a leg injury.

Kings: Time to power up for the Avalanche

October, 22, 2010
Kings (4-2-0) vs. Colorado Avalanche (4-3-0) at Pepsi Center, 6 p.m. (PT)

Five storylines to track:

1. Kings powerless play – The Kings have officially hit rock bottom in power play efficiency, converting just one of 22 extra-man opportunities through the first six games. The sad part is they’ve given up more short-handed goals (two) than they’ve scored on the power play. Fortunately, they’ve made up for it with a strong penalty kill, snuffing out 24 of 26 extra-man situations, and one of those goals was into an empty net.

2. Playing too nice? – The Kings are next to last in the NHL in penalty minutes, averaging just 9 minutes in the box each game. That’s the good part. What might need to be addressed is the other team’s fear factor when they play the Kings. Los Angeles has incurred just one fighting major thus far, which is tied for last in the league. Kings star defenseman Drew Doughty was taken out with a questionable hit in the first period Wednesday against Carolina and nobody paid the price. Then again, the Ducks lead the league in both categories and they’ve started 3-4-1.

3. Kopitar’s shooting slump – Anze Kopitar got into the goal-scoring column with his first of the season Wednesday night, but is still well below his career averages. Kopitar, the team’s leading scorer last season, has a .125 career shooting percentage, but is at .040 so far this season. He has played well against Colorado, however, owning 16 points in 16 career games. Colorado is also allowing an average of 3.29 goals game, sixth-worst in the league.

4. Road success – The Kings have won three straight close games at Pepsi Center, one in overtime, one by shootout and the other a 6-5 thriller in January 2009. They are 6-3-1 in the last 10 at Colorado, which equals their best road winning percentage against all teams.

5. Avalanche of injuries – Colorado is dealing with their own injury woes. Adam Foote, a 39-year-old defenseman and team captain, suffered a concussion Thursday night in a 4-2 loss to visiting San Jose and will not play against the Kings. Foote is the second Colorado player to be sidelined with a concussion. Left wing Peter Mueller was injured in a preseason game against the Kings on Sept. 22 and has not returned.