Tuesday, June 25, 2024

Trevor Zegras, Leo Carlsson skate together in Ducks’ preseason loss to Coyotes

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  • Ducks center Mason McTavish falls to the ice while going...

    Ducks center Mason McTavish falls to the ice while going after the puck during the first period of their preseason game against the Arizona Coyotes on Thursday night at Honda Center. (AP Photo/Mark J. Terrill)

  • Ducks forward Zack Kassian, right, tries to deflect a shot...

    Ducks forward Zack Kassian, right, tries to deflect a shot past Arizona Coyotes goaltender Connor Ingram during the first period of their preseason game on Thursday night at Honda Center. (AP Photo/Mark J. Terrill)

  • Ducks center Benoit-Olivier Groulx, left, and Arizona Coyotes defenseman Troy...

    Ducks center Benoit-Olivier Groulx, left, and Arizona Coyotes defenseman Troy Stecher reach for the puck during the first period of their preseason game on Thursday night at Honda Center. (AP Photo/Mark J. Terrill)

  • Ducks right wing Frank Vatrano, right, puts Arizona Coyotes center...

    Ducks right wing Frank Vatrano, right, puts Arizona Coyotes center Logan Cooley into the boards during the first period of their preseason game on Thursday night at Honda Center. (AP Photo/Mark J. Terrill)

  • Arizona Coyotes goaltender Connor Ingram deflects a shot away during...

    Arizona Coyotes goaltender Connor Ingram deflects a shot away during the first period of their preseason game against the Ducks on Thursday night at Honda Center. (AP Photo/Mark J. Terrill)

  • Ducks center Benoit-Olivier Groulx, left, falls to the ice as...

    Ducks center Benoit-Olivier Groulx, left, falls to the ice as he goes after the puck along with Arizona Coyotes defenseman Troy Stecher during the first period of their preseason game on Thursday night at Honda Center. (AP Photo/Mark J. Terrill)

  • Ducks forward Zack Kassian, center, tries to get a shot...

    Ducks forward Zack Kassian, center, tries to get a shot past Arizona Coyotes goaltender Connor Ingram, left, while defenseman Travis Dermott defends during the first period of their preseason game on Thursday night at Honda Center. (AP Photo/Mark J. Terrill)

  • Arizona Coyotes defenseman Troy Stecher, left, goes after the puck...

    Arizona Coyotes defenseman Troy Stecher, left, goes after the puck along with Ducks center Mason McTavish during the first period of their preseason game on Thursday night at Honda Center. (AP Photo/Mark J. Terrill)

  • Ducks goaltender John Gibson stops a shot during the second...

    Ducks goaltender John Gibson stops a shot during the second period of their preseason game against the Arizona Coyotes on Thursday night at Honda Center. (AP Photo/Mark J. Terrill)

  • Arizona Coyotes center Logan Cooley, right, goes after the puck...

    Arizona Coyotes center Logan Cooley, right, goes after the puck as Ducks defenseman Jackson LaCombe misses it during the second period of their preseason game on Thursday night at Honda Center. (AP Photo/Mark J. Terrill)

  • Ducks defenseman Radko Gudas, left, and Arizona Coyotes center Liam...

    Ducks defenseman Radko Gudas, left, and Arizona Coyotes center Liam O’Brien fight during the second period of their preseason game on Thursday night at Honda Center. (AP Photo/Mark J. Terrill)

  • Ducks forward Zack Kassian, left, scores past Arizona Coyotes goaltender...

    Ducks forward Zack Kassian, left, scores past Arizona Coyotes goaltender Connor Ingram, center, while defenseman Sean Durzi tries to defend during the third period of their preseason game on Thursday night at Honda Center. (AP Photo/Mark J. Terrill)

  • Arizona Coyotes center Logan Cooley, left, scores past Ducks goaltender...

    Arizona Coyotes center Logan Cooley, left, scores past Ducks goaltender John Gibson on a penalty shot during the third period of their preseason game on Thursday night at Honda Center. (AP Photo/Mark J. Terrill)

  • Arizona Coyotes center Logan Cooley, right, scores past Ducks goaltender...

    Arizona Coyotes center Logan Cooley, right, scores past Ducks goaltender John Gibson on a penalty shot during the third period of their preseason game on Thursday night at Honda Center. (AP Photo/Mark J. Terrill)

  • Arizona Coyotes center Logan Cooley is congratulated by teammates after...

    Arizona Coyotes center Logan Cooley is congratulated by teammates after scoring on a penalty shot during the third period of their preseason game against the Ducks on Thursday night at Honda Center. (AP Photo/Mark J. Terrill)

  • Arizona Coyotes center Nick Bjugstad, left, and Ducks center Adam...

    Arizona Coyotes center Nick Bjugstad, left, and Ducks center Adam Henrique face off as a linesman drops the puck during the third period of their preseason game on Thursday night at Honda Center. (AP Photo/Mark J. Terrill)

  • Arizona Coyotes goaltender Connor Ingram, left, talks with referee Reid...

    Arizona Coyotes goaltender Connor Ingram, left, talks with referee Reid Anderson during the third period of their preseason game against the Ducks on Thursday night at Honda Center. (AP Photo/Mark J. Terrill)

  • Ducks center Leo Carlsson, right, tries to get a shot...

    Ducks center Leo Carlsson, right, tries to get a shot past Arizona Coyotes goaltender Connor Ingram during the third period of their preseason game on Thursday night at Honda Center. The Ducks lost, 4-2. (AP Photo/Mark J. Terrill)

  • Arizona Coyotes defenseman Juuso Valimaki moves the puck during the...

    Arizona Coyotes defenseman Juuso Valimaki moves the puck during the third period of their preseason game against the Ducks on Thursday night at Honda Center. (AP Photo/Mark J. Terrill)

ANAHEIM — The Ducks continued both their rousing week in the executive suite and the uninspired stretch they’ve endured simultaneously on the ice on Thursday.

In the morning, they exalted after signing defenseman Jamie Drysdale to a three-year, $6.9 million contract extension. That concluded protracted negotiations that went beyond those of center Trevor Zegras, who signed a $17.25 million pact of commensurate length on Monday. Having the two signed for at least three more seasons and back with their teammates offered closure that was more dramatic – and delayed – than most clubs typically experienced.

While Drysdale did not suit up Thursday, the Ducks offered an unexpected glimpse of two other young standouts juxtaposed: Zegras on the left wing of 2023’s No. 2 overall pick, Leo Carlsson.

“I want [Zegras] to be on the ice with guys that can make plays and think like he does, and Leo does,” Coach Greg Cronin said. “I know that there’s been talk about Zegras playing in the middle, but if he can play on the wall and he can play with a guy like Leo, there’s going to be some chemistry there.”

“I thought Trevor, for a guy who hasn’t played a hockey game since April, was dynamic. I thought he was physical, he got in on the forecheck and he created like he does,” he added. “Leo was arguably the best player on the ice. He could have had three or four goals. That line was really good.”

Yet overall Thursday night, the Ducks were once again undone by a game-turning sequence as they were Tuesday against the Kings, this time in the second period of a 4-2 loss to the Arizona Coyotes at Honda Center.

Defenseman Lassi Thomson turned the puck over behind his own net, leading to a goal by electrifying rookie center Logan Cooley, and 65 seconds later, Thomson had another defensive-zone turnover become a goal-against from Alex Kerfoot’s one-timer. In the third period, Jakob Silfverberg clipped the post with a sterling power-play chance from the low slot that soon gave way to a short-handed breakaway and a filthy penalty shot goal for Cooley. That made Matias Maccelli’s subsequent power-play marker as well as the Ducks’ late goals from Sam Carrick and Zack Kassian academic.

“The first two came directly off of our sticks on full possessions, those were kind of giveaways, that happens,” said Cronin, who described the effect of the goals as “sticker shock.”

“We as a staff will look at it and try to come up with a plan – like, it happened against L.A., too – to be more vigilant about the way we’re managing the area in front of our net,” he continued.

Cooley, who is a short-list contender for the Calder Trophy as rookie of the year, and Kerfoot, whom Arizona acquired from the Colorado Avalanche this offseason, put their stamp on the game. The Ducks’ newcomers included Thomson, who was claimed off waivers this week, and Alex Killorn, who remained sidelined with a broken finger. Defenseman Radko Gudas made his presence known, enmeshing a fighting major into a night when he racked up nine penalty minutes. Gudas, along with Ilya Lyubushkin and potentially Kassian could add some serious sandpaper to the Ducks this season.

“I think it’s great, at times I think that’s an area that can get overlooked,” forward Adam Henrique said. “Certain people don’t like fighting in the game but I think it’s an important role within a team still.”

DECISION LOOMING ON KASSIAN

Kassian, who is with the Ducks on a professional tryout, scored Thursday. But his hook has always been his physical play, from his time as a point-per-game power forward in his draft year to helping protect Edmonton Oilers megastar Connor McDavid for McDavid’s entire career until this season.

Henrique played with Kassian in juniors with the Peterborough Pirates and expressed enthusiasm about the prospect of signing Kassian.

“He’s great, I’d played with him in the past and I’ve always loved his game. He’s a guy that works, mucks, grinds and knows what his type of game is. He plays the game hard and he has for a long time,” Henrique said. “It’s great to have him here, you kind of wait and see what happens here in the next few days and see how things fizzle out, but I thought he’s done a great job and brought to the table what is to be expected from a guy like him.”

INJURY NOTES

Chase De Leo will miss approximately eight weeks with an MCL sprain sustained in a knee-on-knee collision Tuesday with Kings winger Arthur Kaliyev, who was suspended for four games (two regular-season matches) by the NHL on Thursday for the hit.

Zegras (mouth) and Ryan Strome (elbow) both finished Thursday’s game in some apparent discomfort but there was no indication of any serious injury nor any official update.

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