Matt Duchene and the Ducks Having Scoring Problems


Matt Duchene, like the Anaheim Ducks, continues to struggle.

The Colorado Avalanche came up with a big win on the road last night against the struggling Anaheim Ducks. The Ducks are now 0-3-1 on the season, with one goal through the four games while being shut out three times, including last night.

The Avalanche jumped out to an early lead on a goal by Nathan MacKinnon that squeaked through Frederik Anderson’s five-hole, and from there, they didn’t surrender the lead.

They also got a real nice goal from Jack Skille, and I’m starting to like this cat because he plays with intensity, and sports an admirable level of Skille. He possessed the puck for a good amount of time before eventually dishing the vulcanized rubber, only to get it back for a one-timer ripped five-hole on Anderson.

Also, Mikhail Grigorenko picked up his first point by assisting on Skille’s goal, and I think it’s safe to say that Borna Rendulic may be eating nachos for a bit, or relegated back to the AHL where he belongs.

Finally, John Mitchell gets his fourth goal in as many games on an empty net bid.

Here’s your 3 stars of the night:

No. 1 Star: Reto Berra: Shutout on 35 shots

No. 2 Star: Nathan MacKinnon: 3 shots, 1 goal, and a plus-1 in 16:35 of ice time

No. 3 Star: Francois Beauchemin: 3 shots, 2 hits, and a plus-1 in 21:23 of ice time (I think the Ducks miss Beauchy because Jack Skille deserved to be the third star).

Notice who’s not listed…

Matt Duchene Continues to Struggle

However, there is some disconcerting news. I’ve been keeping an eye on Matt Duchene throughout the course of this season, and I even called for a goal and a couple assists for him in last night’s game.

Alas, Matt Duchene was again held off the score sheet, and the gentleman that I was sitting next to kept commenting on how he forgot Matt Duchene even played for our team because of his lack of performance (he was an Avs fan too, and obviously being facetious).

That’s exactly it though, Matt Duchene has been unnoticeable on the ice, he’s not making any patented Dutchy maneuvers, and he’s not skating with deliberation and intensity. It’s rather alarming to watch.

What’s even more notable is how well Mikko Rantanen played on Dutchy’s wing last night. He was all over the ice, and lead the Colorado Avalanche in shots with 4 in 10:34 of ice time.

What I’m trying to say is that Rants outplayed Dutchy even though he didn’t play the same amount of minutes, and spent some time on different lines as well. His increased level of play may be a result of playing on Duchene’s wing, but that’s irrelevant.

Related: What Does Matt Duchene Need to Succeed?

When you’re an elite center in the game, and you have an 18 year old on your wing who is jumping like crazy, then you, as the elite player, must take the onus upon yourself to apply that jump to your game as well. Not only did Matt Duchene not enact said action, he failed to provide many noticeable shifts at all.

The Colorado Avalanche are a welcome 2-2 after a rather up and down start to their season. But, that’s four games without a point for Matt Duchene, and he’s had plenty of ice time to create his chances.

It’s obvious that Patrick Roy is trying to get Matt Duchene going just by the amount of changes he’s made to that line during games. So far, his efforts have been to no avail.

Colorado Avalanche fans know that Dutchy can be a streaky scorer, but if the Avs want to get going and have a chance at making the playoffs this year, then Duchene is going to have to rip the monkey from his back.

What’s on Tap?

The Colorado Avalanche and Matt Duchene complete their two-game road trip on Sunday against the L.A. Kings. The Kings have also struggled out of the gate (1-3), so look for the Avs to jump on them early as well. I’m not calling for Dutchy to play well this game because it didn’t bode well last night, and I’m a superstitious gent.

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However, one of these games, the branches are going to snap and Duchene’s going to bring the whole tree down. He can’t be happy with his game, and he’ll eventually get angry enough to play out of his mind. Hopefully that’s sooner rather than later because the Avalanche could use some scoring from their “top-line” center.

Anyway, congratulations on the win boys, way to show up last night and hold a steady pressure of skate to the throat of the Anaheim Ducks. Now, Sunday’s around the corner and hopefully it’s a holy day for Jonathan Quick, allowing the Avs to find those holes and capitalize.

What do you think Avs fans? Is there anything to be done about Matt Duchene’s woes? How will they fair if he continues to underperform. As always, your opinion is valued so let us know what you think in the comments! 

Next: Does it Matter if Duchene Never Reaches Consistent Elite Level?

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