In one of this summer's biggest offseason trades, the Anaheim Ducks sent four-time 30-goal scorer Bobby Ryan to the Ottawa Senators in exchange for a package centered around up-and-coming forward Jakob Silfverberg.
While Ryan has played well for the Senators in the early going, Silfverberg has shined a bit brighter.
Silfverberg looks to lead the Ducks to a fourth consecutive victory Sunday night when they host his former team.
After recording 19 points in 48 games during his 2012-13 rookie season with Ottawa (1-1-2), Silfverberg has greatly surpassed expectations with the Ducks (3-1-0). He has already posted a team-leading four goals and an assist, becoming the third player in franchise history to score four times in his first four games, joining Teemu Selanne in 1996 and Daniel Winnik last season.
"I've been fortunate to play with two great players," Silfverberg, who turns 23 on Sunday, said of linemates Mathieu Perreault and Selanne. "They're so good at one-on-one battles and at finding me. I've been lucky so far and it's a matter of keep shooting the puck."
Silfverberg scored twice while Winnik and Dustin Penner added a goal and an assist as the Ducks cruised to a 6-0 win over the New York Rangers in Thursday's home opener. Perreault, Corey Perry and Selanne chipped in with two assists apiece.
"We want to build up a lot of confidence at the start of the season," said Silfverberg, whose team has outscored opponents 13-5 during a three-game run. "We can't get satisfied. We got to keep pushing harder."
Ryan, meanwhile, has two goals and two assists in his first four games with Ottawa. The left winger scored again Saturday, but the Senators suffered their first regulation loss 3-2 at San Jose after getting outshot 50-23, including 24-5 in the third period.
"I thought for a lot of the 5-on-5 time we did a good job," Ryan said. "Not early but we found our way. We did a lot of good things, just not enough to win."
Robin Lehner matched a franchise record with 47 saves in his season debut for Ottawa, which has dropped three straight (0-1-2).
The Senators could go back to No. 1 goalie Craig Anderson, who made 35 saves in a season-opening 1-0 win at Buffalo before allowing eight goals in his last two games.
Anderson is 2-6-0 with a 3.34 goals-against average against the Ducks, posting a 4.37 GAA in losing three consecutive matchups.
Anaheim's Jonas Hiller, who stopped all 34 shots against the Rangers, is 2-0-0 with a 1.44 GAA. He has also thrived in three career starts against the Senators, winning each while compiling a 1.62 GAA.
The Ducks are 9-1-1 in their last 11 matchups against the Senators, including four wins in the 2006-07 Stanley Cup Finals.
Perry has totaled six goals and six assists during an eight-game point streak versus Ottawa, including playoffs.
Senators defenseman Joe Corvo, who was scratched after being hit in the eye by a puck in the morning skate, is uncertain to play Sunday. Penner is unlikely to be available for the Ducks due to a lower-body injury.
After this contest, Ottawa concludes a season-opening six-game road trip against Phoenix on Tuesday.
The Associated Press News Service
The Associated Press
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