As goals dwindle, Corey Perry finds success setting them up for Ducks teammates
CHICAGO — Corey Perry typically isn’t one to break into detailed analysis on a topic.
You aren’t likely to get a point-by-point breakdown of what’s made him a top winger for the Ducks over his career or a player-by-player assessment of his team or that of the ones he regularly faces off against.
His approach is often the simpler one. Play hockey and play it better than the guy across from you. Do whatever you can to win, even if it means straddling the fine line of what’s acceptable and what isn’t.
So as the longtime goal scorer has become more of a playmaker in this challenging Ducks season, Perry doesn’t get into how he’s adapting his game as he sees his mid-30s in front of him. The fact that he has become a passer and leads them in assists is simple.
“I’m just playing,” Perry said Monday. “It’s just the way it’s worked out, I guess. Just seeing the ice and guys are making good plays to get open too. I’ve got to move them the puck if they’re open.”
It isn’t a conscious effort to be more of a set-up artist than the finisher. Perry loves to score goals and there are 353 of them on his resume. But with several of the Ducks’ top forwards out due to injury, the four-time All-Star sees how much attention he draws given that he’s one of the few remaining natural playmakers in their lineup.
If he can open up space for others, so be it. That was the case Saturday when he drew the focus of Kings defenders long enough to give linemate Nick Ritchie a pass that he put past goalie Jonathan Quick with a shot from the most-preferred slot area.
“I never have really thought of it,” Perry said. “If I see somebody open, I’m […]