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Ducks’ Nick Ritchie hopes to score goals that count soon

By in Press Enterprise on September 28, 2017

By Eric Stephens

ANAHEIM – The game will be long forgotten, and so should the goals, but anyone used to getting them on a regular basis loves it when they can find their scoring touch right away.

Nick Ritchie put two in the net Monday against Arizona, though they won’t stick to his stat sheet since it was a mere exhibition game. But when you’re expected to provide scoring for the Ducks, it doesn’t hurt to feel that you can as the regular season nears.

“Well, I think obviously it does,” Ritchie said when asked whether preseason scoring matters. “I think it’s more about your habits on the ice and how they feel you’re playing. And just kind of getting back in the swing of things. You want success to go along with it, as far as whether that’s scoring goals or whatever.

“But I think what’s most important is you just want to feel right. When it’s time to go, it’s full tilt. It’s just making sure you’re ready for the start of the season.”

Ritchie, 21, had his share of moments during his first full season at the NHL level. Some were low (his punch to the face of Chicago’s Michal Rozsival that got him suspended for the Ducks’ first playoff game) and some were sky-high (his winning third-period goal in Game 7 to beat Edmonton).

The latter further gave the big left wing the feeling he could perform in critical moments for the Ducks. Ritchie wants to be a player Ducks coach Randy Carlyle will turn to in important situations.

“Scoring a goal in that level of game at that time obviously helps you as a player with confidence and the belief that you can do more of that,” Ritchie said Wednesday. “Scoring more goals and hopefully score more big goals. It really gives you confidence […]    

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