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Ducks not considering firing coach Carlyle amid 11-game losing streak

Courtesy: NHL Public Relations

WINNIPEG — The Anaheim Ducks lost their 11th consecutive game when Bryan Little scored with 11 seconds remaining in overtime to give the Winnipeg Jets a 4-3 win at Bell MTS Place on Sunday.

Little roofed a rebound, capping Winnipeg’s comeback after the Ducks led 2-0 and 3-2. Ben Chiarot tied the game 3-3 at 14:05 of the third period when his shot from the right point went through traffic and past Ducks goalie John Gibson.

“I was kind of trying to find a seam to [defenseman Jacob Trouba] and ended up just shooting it,” Little said of his game-winner. “I think we were both whacking at it for like four or five seconds and it got right on my stick and I just tried to shovel it up.”

 

Anaheim is 0-7-4 since a 3-1 win at the Pittsburgh Penguins on Dec. 17. The 11-game streak is the longest for the Ducks since they entered the NHL in 1993.

“We came in here, obviously everyone knows what we’re going through,” Ducks defenseman Cam Fowler said. “This team, how [the Jets] play in this building. I thought our guys gave it a heck of an effort and we were there with them every step of the way. It takes a funny bounce in the third for them to tie it up and then I had my chance in overtime.”

Blake Wheeler and Patrik Laine scored for the Jets (29-14-2), and Connor Hellebuyck made 28 saves.

Brian Gibbons, Rickard Rakell and Andrew Cogliano scored for the Ducks (19-18-9). Carter Rowney had three assists, and Gibson made 30 saves.

“It’s frustrating, obviously,” Rowney said after the Ducks lost the opener of a five-game road trip. “We think we played a good enough game that it gave us a chance to win but they get a late one there and they scored in OT.”

Gibbons scored his first of the season when his cross-ice pass deflected off Chiarot and into the net at 2:19 of the first period. Rakell made it 2-0 with a wrist shot at 16:14 before Wheeler’s power-play goal at 19:00 cut the margin to 2-1.

“It just changed the momentum a little bit and gave us a little boost,” Wheeler said of his goal. “That’s the power play’s job. They didn’t spend a whole lot of time in our zone in the first and they got a good break on the first [goal]. To cut that [deficit] in half going into the first intermission was a little boost.”

Laine, playing in his 200th NHL game, tied it 2-2 at 2:24 of the second period with his team-leading 25th of the season, a one-timer from the slot.

Cogliano put Anaheim ahead 3-2 at 15:48, beating Hellebuyck from below the right circle for his first goal in 17 games.

General manager Bob Murray said after the game that he has no intention of changing coaches and placed much of the onus for the losing streak on the players rather than on coach Randy Carlyle.

“While it’s not my preference to make comments on this topic during the season, our recent play has led to many questions. Our fans are frustrated, rightfully so, and deserve a response from me,” Murray said. “At this time, I am not considering a coaching change. I am more focused on our players, specifically with who is going to step up in this situation. The way we played tonight was a step in the right direction, but we need much, much more. We have higher expectations for this group, and they should expect more from themselves.”

 

They said it

“All of us, we can’t be down. We can’t change what happened. We can just continue to build on it and take it as a building block and a staple of how we’re going to have to play and get ready for Detroit.” – Ducks coach Randy Carlyle

 

“Sometimes those teams are really dangerous. They played a desperate game; I thought they played really well. They had a couple goals that were kind of bad bounces but those go both ways some nights. They gave us a tough game.” — Jets forward Bryan Little

 

Need to know

Rakell has six points (two goals, four assists) in his past six games. … Jets forward Mark Scheifele has two goals and five assists during a five-game point streak. Little has four goals and three assists during a five-game point streak.

 

What’s next

Ducks: At the Detroit Red Wings on Tuesday (7:30 p.m. ET; FS-D, PRIME, NHL.TV)

Jets: Host the Vegas Golden Knights on Tuesday (8 p.m. ET; TSN3, ATTSN-RM, NHL.TV)