Ducks goaltender Frederik Andersen returns to the net to face the Senators, and John Gibson sits

Ducks goalie John Gibson has owned the net since Frederik Andersen fell ill Nov. 24 and sat out the next six games. Andersen was set to return to the Ducks’ net for Wednesday’s game against the Ottawa Senators at the Honda Center. Gibson was set to serve as Andersen’s backup as the Ducks’ eight-game homestand continued.

“Just take it as a learning experience,” Andersen said of filling a backup role behind Gibson for the last month-plus. “You go through times you don’t play and you get to work more on your game and get experience mentally. I think that’s been the biggest thing so far, just stay strong and keep working at getting that next chance.”

No question, it’s been a challenge for Andersen, who was the Ducks’ unquestioned No. 1 last season, when they advanced to the Western Conference finals before losing to the eventual Stanley Cup champion Chicago Blackhawks in seven games.

“I think it’s great to see ‘Gibby’ playing well and the team playing well in front of him,” Andersen said. “I know at the end of the day, it doesn’t make me a worse goalie. It’s just good and a positive that we’ve been turning things around a little bit and getting closer to a playoff spot. I want to be ready to contribute and help get wins when I get back out there.”

Andersen said it was “a tough question” as to whether it’s been more difficult mentally or physically to sit and watch the games after coming within one victory of matching the franchise record with 35 victories in 2014-15. He was 5-8-5 with a 2.50 goals-against average and a .913 save percentage in 21 games going into Wednesday.

“Physically, you do your reps on the ice and you get the shots, but you obviously don’t get to see game shots, or game play,” Andersen said. “But you just take what you can get. You’ve got to just be calm about events and it’ll be all good.”

However, he said he wouldn’t put too much emphasis on one start making or breaking his season. There are too many games left in the season to believe one great or poor showing could sway the decisions of Ducks coach Bruce Boudreau, who has been known to change his mind once or twice.

“The goaltending situation is we’ve got two good goalies,” Boudreau said. “Freddie’s going in because he hasn’t played in a while. We want to keep them both sharp.”