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Get Carter

A healthy scratch in the season opener at San Jose, Ryan Carter was a bright spot for the Ducks against Phoenix and an increased role in the offense may be on the horizon

Monday, 10.13.2008 / 3:49 PM PT / Features
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Get Carter
By Matt Vevoda

In his 2008-09 debut against the Coyotes, Ryan Carter scored a goal and had a plus-two rating in just over 10 minutes of time on the ice.
A healthy scratch in the Ducks’ season opener at San Jose, Ryan Carter wanted to make a strong impression in his 2008-09 debut against Phoenix on Sunday.

With a goal and a plus-two rating in just over 10 minutes of time on the ice, the 25-year-old succeeded as a bright spot for the Ducks in an otherwise disappointing 4-2 loss to the Coyotes in their home opener.

“I think Ryan Carter played with more desperation and was involved in the play much more than what we saw throughout training camp,” Ducks head coach Randy Carlyle said. “Not just in the goal that he scored, but I thought he was on the puck and was physical. That is the type of hockey that he has to play.”

As injuries to Rob Niedermayer (bruised foot) and Travis Moen (stiff back) kept them out of practice on Monday and day-to-day in their returns to the lineup, it looks like Carter may get an even bigger chance to showcase his abilities beginning on Tuesday at Los Angeles.

The St. Paul, Minnesota-native skated on the team’s top forward line with Ryan Getzlaf and Corey Perry at practice. Carlyle indicated playing Carter, primarily a center during his 35 career NHL games, at left wing alongside the former All-Stars is a wrinkle he is considering for the Ducks’ offense.

“Is there a bigger opportunity for a young player coming into the league and trying to make his mark than to get to play with Getzlaf and Perry?” Carlyle said. “Hopefully he takes advantage of it. “

Carter realizes the immense opportunity that could be had, but his concentration will remain on doing the little things for the Ducks.

"His biggest assest is his ability to skate and use his body," Ducks head coach Randy Carlyle said of Carter. "He can shoot the puck and has a big-time wrist shot."
“With a chance to play with those guys, who are obviously good players, things can happen,” Carter said. “I have to focus on moving my feet, playing physical and getting in on the forecheck. Through that hopefully comes a little offense.”

When injuries besieged the team’s lineup during a stretch last season, Carter was given a similar break and rose to the occasion. Seeing time on the second and third forward lines, Carter chipped in with the first four goals of his career during a five-game stretch from Feb. 8-17. Only a freak wrist injury against Colorado on Feb. 20 derailed his hot streak.

“We had (Samuel) Pahlsson and (Doug) Weight down and he came in and made a contribution,” said Carlyle of Carter, who returned for the final regular season game of 2007-08 and the playoffs. “He was our surprise.”

Based on the development Carter had displayed, the Ducks quickly inked the would-be free agent to a three-year contract on April 29.

“His biggest asset is his ability to skate and use his body,” Carlyle said. “He can shoot the puck and has a big-time wrist shot. He surprises a lot of goaltenders with the velocity and quickness of it.”

Sat by Carlyle in the 2008-09 season opener, Carter understands that he must play to his strengths in order to stay on the ice and off the head coach’s scratch list.

“Moving my feet and playing physical is what I have to do to have success,” Carter said. “If I’m having a bad night, it’s usually because I’m standing still. That transcends into not playing physical because I’m a step behind and not catching up to guys. They kind of work hand in hand. In order for me to play well, I need to do both those things.”

Notes: If both Niedermayer and Moen are unable to play against the Kings, there is a chance Carlyle would have to call on one of his defensemen to step in as a forward. The Ducks head coach indicated that Steve Montador would be the most likely candidate, having played both roles with Florida last season while Ken Klee is also a possibility.

After being granted a U.S. work visa late last week, defenseman Nathan McIver was finally able to join the team in Anaheim over the weekend. In a whirlwind since being claimed by the Ducks from Vancouver on Oct. 4, McIver is happy everything has finally started to settle down.

“It was an emotional, up-and-down few days,” said McIver, who scored the game-winner in the Ducks’ preseason finale against his former team on Oct. 5. “It was really tough. I was with the team for one day in Vancouver, then they left and I wasn’t able to travel. You’re with a new team and you want get to know everyone. I was sitting in Vancouver for a week waiting and watching them in their game against San Jose. I’m really excited to be here now.”




1 z - ANA 82 51 24 7 228 221 109
2 y - STL 82 51 24 7 239 197 109
3 x - NSH 82 47 25 10 226 202 104
4 x - CHI 82 48 28 6 220 186 102
5 x - VAN 82 48 29 5 236 220 101
6 x - MIN 82 46 28 8 227 198 100
7 x - WPG 82 43 26 13 223 204 99
8 x - CGY 82 45 30 7 237 213 97
9 LAK 82 40 27 15 218 197 95
10 DAL 82 41 31 10 257 257 92
11 COL 82 39 31 12 209 223 90
12 SJS 82 40 33 9 224 226 89
13 EDM 82 24 44 14 193 276 62
14 ARI 82 24 50 8 165 267 56


R. Getzlaf 77 25 45 15 70
C. Perry 67 33 22 13 55
R. Kesler 81 20 27 -5 47
J. Silfverberg 81 13 26 15 39
S. Vatanen 67 12 25 5 37
P. Maroon 71 9 25 -5 34
C. Fowler 80 7 27 4 34
H. Lindholm 78 7 27 25 34
M. Beleskey 65 22 10 13 32
R. Rakell 71 9 22 6 31
F. Andersen 35 12 5 .914 2.38
J. Gibson 13 8 0 .914 2.60

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