• PRINT
  • RSS

Morning Rush

The Ducks had plenty of activity both on and off the ice the morning after a loss to the rival Kings

Wednesday, 12.2.2009 / 2:58 PM PT / Features
X
Share with your Friends


Morning Rush
false
By Matt Vevoda
AnaheimDucks.com

A tough loss the night before to the Kings was almost forgotten in the bevy of morning activity for the Ducks on Wednesday, a day after their lengthy homestand finally came to a close.

“It was nice to be back out there with the guys,” Lupul said. "A week ago, there was no chance I could be out on the ice. A lot of will depend on how I feel tomorrow. I have to see how my body reacts. I have my fingers crossed. I really want to be back as soon as possible. This is a critical time of the year for us.”
On the team’s docket was the acquisition of center Kyle Chipchura from Montreal, defensemen Brett Festerling and Brendan Mikkelson swapping roster spots, Erik Christensen being claimed off waivers by the Rangers and a practice at The Rinks – Anaheim ICE. This all took place before the clock struck noon, at which time the Ducks departed for Dallas and the start of a quick two-game road trip.

Within that flurry, Anaheim also saw the return of Joffrey Lupul to the ice during the roughly one-hour practice. The winger has been out of action since the Nov. 19 game against Tampa Bay with back spasms, an injury that has lingered since training camp.

“It was nice to be back out there with the guys,” Lupul said. “A week ago, there was no chance I could be out on the ice. A lot of will depend on how I feel tomorrow. I have to see how my body reacts. I have my fingers crossed. I really want to be back as soon as possible. This is a critical time of the year for us.”

With a seven-game homestand (during which they posted a 4-2-1 record) in the books, the Ducks are facing a stretch where 12 of their next 16 will come on the road over the next month. Only ratcheting up the difficulty are five back-to-back scenarios in that timeframe, the first coming Thursday at Dallas and Friday at Minnesota.

“It’s very taxing,” Lupul said. "But that is why you have system in place. That is why it is in place for a game when maybe everyone is not at 100 percent from a physical standpoint. If you go out and play that team game perfectly, you can still win any night and overcome a lot.”

“He is someone we have had our eye for a couple of years,” said Murray of Chipchura. “He’s a good-sized kid, has a head for the game, is good in his own zone, is good at reading plays and on the penalty kill. He finds ways to win in many different ways.”
Despite the hard-luck losses the past two games, the team feels that some progress was made during their extended stay at Honda Center. “We can’t lose sight of the fact that our team has played better over the last while,” Ducks head coach Randy Carlyle said. “We’re going to have to ramp it up and get back to playing a stronger defensive game and executing to a higher level. That for sure was evident last night.”

Said Ducks Executive VP and GM Bob Murray, “There were some positives. Jiggy was outstanding. That is a good positive. The special teams improved. The lack of passion and wanting to come to the rink for the game against Phoenix still disturbs me. It was there last night. They wanted to play last night. It just didn’t go our way.”

By acquiring Chipchura from the Canadiens for a 2011 fourth-round pick, Murray brings another young player into the mix with a winning pedigree. The 23-year-old won a gold medal as the captain for Team Canada at the 2006 World Junior Championship and followed that up by winning the AHL Calder Cup title with the Hamilton Bulldogs in 2007.

“He is someone we have had our eye for a couple of years,” Murray said. “He’s a good-sized kid, has a head for the game, is good in his own zone, is good at reading plays and on the penalty kill. He finds ways to win in many different ways.”

“Festerling has been a solid defenseman in the American Hockey League this season,” Carlyle said. “They were using him as their shutdown guy in San Antonio and they have been very happy with his progress in the Toronto Marlie organization."
Though Carlyle is not as familiar with Chipchura’s game yet, he does know Festerling, since the 23-year-old defenseman played 40 games with the Ducks last season. He has not played in Anaheim this season, splitting time in the AHL with San Antonio and more recently Toronto, where Mikkelson was sent down in his place.

“Festerling has been a solid defenseman in the American Hockey League this season,” Carlyle said. “They were using him as their shutdown guy in San Antonio and they have been very happy with his progress in the Toronto Marlie organization.

“Mikkelson, we felt, had struggled in the games as of late. He has a tremendous skill set. Right now, things seem to be going against them more than they are going for him. It’s about the ability for him to go down and play in the American Hockey League and to re-build some of the confidence that he displayed.”

Nestled in 13th place in the Western Conference with a 10-12-4 record and seven points out of playoff position, the Ducks still have a little way to climb. Whether it’s new Ducks or returning ones, the team will have do it through the holidays while mostly traveling. The first test awaits Thursday at American Airlines Center against the rival Stars.

“I’ve always been a believer that you focus on the first one,” Carlyle said. “That is the key. We’re looking to have success and we have to start in our first game.”

SCHEDULE

HOME
AWAY
PROMOTIONAL

STANDINGS

WESTERN CONFERENCE
  TEAM GP W L OT GF GA PTS
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

STATS

2014-2015 REGULAR SEASON
SKATERS: GP G A +/- Pts
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
 
GOALIES: W L OT Sv% GAA
F. Andersen 35 12 5 .914 2.38
J. Gibson 13 8 0 .914 2.60

AnaheimDucks.com is the official Web site of the Anaheim Ducks. Anaheim Ducks and AnaheimDucks.com are trademarks of Anaheim Ducks Hockey Club, LLC. NHL, the NHL Shield, the word mark and image of the Stanley Cup and NHL Conference logos are registered trademarks of the National Hockey League. All NHL logos and marks and NHL team logos and marks as well as all other proprietary materials depicted herein are the property of the NHL and the respective NHL teams and may not be reproduced without the prior written consent of NHL Enterprises, L.P. Copyright © 1999-2015 Anaheim Ducks Hockey Club, LLC and the National Hockey League. All Rights Reserved.

Privacy Policy     Contact Us    Jobs     Honda Center    Corporate Partnerships   Terms of Use   NHL TicketExchange  Site Map AdChoices