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Ready to Play

After three grueling days of training camp, the Ducks are more than ready to get the preseason going tomorrow night

Monday, 09.20.2010 / 7:27 PM / Features
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Ready to Play
By Matt Vevoda
AnaheimDucks.com


“There are lots of people who are sore and lots of muscles are at the fatigue point," Carlyle said. "The third day is usually the day that those things become more prevalent and guys get a little grouchy playing against one another. They are ready to start playing some games.”
After three long days of training camp and battling each other in scrimmages, the Ducks are more than ready to take some aggression out on an opponent.

Much to the team’s delight, one is coming tomorrow night to Honda Center in the form of Pacific Division foe Phoenix, the first preseason game of 2010-11.

“We always call the third day of training camp ‘The Hump Day’,” Ducks head coach Randy Carlyle said. “There are lots of people who are sore and lots of muscles are at the fatigue point. The third day is usually the day that those things become more prevalent and guys get a little grouchy playing against one another. They are ready to start playing some games.”

Split once again into two groups at THE RINKS – Anaheim ICE, there was no shortage of physical play during the two 30-minute periods of intrasquad play today. The White squad secured the first goal of the contest, when Maxime Macenauer converted a backhand feed from Jason Blake. It would be a sign of things to come.

A slap shot via the stick of defenseman Lubomir Visnovsky briefly tied the game at 1-1, before the White team scored six unanswered (two courtesy of Teemu Selanne). Dan Sexton would score late for the Black team to end the game in favor of the White team 7-2.

“We worked really hard these last three days,” Sexton said. “The games have gotten more and more competitive and physical. It’s good that guys are battling against each other. Nobody is holding back and they’re trying to show what they have. When we get into the preseason game, we’re going to be really looking forward to playing against guys in other jerseys rather than our own. I think we’re going to be that much more ahead of the curve just because of these last three days.”

“We worked really hard these last three days,” Sexton (right) said. “The games have gotten more and more competitive and physical. It’s good that guys are battling against each other. Nobody is holding back and they’re trying to show what they have. When we get into the preseason game, we’re going to be really looking forward to play against guys in other jerseys rather than our own."
Sexton will be among the 20 Ducks who will suit up against the Coyotes. He was also in the lineup for the preseason opener last season (also at home against Phoenix). But that is mostly where the similarities end between the two seasons.

Signed as a college free agent out of Bowling Green in April 2009, the 5-10 winger entered camp one year ago as a relative unknown. He would go on to play a big part on the team in 2009-10, scoring nine goals and 19 points in 41 games, while gaining the admiration of fans and earning the nickname “Big Sexy” among his teammates.

“Last preseason, I was just thrilled to be able to be out there with those guys,” Sexton said. “You really are just happy to be there and happy to get one preseason under your belt. I did everything I could to play well and put myself in the best standing with the team.

“This time around it is different. It’s one of those things where you trying to be a little more experienced and poised with the puck. I’m trying to make more plays and not rely on other people to make them for me, which I did maybe more last year, which isn’t a bad thing. We have so many good players. It’s definitely a different mindset here. It takes a couple of days to knock the rust off, but I’m definitely hoping to keep improving through each day.”

“We’re going to go out there tomorrow and do the best with what we have. It’s always nice to go against the other team and you’re not in the locker room with the guys you’re playing against. It's the start of the preseason and the real season is right around the corner. It’s gone by fast and I think everybody is looking forward to it.” - Dan Sexton
With Sexton emerging as a goal-scoring threat last year, it has given the Ducks options moving forward into 2010-11. The club (under Carlyle) has traditionally had two scoring lines, a checking line and an energy line. But with the penchant for scoring among this group, Carlyle has already said he might employ a different approach with three scoring lines.

“You can’t deny the personnel that we have here,” Sexton said. “If guys are healthy, we have a lot of good forwards. Why not use them? As long as they are sound in the defensive zone, which I think most of us are. You’re not going to sacrifice anything in the defensive zone. If anything, you’re just going to get that much more offense out of the three lines.”

As the first preseason game draws near, those types of open-ended questions facing the Ducks lineup will start to emerge from the haze.

“We’re going to go out there tomorrow and do the best with what we have,” Sexton said. “It’s always nice to go against the other team and you’re not in the locker room with the guys you’re playing against. It's the start of the preseason and the real season is right around the corner. It’s gone by fast and I think everybody is looking forward to it.”

Note:
The Ducks host Phoenix tomorrow and San Jose on Wednesday in the club’s first two preseason contests of 2010 (radio broadcast at AnaheimDucks.com, 7:05 p.m. faceoff each night). Any veterans not playing are scheduled to greet fans at various locations throughout Honda Center prior to opening faceoff. Players will work in the box office, elevators, concession stands and other various locations (this applies to both contests).

SCHEDULE

HOME
AWAY
PROMOTIONAL

STANDINGS

WESTERN CONFERENCE
  TEAM GP W L OT GF GA PTS
1 z - ANA 82 54 20 8 266 209 116
2 y - COL 82 52 22 8 250 220 112
3 x - STL 82 52 23 7 248 191 111
4 x - SJS 82 51 22 9 249 200 111
5 x - CHI 82 46 21 15 267 220 107
6 x - LAK 82 46 28 8 206 174 100
7 x - MIN 82 43 27 12 207 206 98
8 x - DAL 82 40 31 11 235 228 91
9 PHX 82 37 30 15 216 231 89
10 NSH 82 38 32 12 216 242 88
11 WPG 82 37 35 10 227 237 84
12 VAN 82 36 35 11 196 223 83
13 CGY 82 35 40 7 209 241 77
14 EDM 82 29 44 9 203 270 67

STATS

2013-2014 REGULAR SEASON
SKATERS: GP G A +/- Pts
R. Getzlaf 77 31 56 28 87
C. Perry 81 43 39 32 82
N. Bonino 77 22 27 14 49
M. Perreault 69 18 25 13 43
A. Cogliano 82 21 21 13 42
C. Fowler 70 6 30 15 36
K. Palmieri 71 14 17 9 31
D. Winnik 76 6 24 6 30
H. Lindholm 78 6 24 29 30
S. Koivu 65 11 18 3 29
 
GOALIES: W L OT Sv% GAA
F. Andersen 20 5 0 .923 2.29
J. Hiller 29 13 7 .911 2.48
 

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