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Tarkki Quickly Thrust Into Ducks Net

Monday, 01.09.2012 / 6:10 PM / News
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Tarkki Quickly Thrust Into Ducks Net
By Matt Vevoda
AnaheimDucks.com


Iiro Tarkki’s Sunday was a whirlwind he will not soon forget.

“I didn’t expect this to happen so fast, but I’m glad,” Tarkki said. “I was a little bit nervous when I heard I was going in. It’s pretty amazing. I’m glad we got the win.”
The 26-year-old goaltender began the day flying across the country from Syracuse to Southern California (along with forwards Kyle Palmieri and JF Jacques), after being called up to the NHL for the first time in his career. He would get a welcomed surprise before the day was complete, his first career win in the league.

Anaheim had a need for Tarkki after Dan Ellis suffered a strained groin in practice on Saturday, an injury that is expected to keep him out approximately four weeks. The Finnish rookie was forced into his first game action last night with about a minute and a half left in the first period, when starting netminder Jonas Hiller was also injured (lower body) while making a spectacular save on Rick Nash.

“I didn’t expect this to happen so fast, but I’m glad,” Tarkki said. “I was a little bit nervous when I heard I was going in. It’s pretty amazing. I’m glad we got the win.”

Though he allowed a power play goal on his first shot against, which came early in the second period, Tarkki settled down and provided some key saves for the Ducks en route to a 7-4 victory. “Iiro flying all day and not expecting to play, the excitement of dressing for a first NHL game, then getting thrust into the situation, I think he did pretty admirably,” said Ducks goaltending consultant Pete Peeters.

Watch post-practice video from Monday

During Monday morning’s optional practice at Honda Center, Tarkki worked extensively with Peeters in getting up to speed on technique and other nuances of being an NHL goaltender. It is not known if Hiller, who is receiving treatment from the training staff, will be able to go tomorrow night against the Stars in Anaheim’s homestand finale. If he does not, Tarkki would be in line for his first career start.

“Of course, that is why I came here,” said Tarkki, who signed a one-year contract with Anaheim back on May 6, 2011. “When I first went to Syracuse, I thought I had to work hard there and play good games. If I did that, I was pretty sure I was going to get a shot here. Maybe it happened a little sooner than I thought.”

“Of course, that is why I came here,” Tarkki said. “When I first went to Syracuse, I thought I had to work hard there and play good games. If I did that, I was pretty sure I was going to get a shot here. Maybe it happened a little sooner than I thought.”
Much like Hiller when he came to the Ducks back in 2007, Tarkki is not your prototypical rookie goaltender. He spent seven seasons between three teams in the Finnish Elite League, with his best campaign coming in 2010-11 as a member of the Espoo Blues (20-20-14 record, 2.09 goals-against average, .924 save percentage and five shutouts in 55 games played).

With both Hiller and Ellis returning to the team from last season, Tarkki was sent to Syracuse after training camp and has performed respectably for the Crunch as their No. 1 goaltender. He posted a 9-11-1 record, 2.85 goals-against average, .916 save percentage (SV%) and one shutout in 23 games with Syracuse.

“Iiro is not like an 18- or 19-year-old,” Peeters said. “He’s definitely made a name for himself in Europe. There are a lot of young players in the American Hockey League. He had a lot of adapting to do. I think he’s done very well. From all reports that I hear in Syracuse, early on in the year he was just outstanding. It’s just a matter of getting comfortable. Once you get comfortable and the confidence comes, you never know what can happen.”

Traversing over uncharted territories in his career, Tarkki is excited for what the future holds here in Anaheim. But before that possibility of a first career start comes, he hopes to get a little relaxation in tonight after a couple of busy days of travel and hockey.

“I’m going to go back to the hotel and get a good rest there,” Tarkki said. “What happens tomorrow, happens. I haven’t thought about it that much. I know we have a game and I will be glad if I’m starting. It would be nice for me.”



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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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