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Practice Report: Ducks, Honda Center Ready for Game 1

Tuesday, 04.15.2014 / 1:40 PM PT / News
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Practice Report: Ducks, Honda Center Ready for Game 1
PHOTOS FROM PRACTICE
By Kyle Shohara
AnaheimDucks.com

On the eve of Game 1 of the first round of the playoffs, the Ducks took to the ice for a practice that had the look – and feel – of postseason hockey.

Honda Center’s ice is emblazoned with “Stanley Cup Playoffs” on each end, and the exterior of the building is wrapped in playoff-themed graphics. Meanwhile, the hallway outside the Ducks locker room was buzzing with a significantly larger group of television crews and media members eagerly awaiting player interviews.

And on the ice, head coach Bruce Boudreau led his team through a spirited workmanlike practice that lasted approximately 60 minutes.

The Ducks are a season removed from a heartbreaking first-round loss to the Detroit Red Wings, one that spawned the motto “Unfinished Business” throughout training camp and the regular season. Boudreau says last year’s early exit drove home the point that losing “isn’t fun,” but he feels his team is ready to take the next step.

“We’re ready and prepared,” he said. “They’ve played all year for this. We know we’re playing a really good opponent. I think we’ll make it a series.

“We’re deep, and I think we’ve proved we can play with most teams throughout the course of the year. The confidence that they can win is there.”

Teemu Selanne begins his final Stanley Cup Playoffs, and the 43-year-old, who was honored by the fans on Sunday night for his regular season finale, is eager to begin one last quest for a championship.

“This is the best time for hockey players,” he said. “You’ve got to enjoy every day and every moment. Every little thing matters. Even a little thing can turn the whole series around.”

Selanne uses the Francois Beauchemin-Jarome Iginla fight from the 2006 postseason as an example of how any one thing can change the momentum of an entire series. The Ducks were down, 3-2, in the series, when Beauchemin dropped Iginla with a vicious left a minute into the game. The Ducks wound up winning the contest, 2-1, then went on to blank the Flames, 3-0, in Game 7 at Calgary.

“The Calgary guys were big, strong and mean, and suddenly Beauchemin wins the fight,” Selanne said. “We felt they got smaller and weaker. We won the series. One thing here and there can make a big difference. That’s why the playoffs are what they are.”

Selanne says this current Ducks squad has that it factor that can take them as far as they want to go.

“I don’t think this team has any limits,” he said. “We can be as good as we want to be. It takes a lot of work and pride to do your job. In the playoffs, it doesn’t matter if you play four minutes or 25 minutes. Just do as good as you can, and give back to the team. You can’t ask for more than that.”

ROBI REUNION
Ducks defenseman Stephane Robidas knew there was a chance he’d face his former team in the playoffs when he was traded to Anaheim on March 4 for a conditional fourth-round pick in the 2014 NHL Draft.

And while he’ll see plenty of familiar faces on the other end of the ice tomorrow night, the 37-year-old blueliner says he’s just happy to have a chance at a Stanley Cup. Robidas has played in 44 career Stanley Cup Playoff games, earning 15 points (3g/12a) with 42 penalty minutes.

“I’m just excited to be in the playoffs,” he said. “It’s been five years, and I’ve been waiting for this moment for a long time. When I got traded here, I knew I was going to be in the playoffs. But it’s not about me. It’s about the Ducks.”

Robidas knows the Stars better than anyone else, and says they have skill up and down the lineup.

“They have lots of speed, skill, hard workers, good defensemen who can move the puck, and good goaltending,” he said. “They have good depth. They finished as the eighth seed, but you can’t take them for granted. It’s a good, young team.”

TRAFFIC ADVISORY
With the Ducks and Angels starting at the same time tomorrow night, fans are encouraged to arrive at Honda Center early to avoid traffic complications. In addition, there will be pre-game presentations that fans won’t want to miss.

SCHEDULE

HOME
AWAY
PROMOTIONAL

STANDINGS

WESTERN CONFERENCE
  TEAM GP W L OT GF GA PTS
1 z - DAL 82 50 23 9 267 230 109
2 x - STL 82 49 24 9 224 201 107
3 x - CHI 82 47 26 9 235 209 103
4 y - ANA 82 46 25 11 218 192 103
5 x - LAK 82 48 28 6 225 195 102
6 x - SJS 82 46 30 6 241 210 98
7 x - NSH 82 41 27 14 228 215 96
8 x - MIN 82 38 33 11 216 206 87
9 COL 82 39 39 4 216 240 82
10 ARI 82 35 39 8 209 245 78
11 WPG 82 35 39 8 215 239 78
12 CGY 82 35 40 7 231 260 77
13 VAN 82 31 38 13 191 243 75
14 EDM 82 31 43 8 203 245 70

STATS

2015-2016 REGULAR SEASON
SKATERS: GP G A +/- Pts
R. Getzlaf 77 13 50 14 63
C. Perry 82 34 28 2 62
R. Kesler 79 21 32 5 53
R. Rakell 72 20 23 -1 43
J. Silfverberg 82 20 19 8 39
S. Vatanen 71 9 29 8 38
A. Cogliano 82 9 23 2 32
H. Lindholm 80 10 18 7 28
C. Fowler 69 5 23 -8 28
C. Stewart 56 8 12 2 20
 
GOALIES: W L OT Sv% GAA
F. Andersen 22 9 7 .919 2.30
J. Gibson 21 13 4 .920 2.07

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