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Ducks Will Possibly Make Some Lineup Tweaks for Game 3 in LA

Thursday, 05.08.2014 / 3:59 PM / News
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Ducks Will Possibly Make Some Lineup Tweaks for Game 3 in LA
With the Ducks down 2-0 to the Kings and the series shifting to Staples Center, Bruce Boudreau will likely do some tinkering with his lineup.
“It’s a huge game for us, and obviously for them as well,” Palmieri said. “You know the building is going to be excited. It’s their first time seeing Ducks-Kings in the playoffs, so it’s going to be a great atmosphere and we’ll hopefully get off to a good start tonight.”
By Adam Brady

LOS ANGELES - With the Ducks down 2-0 to the Kings and the series shifting to Staples Center, Bruce Boudreau will likely do some tinkering with his lineup.

Earlier, the Ducks sent winger Emerson Etem (who has gone scoreless in four playoff games) to Norfolk of the AHL and brought up defenseman Sami Vatanen, who could be on the ice for tonight’s Game 3. Meanwhile, all indications are that winger Kyle Palmieri will see his first action of the series, as he skated with Nick Bonino and Devante Smith-Pelly in skates yesterday and this morning.

"He's definitely an option," Boudreau said of Palmieri, who had 14 goals this season and, “I don't think he averaged more than 10 minutes a game.”

Boudreau said Palmieri could provide some firepower for a Ducks team that has only managed three goals in the series against red-hot LA goalie Jonathan Quick. “He's definitely got an above-average shot, and when he's feeling it, he's really good,” Boudreau said of Palmieri, who had five points in seven playoff games vs. Detroit last season. "He can skate, and for a non-tall guy, he's like a little fireplug out there. He's 200 pounds that can skate. He's not a soft player."

Palmieri had a goal in the opening game of the first round, but hasn’t played since Game 4 of that series with Dallas. He’s definitely raring to go tonight, especially in what will undoubtedly be an electric environment at Staples Center.

“It’s a huge game for us, and obviously for them as well,” Palmieri said. “You know the building is going to be excited. It’s their first time seeing Ducks-Kings in the playoffs, so it’s going to be a great atmosphere and we’ll hopefully get off to a good start tonight.”

Vatanen is another guy who could provide some offensive spark for Anaheim tonight. The 22-year-old had six goals and 21 points in 48 regular season games for the Ducks, who has not yet appeared in the postseason.

“Obviously it’s one of the dreams to play in the Stanley Cup Playoffs, and maybe I’ll get a chance today. I’ve got to use it and play my game, enjoy it and help the team win.”

Boudreau touched on Vatanen’s puck-moving ability this morning, and said, “He’s not as big or physical as the rest of them, but he brings more of an offensive game than other guys. He’s been on our power play as much as he’s been up here. He’s been always played that position.”

The 5-10, 183-pound Vatanen had three assists in five playoff games with Norfolk before his call-up. He endured a nine-hour flight yesterday from St. John’s, Newfoundland (where the Admirals were playing their second round series) through Toronto and into LAX. But he said he’s ready to go tonight if Boudreau calls upon him.

“I just need to play my game, and maybe bring some goals,” Vatanen said. “We’ll see. Let’s just try and go out there and have some fun.

“Obviously it’s one of the dreams to play in the Stanley Cup Playoffs, and maybe I’ll get a chance today. I’ve got to use it and play my game, enjoy it and help the team win.”

Palmieri acknowledged that it’s a must-win situation for the Ducks, who have to climb out of a bit of a hole after dropping Games 1 and 2 at Honda Center.

“There is definitely some desperation,” he said, “but it’s playoff time, so you go into every game with desperation. You never know when the momentum of a series will change. Hopefully tonight, that will be for us.”

SCHEDULE

HOME
AWAY
PROMOTIONAL

STANDINGS

WESTERN CONFERENCE
  TEAM GP W L OT GF GA PTS
1 NSH 61 41 13 7 186 143 89
2 ANA 62 38 17 7 182 174 83
3 STL 61 39 18 4 190 152 82
4 CHI 62 37 20 5 183 146 79
5 WPG 63 31 20 12 174 170 74
6 VAN 61 35 23 3 174 162 73
7 LAK 59 29 18 12 162 152 70
8 CGY 61 33 24 4 174 158 70
9 MIN 60 31 22 7 169 158 69
10 SJS 61 30 23 8 171 174 68
11 DAL 61 27 25 9 191 202 63
12 COL 61 26 24 11 161 175 63
13 ARI 62 20 35 7 137 210 47
14 EDM 62 18 34 10 142 206 46

STATS

2014-2015 REGULAR SEASON
SKATERS: GP G A +/- Pts
R. Getzlaf 59 19 39 9 58
C. Perry 47 24 17 12 41
R. Kesler 62 15 22 -4 37
S. Vatanen 57 12 22 6 34
M. Beleskey 56 21 9 13 30
P. Maroon 54 7 21 -3 28
H. Lindholm 59 6 22 19 28
J. Silfverberg 61 9 17 7 26
C. Fowler 61 5 21 -5 26
K. Palmieri 37 12 11 -1 23
 
GOALIES: W L OT Sv% GAA
F. Andersen 29 8 5 .916 2.37
J. Gibson 6 5 0 .915 2.69

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