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Duck Blog: Anaheim Calling
Hello old friend, we meet again.
Last week, I was reminiscing about our old battles with the Blackhawks. As good as they are (or were?), that was always some fun hockey to watch at times. Detroit and Chicago don't like each other, but at least there feels like there was some respect out there on the ice. As for Detroit and tonight's opponent Anaheim? hahahahahahahahahahahaha
The only thing I miss about the Ducks is being able to kick their asses more than twice a year. I miss being able to watch Ryan Getzlaf and Corey Perry be complete idiots. I miss Teemu Selanne crying up and down the ice. Sure, as far as the first two go, I can just turn on GCL and watch them melt down every game if I wanted to, but it really just isnt the same unless they're doing it against our beloved Red Wings.
Rivalry aside, the Ducks are actually a decent hockey team. They have a sound 10 point lead in the Pacific division. They've won two straight, but are only 5-4-1 in the month of February. They're probably not going to be caught. Once again there should be playoff hockey in Anaheim. That's a good thing. These games are a lot more fun when both teams are good.
There's also a new level of douchiness to the Ducks this season too. Livonia native Ryan Kesler now resides in Orange County and gives us another reason to love to hate the Ducks. Anahiem has been dealing with some injuries as of late too. Defenseman Sami Vatanen is out for the next month or so, this team will likely be buyers at the deadline. Not only competition for the Wings tonight, but competition for a right shooting d-man too.
As far as the Wings go, it could be a much less talented lineup on the ice tonight. Henrik Zetterberg left Saturday night's game against Dallas after taking a few cheap shots from Jamie Benn. The team hasn't officially ruled it a concussion, but they're taking precautions. Zetterberg didn't practice yesterday. Neither did Teemu Pulkkinen. He hurt his leg in a collision with Jordie Benn.
What the hell Benn family?
Mike Babcock didn't rule either player out, but I wouldn't hold my breathe. It's likely the lineup gets a big shake-up (see the practice lines from Sunday below) and the Red Wings challenge just got a lot tougher.
The Expected Lineups
|Tomas Tatar||Pavel Datsyuk||Darren Helm|
|Gustav Nyquist||Riley Sheahan||Justin Abdelkader|
|Drew Miller||Luke Glendening||Tomas Jurco|
|Daniel Cleary||Joakim Andersson||Stephen Weiss|
|Niklas Kronwall||Jonathan Ericsson|
|Jakub Kindl||Danny DeKeyser|
|Brendan Smith||Alexi Marchenko|
|Jimmy Howard (starting)|
Injuries: Henrik Zetterberg (upper body), Teemu Pulkkinen (leg), Johan Franzen (headaches)
|Patrick Maroon||Ryan Getzlaf||Kyle Palmieri|
|Davante Smith-Pelly||Ryan Kesler||Corey Perry|
|Andrew Cogliano||Richard Rakell||Jakob Silfverberg|
|Rene Bourque||Nate Thompson||Tim Jackman|
|Cam Fowler||Ben Lovejoy|
|Hampus Lindholm||Francois Beauchemin|
|Clayton Stoner||Josh Manson|
|DUCKS||THE MATCH-UP||RED WINGS|
|37-16-7 (81 pts; 1st in Pacific)||Record||33-14-10 (76 pts; 3rd in Atlantic)|
|2.85 (9th in NHL)||Goals Per Game||2.93 (6th in NHL)|
|2.72 (19th)||Goals Against Per Game||2.47 (8th)|
|18.1% (18th)||Power Play %||26.0% (1st, bitches)|
|81.5% (15th)||Penalty Kill %||83.0% (10th)|
|Corey Perry (24 goals)||Goal Leader||Tomas Tatar (24 goals)|
|Ryan Getzlaf (57 points)||Points Leader||Henrik Zetterberg (49 points)|
- The Red Wings are 48-21-7-2 (W-L-T-OTL) all-time in the regular season against the Anaheim Ducks franchise.
- Last 10 Games: Anaheim 5-4-1, Detroit 6-3-1
- Howard is 9-4-1 all-time against the Ducks in the regular season with a 2.08 GAA, .930 SV% and 3 shutouts.