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Anaheim Ducks

Anaheim Ducks – Crazy Month Was January!

Anaheim DucksMy sincerest apologies for not writing at all about the Ducks during January. My motherboard hit the skids, which means I lost my hard drive. Which means: new computer! Then, since I have the best luck ever with computers, my modem and router went out on the same day. Yep – the day I finally got my fixed computer back from the shop. So I’ve been trying to get my computer back to what I am used to, as well as figure out all of my passwords….so I can change them all. I guess it’s a good thing I waited until the end of January to update you all on the Anaheim Ducks.

December 31st – where I left off….. well, it was great going to my first away game. Dallas won the game, but Anaheim played ok. Hiller was good in the net – Turco made an amazing diving save. I liked the arena the Stars have and the fans were wicked cool to me. Yes, even in my Ducks away jersey…..

I will not bore you with a game by game, since I’ve been off for a month. But I will update on some of the big happenings for the Anaheim Ducks and we’ll go from there.

• Joffrey Lupul had his back surgery, then developed an infection; this puts him out indefinitely. Ummmm, yeah. Then why was he on TMZ out on the town with a lady friend?? If the man is well enough to go to an LA hotspot, then he needs to be re-evaluated by a doctor. His team needs points and he’s…well….not at home resting??? He needs to take class and professionalism lessons from Teemu Selanne.

• Speaking of Selanne, he came back from his broken finger. For about 3 games before he broke his friggin’ jaw!! People! Can’t the man get a break? (no pun intended!) As of the end of January, he is back skating with the team, along with the requisite face shield, trying to get back into condition. He lost 13lbs from having his jaw wired shut. Where he lost it from is still uncertain…..

Big news this weekend: the goalie controversy has finally been resolved.

• The Ducks signed Jonas Hiller to a 4 yr/$18 extension, thereby making him the #1 goalie in Duckland. He is the future in regards to the net for Anaheim. He’s been playing almost every game for quite a while now. And he was AMAZING on the back to backs played Jan 9th and 10th – Predators and Blackhawks, respectively. So good he was named the NHL 2nd Star of the Week. (Considering the weekend before, the Ducks lost to these teams, it was great to see them play so well.) So, three years into his NHL career, Jonas Hiller is a #1 goal tender. Congrats to him and the Anaheim Ducks.

• However, the flip side of the coin is that JS Giguere was traded today to the Toronto Maple Leafs. Not such a surprise where he went. I was surprised how fast he was traded (after the Hiller signing) and how sad I was to see him leave. He is an Anaheim Duck icon – he pulled them into the 2003 playoffs and took them to the Stanley Cup win. I’ve had the pleasure of meeting him and he is exactly what people have said all day today: a classy guy. He’ll be reunited with Francois Allaire (who I lamented his leaving, knowing one or both of the goalies would follow) and he will be mentoring yet another Jonas. He’s closer to home, will get to play and yeah – it’s better for him. Good luck to Jiggy and his family.

• The Giguere trade came with Vesa Toskala and Jason Blake from the Leafs. I’ve seen Toskala in the net and for the season, he will be a good backup for Hiller. The Ducks will be able to dump him after the season; between that and Giguere, there is more money freed up. However, my concern is that Pogge is still in third position. My ideal situation??? Dump Pogge as well at the end of the season. Bring up Timo Pielmeier as backup to Hiller. I think he’s ready and learning under Hiller would be good. Make Marco Cousineau or Jean-Philippe Levasseur the third position goalie.

• Jason Blake – I know nothing about. I’ll wait and see him on the ice. The downside is that we sent Dan Sexton back down in order to make room for Blake. Considering how well Sexton has been playing, this Blake guy better step it up.

• Bobby Ryan is not locked up yet, but there is time for that still. Jiggy’s trade makes more money available for Ryan’s contract.

• Ryan Whitney needs either a kick in the ass or a trade. Sorry, but I don’t think he is worth the $4 mil we are paying him.

• James Wisniewski – shootout king!! He has won 2 games in the shootout for the Ducks. What’s even more fun is watching this D man AFTER the winning shot. So, he’s 2 for 2. 100%! Pretty good if you ask me!

The Ducks are sending numerous players to the Olympics this year; one of the few teams with numerous athletes!

• USA – Bobby Ryan (the second American player in franchise history to be selected)
• Canada – Scott Niedermayer (Captain), Ryan Getzlaf and Corey Perry
• Finland – Saku Koivu (Captain) and Teemu Selanne (Alternate)
• Switzerland – Jonas Hiller and Luca Sbisa

None of these were a shock, really. Perry maybe, but he played like a fiend in the beginning of the season. This Olympics will be hard on me; I’ve met these players and want them all to succeed. But, I can’t wait, either……

This month was up and down for the Ducks. We are still 4 points (at last look) out of a playoff spot. This shakeup may be the start of something, much like last year’s trades did. (I still don’t know WHY Pronger was traded. Can we get him back?????? I digress) If history is going to repeat itself, then the Ducks will find themselves barely in the 8th position. Again.


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