Posts Tagged ‘chris pronger’

Per CapGeek, six teams, Detroit, Boston, Philadelphia, Pittsburg, San Jose and Los Angeles are currently over the cap. These teams have to move salary before the start of the season. This reality doesn’t necessarily mean a trade but a salary dump trade is one way to get cap compliant.

Five more teams are uncomfortably close to the cap limit such that moving players in and out of the lineup will pose problems. Washington, St. Louis and Toronto have less than $1m of cap space; Carolina $1,046m and New Jersey $1,379m.

Ducks GM Bob Murray has opined that ideally a team should have $1.5m in available cap space to accommodate player movement between the NHL and AHL. Murray’s comment was made when the cap was much higher than it is today. His opinion may not have changed because the league calculates and enforces the cap on per game basis.

Washington Capitals GM George McPhee says trade talk has picked up this week.

Via Katie Carrera, Washington Post:

“I had a couple calls [Tuesday] already and we’re just starting to pick up to see what teams are looking to do,” McPhee said. “We’ll see what happens over the next few days.”

McPhee also noted teams have a lot of options, other than trade, to get cap compliant or cap comfortable to accommodate player movement. For example Philadelphia can designate Chris Pronger LTIR and become cap compliant immediately. Boston could do the same with Marc Savard.

With increasing trade chatter among the GM’s the potential for trades also increases.

Our Ducks are a tad crowded at forward and a tad thin on the blue line. We’re one player over the roster limit of 23 and have a CapGeek estimate of $2.9m in available cap space. Structurally, Ducks are well positioned to make a move though I expect Murph will be patient through the 20 games into the season.

Leafs and Flyers are reportedly looking to move Dmen. We could do the Kings a good turn by taking Jake Muzzin off their payroll.

Ducks do run a tight ship leak wise but with so many cap stressed teams one has to assume Bob Murray is taking and making calls.



The players put on an exciting show for the fans in what was essentially a non-check scrimmage. When guys aren’t finishing their checks it makes it a bit difficult to get a complete bead on each player. What we’re doing here is reviewing pond hockey.
It’s the kind of hockey they play during workouts just prior to the opening of camps in September. During one of those pre-camp sessions, Chris Pronger complained, “I can’t wait until the hitting starts and put an end to this dipsy-doodle stuff.”

This was the third scrimmage and it was easy to see who had earned respect from the previous outings. Ducks first round pick Shea Theodore showed his ability to accelerate. The black jersey squad backed off almost every time he touched the puck. Theodore obviously has skill but we don’t know if he’ll stand-up under pressure from an opponent determined to make him less hungry for the puck.

Max Friberg was leaned on for his ability to accept the first pass and turn the play to attack. He may have scored a goal or two as well. In typical Pond Hockey fashion the only guys who kept stats are the players themselves. He’s not as fast as Cogliano but Friberg does move the biscuit from zone to zone similarly.

The guy who impressed me most with his wheels is Boston College grad Steve Whitney. Listed at just 5’7″ and 160#’s Whitney will have to score to win a job in the NHL. Jeez though, he showed ability to dart in and out of crowds, draw traffic to him and deke outside of danger with a shoulder fake. How Whitney will do when Francois Beauchemin is driving him into the boards is a story waiting to be written.

Peter Holland showed off his experience and skill with the puck. It went for naught as the Black jerseys beat the Whites 7-3. He setup a lot of scoring chances but the White squad just couldn’t finish on enough of them.

Hampus Lindholm is easily the smartest player on the ice today. He knows what to do in each situation. He plays well with and without the puck. His shot from the point won’t scare anybody but he did get most through to the net. What I liked seeing was his willingness to eat the puck in a couple of situations. A guy knows he’ll take a hit or two but when there’s no other option, you take one for the team.

Another prospect who looks to have the complete package is Irvine native Nicolas Kerdiles. He put all five skills on display. Kerdiles had his motor runnin’, showed basic and simple puck handling skill, wanted to hit but settled for tying up his opponent and he reads and reacts smartly.

Joseph Cramarossa put me in mind of a young Travis Moen. He was arguably the most physical guy out there. Next season he’ll be competing against men in the AHL so we’ll get a better read on his ability to compete physically at the pro level.

Rickard Rakell was solid if unspectacular. With a handful of NHL game experience, I expected Rakell to show a tad more.

The most pleasant surprise of the day was the performance of Antoine Laganiere . This kid looks like a Ryan Getzlaf with wheels. He drives to net. he shoots. He dishes off. He’s 6’4″ and packs 214#’s lean muscle on his bones.

Bruce Boudreau maintained a poker face. I watched him a bit but couldn’t get a read on what he was seeing.

I had a very enjoyable chat with a young goalie who plays here in SoCal. We shared some ideas about goal tending styles. Neither of us saw anything to write home about from Frederik Andersen, Igor Bobkov and Etienne Marcoux.

Overall, this was a performance for us fans. The real competition begins when cap opens in September.

Former Ducks stay-at-home, “Not in my kitchen, you don’t” Sean O’Donnell called it a day on playing portion of his NHL career. ‘Owe-dee” is too well liked and respected to think his days in NHL hockey are over. He prepared for media work in his final years as a player.

Always a cut-up, during  an interview with Chris Pronger as Owe-dee walks by and mutters, “Tell ’em how much you like playing with your partner.”

For 19 consecutive years Sean O’Donnell brought a lunch pail and a mischievous grin to the rink. He played through nagging injuries that would keep most of us in bed for a week.

Between 2005-2008 Owe-dee played 182 regular season and 43 playoff games with our Ducks. His value isn’t in the goals and assists but TOI, Hits and Blocked Shots, stats not readily available.

His playing career is over but hockey isn’t done with Sean O’Donnell.

Thought it might be fun to chat about hockey instead of the business of hockey. We’ll take one position at a time. Offer up some nominees and maybe come up with a first and second All Star 5-man units. As I’m a believer in building a hockey team from the blue line out, that’s where we’ll start.
Obviously Scott Niedermayer and Chris Pronger anchor our Ducks first team All Time All Stars. If you could only choose one to build on who would you take?

As for our Ducks second team All Time All Stars, the initial nominees are:

Keith Carney: Among my personal faves, along with Steve “Spud” Thomas, nobody got more from his talent and skill set than Keith Carney.

Lubomir Visnovsky: His time with us was short but he gave us a great year and struggled through injuries thereafter. Lubo holds the Ducks single season records for Most Points and Most Goals by a D-man.

Oleg Tverdovsky: Ducks chose Double O 2nd overall in 1994 Entry Draft. He gave us one good and two great seasons scoring 14 and 15 goals and over 50 total points in 1998-99 and in 1999-2000.

Dimitri Mironov: “Tree” came to our Ducks after not quite clicking in Pittsburgh. From 1996-98 he was our Ducks #1 D-man. Along with Teemu Selanne and Paul  Kariya, Mironov formed one the NHL’s most feared PP units.

You’re welcome to nominate your own.

The depth chart is fairly easy to project. Absent is a clear #1 who goes over the boards in all situations. Our new Ducks back line is a D by committee. Such is life after the departures of first Chris Pronger, followed by the retirement of Scott Niedermayer. In hindsight we were sure treated to something very special. Given the talent and complimentary skill sets of the survivors, at least Frankie Beachemin is a link to the Prongs/Nieds era taking Lubo back may not be the worst thing, if that be the outcome. The old cliche’  ‘Sometimes the best trades are the ones you don’t make’ is appropriate.
For now at least, lets address what is in front of us. Even if Lubo returns, it will remain a D by committee. As of this moment, Cam Fowler is the last guy you use in all situations.
Beauchemin heads the depth chart as he’s the most serviceable in all situations. He’s become a smart hockey player willing to sacrifice for his team. In that sense Beauch is a genuine heart and soul guy out there. Beauch will most likely continue to partner with Cam Fowler in ES situations and Bryan Allen or Luca Sbisa when Gabby wants to counter with physical match-ups
Cam Fowler is No. 2 with a bullet as they say in music. Cam will see ES time with Beauch, but Coach won’t be shy about sending Fowler out there with Allen or Sbisa. Expect to see him sharing 1st unit PP time with Sheldon Souray. Also don’t be surprised if Cam is out there for an entire PP. One thing Fowler has is the ability to pace himself and impact the tempo of the game.
I could be wrong of course but it doesn’t make a lot of sense to pair Fowler with Lydman. Cam needs a physical presence beside him. Also next to Fowler, Lydman might be our best play-making D-man. It could be tempting to toss them out against the opposition’s depth lines though. Lydman might also see some PP time with Cam behind Souray.
Such is life with D by committee. There are always spot situations where you can stray from the script.
At ES, Souray is most likely anchoring the 3rd unit with one of Lydman, Allen, or Sbisa.
PK units are from Beauchemin, Sbisa, Allen, Lydman.

At risk of restating the obvious, Coach and Brad Lauer have a lot of options. The challenges are also obvious. Those six guys will share 4920 minutes of TOI over 82 games. OT is excluded. As the minutes are divided up (apparently divied isn’t a word) the spread might be Souray at 14-16 minutes and the top TOI at 24-26 minutes. Nate Guenin looks to be the leading candidate 7 on the depth chart. He’s pushed by Jordan Hendry and Mat Clark.
Our Ducks D depth-wise is better now than at any time during the post Hall of Fame D era.

via Ducks Daily Blog

As you have probably noticed, a “Fire Ducks’ GM Bob Murray” petition has been making its rounds through the twitterverse lately, fueled by writers over at Anaheim Calling. It recently picked up even more steam when Puck Daddy spotlighted the endeavor. As of the time of this writing, it has gathered over 300 signatures.

Dobias chronicles the positives that have occurred under Murray’s watch. It’s a good read.

via BackCheck @SlashSkater on Twitter –


Hey Jared, as a law clerk your eloquent, though half-hearted defense of Barstool Bob is the best I’ve read to date.
It is the conventional view that Burke left our Ducks in a cap-challenged mess, we don’t know what Burke would have done to resolve it. IE, I can’t imagine Burke trading Pronger, maybe he would have let Scotty retire if not for Henry “working quietly behind the scenes” Samueli.

Note: It isn’t necessary to always agree with somebody to appreciate their talent. Jared Dobias at Ducks Daily is a fine advocate.

In other news…

a real trade happened yesterday and none of the Gossip Girls had predicted it. St. Louis Blues sent depth forward BJ Crombeen and its 4th round Entry Draft pick in 2013 to Tampa Bay Lightning for the Bolts 4th round picks in 2013 and 2014.

Various corporate media sources are reporting interest in Dallas Stars power forward Brendan Morrow. File this as plan D for those teams not acquiring one of Shane Doan, Rick Nash or Bobby Ryan. Ducks fans will recall that Coach Babcock slotted Morrow alongside Perry &  Getzlaf on Canada’s 2010 gold medal Olympic team.

NHL Trade Report reveals Rick Nash’s shortlist of teams he’d accept a trade to is reportedly the Detroit Red Wings, San Jose Sharks, Philadelphia Flyers, Pittsburgh Penguins, Boston Bruins, and the New York Rangers.
I believe it kinda, sorta as the list makes sense. It still has the feel of a “Mom Gives Birth to Alien Love Child” tabloid story. 

It was just one of those 30 teams in 30 words capsule that speak volumes to our Ducks. From the magnificent mind of THN’s Ken Campbell:

Anaheim: The gap between the talent level on paper and the results on the ice, on a year-by-year basis, might be the largest in the NHL.

The obvious inference is that we’re wrong about the talent level. This blog remains the only place for Ducks coverage where the transition from Brian Burke to Bob Murray included a change from a team powered from the blue line to a team powered down the middle has been chronicled. I don’t believe that I’m the only person who gets this but I’m the only blogger who’s covered it. (more…)