Because of a pair of quirks in the way the NHL standings operate, the Flames could LOSE to the Ducks Friday night and still move AHEAD of the Ducks in the Western Conference standings.
The first 2008 playoff race chart was handed out to the media at the Ducks’ practice today (details from practice in tomorrow’s notebook). The Chart shows where each Western Conference team stands in relation to the top eight spots, how many games each has remaining, points breakdowns and such. Here’s the skinny today; I’ll try to update these numbers as often as time permits.
Neither Ryan Carter nor Todd Marchant skated at the Ducks’ practice Thursday morning, and the news was particularly bad for Carter. An MRI on the rookie center revealed a fractured wrist, which he suffered on a freak injury in the first period Wednesday night against Colorado. Jeff Finger checked Carter into the boards next to the Ducks’ bench, where Carter’s wrist broke through a clear, hard shield covering a camera hole. There’s only eight camera holes around the rink, and Carter’s wrist found one of them on that play. There’s no timetable for his return; Randy Carlyle said he’ll miss at least “the next couple games.” The good news: He’s not expected to require surgery.
Marchant strained his shoulder late in the second period against Colorado. He’s out for Friday night, too.
More details in tomorrow’s notebook.
How on Earth did Ryan Carter get his wrist jammed into the photographer’s lenshole when he got checked into the boards by the Avs’ Jeff Finger tonight? HOW??
There’s only 8 lensholes, no more than 8″ wide, carved into the plexiglass boards at Honda Center. They’re supposed to be shut during the game, too, unless a photographer needs to poke his/her camera through them. And yet, somehow, Carter got checked into one of those exact 8 spots, got his wrist caught inside of it, and … we’ll wait for an MRI tomorrow. I have never heard of that happening before in an NHL game. Hopefully for Ryan, he’s OK.
Wondering if having 16,000 screaming kids at practice disrupts a team’s playing ability in the next game …
Last year’sFirst Flight Field Trip was held on February 21, 2007. The Ducks’ next game was played atDallason Feb. 23.Dallaswon that game 4-1.
Since that game was on the road, and tomorrow the Ducks play Colorado at home, it’s not a great scientific experiment. But if the Ducks lose, feel free to raise your eyebrows.
Teemu Selanne makes his Honda Center debut tonight, but he’s not all the way back to the form he flashed last year. At least, he doesn’t think so.
It’s Selanne’s first goal since making his season debut a week ago today and the 541st of his career. He ties Paul Kariya as the team’s all-time leading scorer (669 points). Ducks and Avalanche are tied, 1-1.
This just came across the desk…
According to Elias Stats Bureau, the Ducks were just the second visiting team in NHL history to defeat the three New York-area teams in a four-day span. The Nashville Predators were the first visiting team to pull off the four-day, three-game sweep in theNew Yorkarea, from Oct. 16-19, 2006. Of the 30 NHL visiting teams to play the Islanders, Rangers and Devils in a four-day stretch, only the DucksandNashvillehave won all three games.
So the Ducks are taking the annual Stanley Cup champions’ visit to see President Bush today. Among the ironic subplots to this visit:
Six (of 24) Ducks were born in America.
Their roster didn’t look like the Cup-winning roster until Teemu Selanne returned to the lineup Tuesday.
They haven’t played like the same team much of this season, though they did snap their winless streak by beating the Islanders 3-0 Tuesday. For the most part, the Red Wings have been the talk of the NHL.
Nobody’s talking about President Bush right now, either; they’re talking about the 4/5/6 people trying to take his job.
I think they’ll feel honored anyway.
He’s in the lineup RIGHT NOW, which has to feel good for Ducks fans. Five goals in the last six games isn’t going to cut it in the NHL, and the Ducks need more with Teemu in the lineup. No goals against the Isles through the first 10 minutes, but Selanne looks pretty good with Todd Bertuzzi and Doug Weight.
Chris Kunitz has moved up to the “top” line with Corey Perry and Ryan Getzlaf.
Brian Bochenski (healthy), Joe DiPenta (healthy) and Travis Moen (flu) are your scratches.