Ebbett on the move again.

Center Andrew Ebbett, whom the Chicago Blackhawks claimed off waivers from the Ducks in October, was claimed off waivers by the Minnesota Wild today.

Ebbett had played 10 games in a Blackhawks uniform, scoring one goal and spending two minutes in the penalty box, before going on waivers Friday. A look at the standings reveals that Ebbett was available to the Ducks before the Wild claimed him.

The Blackhawks will visit Honda Center next Friday; the Ducks will face the Wild on the road Dec. 4 and at home Dec. 29.

Lupul adds to Ducks’ injury woes.

Already missing forwards Saku Koivu and Ryan Carter, left wing Joffrey Lupul sat out the Ducks’ practice Friday with an undisclosed lower-body injury.

“Just some soreness,” Lupul said. “I kind of know the drill. I don’t want to get into it too much, but it’s some soreness in my lower body. Hopefully it can be taken care of tomorrow.”

Lupul said the injury is not related to the recurring back stiffness that sidelined him in the preseason, but “wouldn’t rule myself out for tomorrow.”

Continue reading “Lupul adds to Ducks’ injury woes.” »

Stop what you’re doing and watch this goal.

This goal by Steven Stamkos has to be the most jaw-dropping goal I’ve ever witnessed in person.

Sadly, I didn’t drop my jaw.

It happened so fast that it was almost impossible to tell how Stamkos scored, sliding on his butt along the ice, in real time. Here was Jonas Hiller’s description of the goal, which brought the Tampa Bay Lightning to within 3-2 of the Ducks on Thursday at Honda Center:

“It was a play from behind the net; he shoots the puck and I think I made a pretty good save. It hit me right in the chest and bounced back. He fell backwards and just tipped it somehow. Sort of a lucky goal, but that’s what happens if you get in front of the net if you keep working for the rebounds.”

Note: Upon arriving home, I was not shocked to see this made SportsCenter’s #1 highlight.

Ducks 4, Tampa Bay 3, SO.

Scott Niedermayer fired the game-winner past Lightning goaltender Mike Smith 52 seconds into the extra period, and Jonas Hiller made 21 saves as the Ducks snapped a four-game losing streak at Honda Center.

Ryan Getzlaf and Teemu Selanne each finished with a goal and two assists as the Ducks improved to 7-10-3.

Christensen loaned to AHL

Center Erik Christensen has been loaned to the Manitoba Moose of the American Hockey League for conditioning purposes. Christensen will remain on the Ducks’ NHL roster, but can play in games and practice with Manitoba for a period of up to 14 days.

The 25-year-old had been held without a point in nine games for the Ducks this season, and was a healthy scratch the past two. Christensen was placed on waivers Nov. 2 but went unclaimed; without an AHL affiliate, it took some time for the Ducks to find Christensen a new home.

Sharp recalled; Koivu, Carter to IR.

Center MacGregor Sharp has been recalled from the Bakersfield Condors, the Ducks’ ECHL affiliate, while centers Saku Koivu and Ryan Carter have been placed on injured reserve retroactive to their last appearance — Nov. 11 for Carter and Nov. 7 for Koivu.

The 24-year-old Sharp ranked second on the Condors in points (14) and first in assists (10) through 15 games at the time of his recall. Signed as an undrafted free agent to a two-year entry-level contract on Mar. 31, Sharp finished tied for fourth in the nation last season with 50 points (26 goals) in 43 games with the University of Minnesota-Duluth.

Sharp also ranked second in the country in goals.

Koivu has been battling a groin injury, while Carter is recovering from a bruised foot. Both would be eligible to play tomorrow against the Tampa Bay Lightning.

Jury still out on meetings.

Sunday’s one-on-one player meetings between Randy Carlyle and the Ducks players weren’t prompted by a look at the standings. At least, not the won-loss column; Carlyle has held the meetings every year around the 20-game mark regardless of how many have tilted in the Ducks’ favor.

This year, the Ducks have won just 6 of 19 games (6-10-3) and like just about everything else Carlyle has tried, the meetings had little immediate impact.

“Probably not,” said Joffrey Lupul. “We came out and played probably our worst game of the year. But it was good to hear feedback from the coach and I’m sure he likes feedback from us. But at the end of the day, it’s about the results. And it’s definitely not the result we were looking for (Monday) night.

“We’ve had lots of meetings,” captain Scott Niedermayer added. “So far they haven’t been productive, but you have to try and get on the same page, and get the approach that’s going to work for this team to get out there and play well.”

So what did the coach gain?

“One-on-one meetings give you an opportunity to get feedback from players, and for you to give your feedback in a full one-on-one environment,” Carlyle said.

The return of Kyle Calder.

Kyle Calder had plenty to complain about.

At 5 a.m. Sunday, the telephone rang in an Anchorage, Alaska hotel room, informing Calder to grab the next flight to Pittsburgh to join the Ducks for Monday night’s game against the Penguins. Roughly an hour later, Calder was on his way to the airport. At midnight, he landed in Pittsburgh.

He arrived to a less-than-ideal NHL situation: The Ducks had lost three straight and made it four with a 5-2 loss to the defending Stanley Cup champs.

But Calder isn’t complaining.

“That’s the way the league is,” he said. “You have to be professional about it and go to work.”

Continue reading “The return of Kyle Calder.” »

Ducklings migrating from San Antonio

Some of the Ducks’ top prospects are flying north this winter.

Denied ice time by the Phoenix Coyotes’ prospects playing in San Antonio — the Coyotes’ AHL affiliate — Matt Beleskey, Troy Bodie and Brett Festerling have been re-assigned to the AHL’s Toronto Marlies. Additionally, Ryan Donally will be assigned to ECHL affiliate Bakersfield.

The Coyotes under new head coach Dave Tippett have gone with an older lineup, and several former young NHLers (Kyle Turris, Viktor Tikhonov, Mikkel Boedker, et. al.) have spent most or all of the season in San Antonio.

The Toronto Marlies are the AHL affiliate of the Toronto Maple Leafs.