Ducks sign Mat Clark.

The Ducks signed defenseman Mat Clark to a three-year entry-level contract, which begins at the start of the 2010-11 season. Contract terms were not immediately available.

The 6-3, 211-pound blueliner had seven goals and 23 points with 88 PIM in 66 games for the Ontario Hockey League’s Brampton Battalion. He won the team’s defenseman of the year award, leading all club blueliners in goals and ranking second in points. Following the regular season, Clark was voted the Best Body Checker and Best Defensive Defenseman in the OHL’s Eastern Conference coaches’ poll. All seven of Clark’s goals this season came on the power play.

In six postseason games so far, Clark has two goals and six points with a plus-2 rating and nine penalty minutes, leading all club defensemen in scoring. The 19-year-old was selected by Anaheim in the second round (37th overall) of the 2009 draft.

Hiller, Getzlaf out; Levasseur in.

With Jonas Hiller staying in Anaheim because of back spasms that felled him in warmups Monday, the Ducks have recalled goaltender J.P. Levasseur from the Springfield (Mass.) Falcons of the American Hockey League.

Hiller has not been placed on injured reserve, but neither he nor center Ryan Getzlaf made the trip to Denver for Wednesday’s game against the Avalanche. Getzlaf has not played in the since re-injuring his left ankle in Vancouver last Wednesday.

The 23-year-old Levasseur went 8-16-1 with a 3.59 goals-against average and .896 save percentage for the Falcons. He recorded a 49-save shutout over the Bridgeport Sound Tigers on Feb. 14, but has mostly suffered during a last-place season in Springfield.

The 6-0, 199-pound netminder also appeared in five contests with Bakersfield of the ECHL (2-3-0, 3.63 GAA, .903 save pct.) and 16 games with Laredo of the Central Hockey League (10-3-3, 2.31 GAA, .919 save pct. this season.

Selanne passes the torch -actually, the puck.

Rarely does a metaphor write itself before your very eyes,
let alone before the eyes of 15,070 onlookers.

Teemu Selanne was the focus of attention even before the Ducks were set to play the Dallas Stars on Monday, when a pregame ceremony at
center ice recognized Selanne for becoming the 18th NHL player ever to score 600
goals. The man he was about to pass in the record books – Jari Kurri,
whose 601 goals are the most by a Finnish-born player – had flown in from Helsinki just for the occasion.

So who would have guessed that Selanne’s big moment would have come with a pass?

It was a very good pass too – more of a chip-shot to lift
the puck over the stick of Dallas defenseman Trevor Daley – that found Nick
Bonino, playing just the second game of his NHL career. The young center
promptly flicked the puck past Stars goalie Kari Lehtonen at 8:11 of the second period for career goal
number 1.

Back on the Anaheim bench, the 39-year-old sitting on goal number 600 handed the historic puck to the 20-year-old
now sitting on goal number 1, both flashing wide smiles.

In hockey, they do not pass torches. They pass pucks.
Continue reading “Selanne passes the torch -actually, the puck.” »

Ducks 3, Dallas 1.

Nick Bonino scored his first NHL goal, and Curtis McElhinney made the most of an emergency start, stopping 30 shots for his second straight victory as a Duck.

After Bonino’s power-play goal – off an assist from Teemu Selanne at 8:11 of the second period – the Ducks padded their lead to 3-0 with a pair of quick-strike goals by Corey Perry and Kyle Chipchura. Loui Eriksson broke the shutout at 14:48 of the third period on a great pass from behind the net by Mike Richards. After that six-minute, 37-second span of the second period, the scoring in the game was complete.

McElhinney was called upon after scheduled starter Jonas Hiller came down with back spasms in the pregame skate. The 26-year-old McElhinney, who had never before won back-to-back games in his three-year career as a backup in Calgary, is now 2-0 with a 2.44 goals-against average as a Duck.

Selanne was honored prior to the game at center ice for scoring his 600th career goal. After receiving an engraved plate from Ducks owners Henry and Susan Samueli, he received a framed poster from Jari Kurri commemorating his first goal and his 600th.

More on Kurri, Selanne and Bonino to come.

Some more notes:

Corey Perry equaled his single-season high in points (72).
Selanne has points in six of his last eight games (two goals, nine points), including the last three straight.
Lubomir Visnovsky has three goals and seven points in his last eight games.
McElhinney has a .955 save percentage and 1.50 GAA in his last two starts (both wins)
Anaheim matched Dallas in the standings with 80 points, nine behind eighth-place Colorado with seven games to play.

On this date (via AP).

Seventeen years ago, March 27, 1993, then-Winnipeg Jet Teemu Selanne scored his 69th and 70th goals of the season in a 3-3 tie
with the Kings. Selanne became the eighth player, and first rookie,
to have a 70-goal NHL season. No other player has scored 70 goals in a season since.

On a related note, check out this comparison of Selanne and fellow Finn Jari Kurri – who will be in Anaheim for the Ducks’ game against Dallas on Monday – in the Edmonton Journal.

Ducks 3, Edmonton 2.

The Ducks’ lineup looked different, and younger, in Edmonton than it has all season. In the end, a few familiar faces helped salvage a win at the end of a make-or-break road trip that has mostly served to break the Ducks’ playoff hopes.
Continue reading “Ducks 3, Edmonton 2.” »

Bonino, McElhinney in the lineup.

Rookie center Nick Bonino will make his NHL debut for the Ducks tonight in Edmonton wearing jersey #63.

Bonino, 21, just completed his junior season at Boston University, scoring a team-leading 11 goals and 38 points in 33 contests. The 6-1, 190-pound center will take the place of Ryan Getzlaf, who is nursing a high ankle sprain, and is expected to play on the Ducks’ top line with right wing Corey Perry and Bobby Ryan at left wing.

Also, Curtis McElhinney will get his first start between the pipes for the Ducks. The former Calgary Flames backup is 2-0 with a 1.87 goals-against average in his career against the Oilers.

Getzlaf out; Bonino in?

Ducks center Ryan Getzlaf will miss tonight’s game in Edmonton with a high ankle sprain, but according to the team Web site, he could return as early as Monday against the Dallas Stars.

Among the possible replacements are Ryan Carter and Nick Bonino, who has been traveling with the Ducks since signing an entry-level contract last week. Bonino, a center acquired in the trade that sent Kent Huskins and Travis Moen to San Jose, decided to forego his eligibility at Boston University to sign with Anaheim.

More on Rob Bordson.

From the Duluth News-Tribune:

Dave McNab, senior vice president of hockey operations for the NHL’s
Anaheim Ducks, says he was sold on Rob Bordson during a UMD home series
against Colorado College in January. Bordson, an undrafted junior
forward from Duluth, went on to have 12 goals and 28 assists for 40
points in 40 games this season.

McNab, a former Wisconsin goalie,
saw Bordson as a good pro prospect and completed a two-year, free-agent
signing Sunday in Duluth. After recording zero points in 15 games as a
sophomore, Bordson spent considerable time preparing for 2009-10 with
offseason conditioning.

“I saw a player who really came into his
own this season and is on the fast track to being a good pro player,”
McNab said. “We think he can make even bigger strides. He shoots well,
can score goals, definitely makes plays and can skate. We went out of
our way to make sure Rob knew we wanted him in our organization.”

figures he, along with Anaheim front office personnel and scouts,
watched Bordson in 24 games. The Ducks regard him as a center or left
winger. The former Duluth Marshall athlete reported to the Ducks on
Wednesday for a physical and begins practicing with the team Sunday. The
Ducks, with eight regular-season games remaining, will pay Bordson
approximately $4,000 a day while with the NHL team. He gave up his final
year of college eligibility.

New rule in effect tonight.

The NHL competition committee has given its approval to a new rule banning blind-side hits to the head, and the rule will go into effect for tonight’s games.

The rule states: “A lateral, back pressure or blind side hit to an opponent where the head is targeted and/or the principal point of contact is not permitted.” Any violation of the rule will be reviewed for possible fines or suspensions. Beginning next season, violations will also result in a minor or major penalty being called on the ice.

The league posted a video explaining the difference between legal and illegal hits.

“We believe this is the right thing to do for the game and for the safety of our players,” NHL Commissioner Gary Bettman said in a statement.

NHL general managers approved the rule earlier this month before it was approved by the NHLPA. The Players Association’s Executive Board released the following statement earlier today:

We fully support our Competition Committee Members’ endorsement of the League’s proposal to implement supplemental discipline this season for blindside hits to the head. Our agreement applies to the remainder of the 2009-10 NHL Regular Season, as well as the 2010 Playoffs. This temporary implementation will ensure that the joint NHLPA/NHL Competition Committee will have time to develop and consider a proper and full-time rule, one that includes an on-ice penalty component, this summer. We are encouraged by the League’s recent willingness to explore on-ice rule changes as a means of reducing Player injuries and have no doubt that by working together, a safer working environment can be established for all NHLPA Members.