The team still could not confirm the signing of Finnish goalie Iiro Tarkki as of this morning, but Tarkki’s agent appears to have confirmed it to a Finnish publication (thanks to Google translate).
Update (3 p.m.): The team has confirmed the signing. From the official release:
Well that didn’t take long.
Ray Emery was recalled from AHL affiliate Syracuse and will back up Curtis McElhinney tonight when the Ducks play the Kings. The move seemed inevitable after Emery’s 34-save effort last night for the Syracuse Crunch, his third start in five days after going 12 months without playing a live game.
Emery went 2-1-0 with a 2.62 goals-against average and .925 save percentage with the Crunch. He will wear number 36 with the Ducks.
“We didn’t think it was going to be this quick, but he’s played three hockey games, he’s played really well in them,” Ducks head coach Randy Carlyle told reporters this morning. “If we need him, we’re not afraid to put him in the net.”
Timo Pielmeier, who struggled in his first NHL appearance Saturday in St. Louis, was assigned to Syracuse.
Jonas Hiller, meanwhile, gave an update on his status Wednesday, telling reporters that the latest, most specific diagnosis of his “balance issue” is vertigo.
Curtis McElhinney and Timo Pielmeier were the only two goalies on the ice when the Ducks got back to practice Wednesday. No Ray Emery – he is still in Syracuse – and no Jonas Hiller, either.
Hiller is eligible to come off injured reserve prior to Wednesday’s game against the Kings, but that won’t happen. There seem to be mixed signals about just how long Hiller’s return from his latest ailment will take.
Ducks head coach Randy Carlyle sounded cautiously optimistic when he said of Hiller, “when he’s available to go on the ice, I haven’t got a timeframe for that, but we expect that to happen in the next little while. We don’t feel it’s going to be an extended period of time.”
Hiller has only played one full game since he first experienced symptoms of dizziness and light-headedness following the All-Star Game on Jan. 30. Recently, Hiller has been meeting with a therapist to deal with what the team is calling a “treatable balance issue.”
On Tuesday, he worked out off the ice then left Anaheim Ice just before his teammates finished practice. When asked for an update on his condition, the goalie didn’t offer any specifics, saying only that things are “not going the way I’d like them to.”
Still, Carlyle said it’s a “positive sign” that Hiller is being encouraged to work out and stay active, rather than completely refrain from any physical activity.
In a battle of field goals, the Ducks got their rear ends kicked.
The final scoresheet tells the story: The Blues wasted through Curtis McElhinney (11 shots, 7 saves) and Timo Pielmeier (12 shots, 7 saves) — who closed out the final two periods in his NHL debut — with equal fervor.
Goals by Jarkko Ruutu and Teemu Selanne in the game’s first 6:41 gave Anaheim an unmemorable 2-0 lead. The Blues scored four more before the first period was over, interrupted only by a Ryan Getzlaf wrist shot that ended Ty Conklin’s evening. The bleeding continued as Chris Stewart, T.J. Oshie and Andy McDonald all wrapped up two-goal efforts. Alex Steen, Carlo Colaiacovo and David Backes scored one apiece, and backup backstop Ben Bishop (20 shots, 20 saves) was perfect in relief of Conklin (5 shots, 3 goals).
The question now for the Ducks is, who can stop the bleeding?
A backup throughout his four-year NHL career, McElhinney clearly has hit the ceiling in his short time as a starter. In losing three consecutive starts, he’s allowed 16 goals on 68 shots — a miserable .765 save percentage and 6.90 goals-against average. Pielmeier wasn’t much better, though the 21-year-old was probably only viewed as an emergency option when he was recalled earlier in the week from AHL affiliate Syracuse.
Consider this an emergency.
The Ducks’ momentum officially took a turn for the worse Friday.
If the excuse of a back-and-forth game against a high-scoring Washington Capitals squad served as an excuse in Wednesday’s 7-6 loss in Anaheim, it was tougher to justify a 5-1 loss on the road to Minnesota. Corey Perry deflected a Bobby Ryan shot past Niklas Backstrom 3:30 into the game, but the Wild answered with five straight – including two on the power play and one short-handed – to ice the game.
Curtis McElhinney stopped 21 of 26 shots and looked no less vulnerable Friday than he did two days earlier. He allowed goals on consecutive shots by Eric Nystrom and Kyle Brodziak 27 seconds apart in the second period, making it a 4-1 game, and prompting Randy Carlyle to call timeout. Carlyle allowed his goalie to stay in, but one has to figure that the leash on McElhinney is a bit shorter now. Timo Pielmeier served as the backup for the second straight game, and he might well be the starter tomorrow night when the Ducks visit St. Louis.
Former Duck Matt Cullen, Martin Havlat and Mikko Koivu also scored for Minnesota. Koivu scored at 5:01 of the first period, then blocked an Andy Sutton shot at 7:09 and didn’t return. But the Ducks (32-23-4) couldn’t take advantage of a Wild squad (31-22-5) missing its best player.
The back-to-back losses mean the Ducks are still stuck in the same 68-point logjam at the bottom of the tight Western Conference playoff picture.
A few more notes:
The strange symptoms that shelved Jonas Hiller earlier this month — and perplexed the Ducks — have landed the goalie on injured reserve again.
Hiller was placed on the
injured list with light-headedness after the goalie reported symptoms at
Tuesday’s practice. He will miss at least the next three games and is
eligible to be activated on Monday. Timo Pielmeier was recalled from ECHL affiliate Elmira and figures to back up Curtis McElhinney tonight against the Washington Capitals.
The Ducks play back-to-back games Friday and Saturday in Minnesota and St. Louis, respectively.
Jonas Hiller was activated off injured reserve Friday, and the goaltender will be available for tonight’s game against the Calgary Flames. Hiller has missed the last two games after experiencing fatigue and light-headedness, while Curtis McElhinney has gone 2-0 against the Avalanche and Canucks as the starter. McElhinney could be in goal at the Saddledome tonight against his former team.
Timo Pielmeier, the backup to McElhinney the last two games, was assigned to ECHL affiliate Elmira. The Jackals are in Ontario this weekend for a rare West Coast road trip. Pielmeier did not appear in either game for the Ducks.
The Ducks placed goalie Jonas Hiller on injured reserve Tuesday retroactive to Feb. 3, as the goalie is still day-to-day with fatigue and light-headedness.
By placing Hiller on IR, the Ducks effectively ruled him out for tomorrow’s game in Vancouver, and opened up a roster spot for Timo Pielmeier without having to burn their second and final 48-hour emergency goaltender exception. (The Ducks burned their first last weekend, adding Pielmeier as the backup in Colorado, which temporarily put them over the 23-man roster limit).
Hiller will be able to return to the lineup Friday in Calgary if he’s deemed healthy. Hiller hasn’t played since the first 12 minutes of a 4-3 loss to San Jose last Wednesday.
Pielmeier was recalled from Elmira of the ECHL and figures to back up Curtis McElhinney against the Canucks.
The Ducks assigned Timo Pielmeier to ECHL affiliate Elmira on Sunday, mainly because it was more practical than assigning the goalie to AHL affiliate Syracuse.
The Crunch don’t play again until Friday. The Elmira Jackals will be playing Tuesday in Las Vegas, and Friday through Sunday in Ontario. Pielmeier served as the backup to Curtis McElhinney on Saturday in Denver while Jonas Hiller was dealing with fatigue symptoms. If Hiller is still ill by the time of the Ducks’ next game Wednesday (at Vancouver), Pielmeier will be closer to the West Coast – just in case.
If he’s still a Jackal by Friday, Pielmeier might face the Ontario Reign again for the first time since last season, when he regularly visited Ontario as a member of the Bakersfield Condors. The 21-year-old has appeared in 27 games for Syracuse this season, going 10-14-1 with
a 3.33 goals against average and .901 save percentage
Ducks goaltender Jonas
Hiller is suffering from fatigue and light-headedness and will be held out of tomorrow’s game in Denver against the Avalanche as a precaution. He is
Goaltender Timo Pielmeier has been recalled from Syracuse of the American Hockey League, and will likely be the backup to Curtis McElhinney. McElhinney played the final 48 minutes Wednesday in relief after Hiller allowed three goals on 10 shots in a 4-3 loss to the San Jose Sharks. Pielmeier has never appeared in a regular-season NHL game.
Adding Pielmeier gives the Ducks 24 players on their active roster. However, a team spokesperson relayed that the NHL allows a 48-hour goaltender exemption – during which teams can recall a goalie for up to 48 hours as the 24th player – twice per season. Pielmeier is eligible to
play because of the exemption.