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Posted On Wednesday, 02.05.2014 / 2:57 PM

By Curtis Zupke - Correspondent / - 2013-2014 At the Rink Blog

Ducks recall Etem for key game against Blackhawks

ANAHEIM -- Welcome back, Emerson Etem. Now go play the Chicago Blackhawks.

Etem was recalled in time to join the Anaheim Ducks for a game against Chicago on Wednesday at Honda Center. It will be his first NHL game since Dec. 9. Etem was re-assigned after that partly because the Ducks wanted to see more consistency and partly because their lineup is difficult to crack.

"I think as a young guy you just need to understand the situation," Etem said. "We got a lot of depth up here. I think that all the guys that are regulars on this roster deserve to be here. For me, being a young guy I just try to keep my mouth shut, bury my head and work hard. Whatever they tell me to do I'm willing to do. I take pride in being a hometown guy and putting on the Ducks sweater every time I get the opportunity. It's a huge opportunity for me [Wednesday]."

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Posted On Monday, 02.03.2014 / 2:52 PM

By Curtis Zupke - Correspondent / - 2013-2014 At the Rink Blog

Kings switch defensive pairs for Blackhawks

EL SEGUNDO, Calif. -- Not much else has worked in generating offense for the Los Angeles Kings, so why not a change on the blue line?

It appears coach Darryl Sutter will tweak his defensive pairings when the Kings host the Chicago Blackhawks on Monday (10 p.m. ET, NHLN-CA) at Staples Center. Drew Doughty played with Willie Mitchell while Jake Muzzin was with Matt Greene in the morning skate.

"Drew's playing a lot of minutes and he needs a little bit more stability in his own zone from his partner," Sutter said.

Muzzin and Greene have played together earlier this season and in the Stanley Cup Playoffs last season, but it has been a while since Doughty has played with Mitchell.

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Posted On Tuesday, 01.28.2014 / 3:42 PM

By Curtis Zupke - Correspondent / - 2013-2014 At the Rink Blog

Ducks' Sbisa hoping to make instant impact

ANAHEIM -- One look at the game log for Anaheim Ducks defenseman Luca Sbisa says that it hasn't been a memorable season so far. He sprained his ankle during a preseason game, came back for nine games and then tore a tendon in his right hand in a fight Nov. 22.

"If you look back at how the year's going so far, to be honest, it's been terrible," Sbisa said. "It's definitely not the way I pictured the year going. But things like this happen. There's still a lot of games left and hopefully a lot of playoff games left, and I think I can show up and play well and really help the team out."

Sbisa will be back in the Ducks lineup when they host the Minnesota Wild on Tuesday. Sbisa has been a part of Anaheim's banged-up defense, along with Sheldon Souray, but the team hasn't missed a beat thanks to the emergence of rookie Hampus Lindholm and veteran Mark Fistric.

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Posted On Thursday, 01.23.2014 / 2:58 PM

By Curtis Zupke - Correspondent / - 2013-2014 At the Rink Blog

Ducks like physical presence of Maroon vs. Kings

ANAHEIM -- The Anaheim Ducks aren't lacking for big power forwards in their lineup but it certainly helps that Patrick Maroon is grabbing a hold of his role in time to play the Los Angeles Kings.

The 6-foot-3, 230-pound Maroon brings a wrecking-ball presence, along with a scoring touch, and it will be needed when Anaheim hosts the Kings at Honda Center on Thursday (10 p.m. ET, NHLN-US), the last time they'll meet until their game Saturday at Dodger Stadium in the opener of the 2014 Coors Light NHL Stadium Series.

Maroon has played with Mathieu Perreault and Teemu Selanne and also taken turns on the Ducks' top line with Ryan Getzlaf and Corey Perry.

"He's been doing a real good job," Anaheim coach Bruce Boudreau said. "I have to say in the last four or five games he might be our best forward."

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Posted On Wednesday, 01.15.2014 / 3:20 PM

By Curtis Zupke - Correspondent / - 2013-2014 At the Rink Blog

Ducks' Hiller could be sidelined by flu

ANAHEIM -- Jonas Hiller's record winning streak might have to be put on hold.

Hiller will be a game-time decision Wednesday against the Vancouver Canucks because of illness, Anaheim Ducks coach Bruce Boudreau said after his team's morning skate.

"He wasn't feeling good this morning so we said, 'Stay home,'" Boudreau said. "It'll be a game-time decision. We'll know this afternoon whether he's still feeling flu-ish or if he feels fine to go."

Asked if he's checking in on Hiller every hour, Boudreau said, "Probably every half-hour."

Hiller tied four others Sunday for the second-longest winning streak in NHL history with his 14th consecutive victory. The last goalie to win 14 in a row was Tom Barrasso of the Pittsburgh Penguins in 1992-93. Gilles Gilbert of the Boston Bruins won 17 straight in 1975-76.

If Hiller isn't available, Anaheim has Frederik Andersen and rookie John Gibson to go with.

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Posted On Sunday, 01.12.2014 / 7:48 PM

By Curtis Zupke - Correspondent / - 2013-2014 At the Rink Blog

Ducks' Getzlaf scratched with lower-body injury

ANAHEIM -- Anaheim Ducks captain Ryan Getzlaf was scratched from the game Sunday night against the Detroit Red Wings at Honda Center and is day-to-day with a lower-body injury, the Ducks announced.

Getzlaf took a shot off his foot in the second period Saturday night against the Phoenix Coyotes and did not return for the third period. Ducks coach Bruce Boudreau said at the time that it was precautionary. Anaheim won, 5-3.

Getzlaf is having a Hart Trophy-like season and is the NHL's fourth-leading scorer with 23 goals and 30 assists in 44 games. He was selected to play for Canada at the 2014 Sochi Olympics.

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Posted On Saturday, 01.11.2014 / 4:19 PM

By Curtis Zupke - Correspondent / - 2013-2014 At the Rink Blog

Kings' Richards looking to regain scoring touch

EL SEGUNDO, Calif. – His Los Angeles Kings are still in the thick of the Western Conference playoff race but Mike Richards admits he's had better winters.

Richards is on a 20-game goalless streak dating back to his last goal Nov.25 and he has one goal in his past 28 games going into Saturday night against the Detroit Red Wings. Coach Darryl Sutter broke up Richards and Jeff Carter in early December and Richards has played with a host of different wings, including Kyle Clifford, Matt Frattin and Trevor Lewis. Tyler Toffoli has assumed the right wing spot for several games, though.

Goals have been particularly difficult to come by lately as Richards has no shots on goal in his past two games. Something the forward credits to simply not being aggressive.

"It's been frustrating," Richards said. "But I'm not a natural goal scorer as Jeff would be. I have to kind of earn what I get. I have to stop looking for the pass-first mentality that I usually come with and try to get pucks to the net more. I don't use it very often, but I have a decent shot, so I think I have to get back to trying to shoot more instead of trying to pick your targets."

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Posted On Tuesday, 01.07.2014 / 10:04 PM

By Curtis Zupke - Correspondent / - 2013-2014 At the Rink Blog

Bruins' Lucic scratched due to illness

ANAHEIM -- Boston Bruins left wing Milan Lucic was scratched for the game against the Anaheim Ducks on Tuesday night with an illness, the Bruins announced before opening faceoff.

It is the first game that Lucic has missed this season. Boston will have 11 forwards available against the Ducks.

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Posted On Tuesday, 01.07.2014 / 4:16 PM

By Curtis Zupke - Correspondent / - Road to Sochi blog

Canada had tough choices with a few Bruins players

ANAHEIM -- Milan Lucic and Brad Marchand were invited to Canada's Olympic orientation camp in the summer but the Boston Bruins forwards were not among those who made the final cut when the team was announced Tuesday.

Boston general manager Peter Chiarelli helped consult executive director Steve Yzerman, and Bruins coach Claude Julien is an assistant coach on the team and had input on the selections.

Speaking generally, Julien said, "All I can say is that there were some real tough decisions that had to be made. We all know there are some good players that are left off the roster right now. But at the same time we feel pretty confident with the group that we have that we're going to go out there and compete well."

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Posted On Tuesday, 01.07.2014 / 4:08 PM

By Curtis Zupke - Correspondent / - 2013-2014 At the Rink Blog

Coaches see Bruins-Ducks as battle of elite teams

ANAHEIM -- Outside of a few minor lineup changes, the Anaheim Ducks and Boston Bruins are set for a big matchup Tuesday at Honda Center.

"I think it's pretty obvious when you watch them play that they have some guys that they lean on, a lot like we do, but at the same time it's a pretty well-shared mentality when it comes to playing hard together and supporting each other," Boston coach Claude Julien said of Anaheim.

"No doubt that's one of the reasons I think they are [so good] in the West."

Anaheim is coming off a come-from-behind win against the Vancouver Canucks in which it won with 1.3 seconds remaining in overtime.

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Quote of the Day

I don't know how he does it. I don't know how he gets his body parallel with the player and pulls it through his legs like that. I know he's tried it a couple times in practice and it's never worked, so how he does it in a game, it's incredible.

— Capitals defenseman Mike Green on teammate Alex Ovechkin's highlight-reel goal against the Devils on Saturday