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Round 3
Stanley Cup Final
Posted On Wednesday, 05.14.2014 / 3:39 PM

By Curtis Zupke -  NHL.com Correspondent /NHL.com - Ducks-Kings series blog

Vatanen providing Ducks with spark from blue line

LOS ANGELES -- Anaheim Ducks defenseman Sami Vatanen saw his hockey cards come to life when he arrived in Anaheim. There across the dressing room were his Finnish idols, right wing Teemu Selanne and center Saku Koivu. Vatanen collected Selanne's card growing up in Finland.

"Of course it was a special moment for me," Vatanen said. "I saw those guys, who I've been watching all my young life, and try to learn from them. It was fun. They're good guys and I like to hang out with them. It's pretty special."

Selanne, an avid car collector, gave Vatanen a Mercedes-Benz to drive around town. On the ice, he and Koivu helped Vatanen assimilate to the Ducks.

"Every day when I got here, I didn't understand what the coaches were saying," Vatanen said. "I got to ask them and speak my own language."

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Posted On Tuesday, 05.13.2014 / 7:35 PM

By Curtis Zupke -  NHL.com Correspondent /NHL.com - Ducks-Kings series blog

Ducks aim to extend season for Koivu, Selanne

ANAHEIM -- There's no denying the excitement that the young core of the Anaheim Ducks has generated the past few days. Between rookie goalie John Gibson, left wing Devante Smith-Pelly and defenseman Sami Vatanen, the future looks very bright.

But the time is now for veteran forwards Teemu Selanne and Saku Koivu, who acknowledged Tuesday what it would mean to eliminate the Los Angeles Kings in the Western Conference Second Round. Anaheim leads the best-of-7 series 3-2 and can close it out in Game 6 on Wednesday at Staples Center (9:30 p.m. ET; NBCSN, TSN, RDS).


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Posted On Monday, 05.12.2014 / 9:57 PM

By Curtis Zupke -  NHL.com Correspondent /NHL.com - Ducks-Kings series blog

Nolan in, Clifford out for Kings in Game 5

ANAHEIM -- Los Angeles Kings coach Darryl Sutter didn't hint at any line adjustments Monday morning, but it appears he will change them up against the Anaheim Ducks for Game 5 of the Western Conference Second Round series at Honda Center (10 p.m. ET; NBCSN, TSN, RDS).

Kings captain Dustin Brown skated with center Anze Kopitar and forward Marian Gaborik in warm-ups. It also appears that forward Jordan Nolan will be in the Los Angeles lineup in favor of Kyle Clifford and play on the fourth line with center Mike Richards and forward Dwight King.


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Posted On Monday, 05.12.2014 / 4:23 PM

By Curtis Zupke -  NHL.com Correspondent /NHL.com - Ducks-Kings series blog

Ducks' Perreault relieved to get back in lineup

ANAHEIM -- Anaheim Ducks center Mathieu Perreault is expected to return to the lineup for Game 5 of the Western Conference Second Round series against the Los Angeles Kings on Monday night at Honda Center (10 p.m. ET; NBCSN, TSN, RDS). The best-of-7 series is tied 2-2.

Perreault missed Game 4 with a lower-body injury, but he said it pained him more to have to watch the game.

"It is so hard," Perreault said. "It gets me so nervous. When you play, it's not quite like that, but when you're watching, I can't sit down. I start walking around because I get so nervous. I'd rather be out there playing than watching, that's for sure."

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Posted On Sunday, 05.11.2014 / 5:41 PM

By Curtis Zupke -  NHL.com Correspondent /NHL.com - Ducks-Kings series blog

Kings shrug off Game 4 loss to Ducks, Gibson

EL SEGUNDO, Calif. -- The Los Angeles Kings met earlier than usual for an off day Sunday morning, but it was not a back-to-the-drawing-board session. The Kings were the better team for most of a 2-0 loss to the Anaheim Ducks in Game 4 of the Western Conference Second Round.

That's probably why coach Darryl Sutter was at his sarcastic best in making a reference to the television show "M*A*S*H" when asked if the Kings are rattled by playing well and losing.

"Yeah, I'm not rattled," Sutter said. "I'm just thankful I'm alive. I'm fortunate to pull through after a devastating loss last night. Radar and Hawkeye had to get me up to come here today."

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Posted On Saturday, 05.10.2014 / 9:30 PM

By Curtis Zupke -  NHL.com Correspondent /NHL.com - Ducks-Kings series blog

Ducks juggle line combinations for Game 4

LOS ANGELES -- Devante Smith-Pelly will take another turn at top-line left wing for the Anaheim Ducks to start Game 4 of the Western Conference Second Round series against the Los Angeles Kings on Saturday.

Smith-Pelly took line rushes with center Ryan Getzlaf and right wing Corey Perry in pre-game warm-ups at Staples Center. Smith-Pelly played with Getzlaf, a Hart Trophy finalist, and 2011 Hart winner Perry briefly earlier this season and had chemistry with the two. He has two goals with a plus-1 rating in eight Stanley Cup Playoff games.


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Posted On Saturday, 05.10.2014 / 4:05 PM

By Curtis Zupke -  NHL.com Correspondent /NHL.com - Ducks-Kings series blog

Ducks don't name Game 4 goalie

LOS ANGELES -- It remained unclear who would start in goal for the Anaheim Ducks on Saturday in Game 4 of the Western Conference Second Round series against the Los Angeles Kings at Staples Center (9:30 p.m. ET; NBCSN, TSN, RDS).

The Kings lead the best-of-7 series 2-1.

Ducks coach Bruce Boudreau sounded like he would use Jonas Hiller, who left the ice first at the morning skate, although rookie goalie John Gibson stepped off about two minutes after Hiller. Gibson, 20, would be a bold choice; he's played three NHL games and none in the Stanley Cup Playoffs.

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Posted On Thursday, 05.08.2014 / 9:59 PM

By Curtis Zupke -  NHL.com Correspondent /NHL.com - Ducks-Kings series blog

Ducks turn to Andersen in Game 3

LOS ANGELES -- Frederik Andersen will start in goal for the Anaheim Ducks for Game 3 of the Western Conference Second Round series against the Los Angeles Kings on Thursday night at Staples Center.

Andersen led the Ducks onto the ice for warm-ups.


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Posted On Wednesday, 05.07.2014 / 5:03 PM

By Curtis Zupke -  NHL.com Correspondent /NHL.com - Ducks-Kings series blog

Palmieri could be back in Ducks lineup for Game 3

ANAHEIM -- Anaheim Ducks coach Bruce Boudreau contemplated a lineup tweak during two days off and it appears wing Kyle Palmieri could return to the Stanley Cup Playoffs.

Palmieri skated with center Nick Bonino and wing Devante Smith-Pelly in practice Wednesday. Palmieri seems a logical choice for Anaheim, which has scored three goals in losing the first two games of the best-of-7 Western Conference Second Round series against the Los Angeles Kings.

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Posted On Monday, 05.05.2014 / 3:26 PM

By Curtis Zupke -  NHL.com Correspondent /NHL.com - Ducks-Kings series blog

Etem, Smith-Pelly raising play, giving Ducks options

ANAHEIM -- Not many teams in the NHL can scratch the likes of Daniel Winnik and Kyle Palmieri. Winnik is one of the better penalty killers around, and Palmieri is a potential 20-goal scorer.

The Anaheim Ducks have done so twice in the Stanley Cup Playoffs because of the play of young wings Devante Smith-Pelly and Emerson Etem. The two were on the fourth line with center Nick Bonino in Game 1 of the Western Conference Second Round series against the Los Angeles Kings, and coach Bruce Boudreau had them together the morning of Game 2 on Monday night at Honda Center (10 p.m. ET; NBCSN, TSN, RDS).

"I thought they played real good [in Game 1]," Boudreau said. "I thought it was Emerson's best game of the three that he's played. [Smith-Pelly's] played well since he got here, both physically and offensively, and now killing penalties. I think he's engaged with the team, and he's playing like he was when he was an 18-year-old and made the team."

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Quote of the Day

I don’t know if it was more relief for me that [Stamkos] scored or the power play scored. It was a whole compilation of Alka Seltzer.

— Lightning coach Jon Cooper after Steven Stamkos broke a long scoring drought and Tampa Bay's struggling power play scored four times in Game 2 at Montreal