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At the Rink blog

Robidas to make Ducks debut vs. Capitals

Tuesday, 03.18.2014 / 3:54 PM

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

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2013-2014 At the Rink Blog
Robidas to make Ducks debut vs. Capitals

ANAHEIM -- Stephane Robidas has played 871 regular-season games in the NHL, but he'll have some butterflies for No. 872.

The defenseman is expected to make his Anaheim Ducks debut Tuesday against the Washington Capitals at Honda Center. Robidas was partnered with Bryan Allen in the morning skate.

"I think the main thing is [that] I've got to keep everything really simple," Robidas said. "It's a new team for me. It's the first time in a while, so there's a lot of things going on for me [Tuesday]. But I'm very excited. I've been waiting for that moment for a long time. I'm a little nervous, but at the same time I'm excited, so it's good."

Robidas' debut comes as the Ducks await the results of an MRI exam on defenseman Cam Fowler, who is day-to-day with a lower-body injury. Robidas was acquired from the Dallas Stars before the NHL Trade Deadline to give Anaheim veteran grit after years of being the Ducks' nemesis.

Robidas has not played since Nov. 29 because of a broken leg. He said he has skated for a week without pain. Anaheim coach Bruce Boudreau said he will manage Robidas' minutes to a degree.

"We'll see how he goes," Boudreau said. "His play is going to indicate how much he plays the first game. We don't want to kill him, but at the same time he seems in pretty good shape. If he's ready to play we'd like him to be a regular."

Washington will insert defenseman Patrick Wey, 22, who will play his fourth NHL game. Wey previously played against the Winnipeg Jets, New Jersey Devils and Nashville Predators, but Anaheim would seem to present more of a defensive challenge.

"He skates really well so I think he'll be OK," Washington coach Adam Oates said. "He's well-coached down below [the American Hockey League]. We're looking for him to match their speed … I think he'll be fine."

Capitals right wing Dustin Penner will make his first appearance in Anaheim since he was traded to Washington for a fourth-round pick in the 2013 NHL Draft; the Ducks sent that pick to Dallas for Robidas.

Here are the expected lineups for the Capitals and Ducks:

CAPITALS

Marcus Johansson - Jay Beagle - Alex Ovechkin

Evgeny Kuznetsov - Nicklas Backstrom - Troy Brouwer

Jason Chimera - Eric Fehr - Joel Ward

Dustin Penner - Casey Wellman - Tom Wilson

Karl Alzner - John Carlson

Jack Hillen - Mike Green

Dmitry Orlov - Patrick Wey

Jaroslav Halak

Braden Holtby

Scratched: Connor Carrick

Injured: Brooks Laich (groin), Mikhail Grabovski (lower body), John Erskine (upper body), Aaron Volpatti (upper body)

Notes: Halak will make his sixth straight start as Oates appears to be leaning heavily on his new goalie. Holtby has not played since March 6.

DUCKS

Teemu Selanne - Ryan Getzlaf - Corey Perry

Daniel Winnik - Saku Koivu - Andrew Cogliano

Patrick Maroon - Nick Bonino - Kyle Palmieri

Matt Beleskey - Mathieu Perreault - Jakob Silfverberg

Luca Sbisa - Francois Beauchemin

Hampus Lindholm - Ben Lovejoy

Bryan Allen - Stephane Robidas

Jonas Hiller

Frederik Andersen

Scratched: Mark Fistric, Tim Jackman

Injured: Cam Fowler (lower body), Sheldon Souray (wrist)

Notes: Selanne returns to the lineup after sitting out Saturday, the second of back-to-back games. Hiller was first off the ice. Getzlaf and Perry did not take part in the morning skate but are expected to play.

Quote of the Day

It's really exciting. I'm pretty sure that when I play my first game I'm going to be emotional. To be back on the ice playing a game, being in game situations, with all the routines and rituals I do before games and during the game, I feel like I'm going to be emotional. I'm going to be really happy.

— Montreal Canadiens forward Tim Bozon on playing for the first time since his life-threaning illness