The Ducks announced today that they have signed center Ryan Carter to a three-year contract. Per club policy, financial terms were not disclosed.
Carter, 24 (8/3/83), appeared in his first NHL season with the Ducks in 2007-08, scoring 4-4=8 points with 36 penalty minutes (PIM) in 34 games. On Feb. 8 at New Jersey, he scored his first two career NHL goals against Martin Brodeur less than eight minutes apart to lead Anaheim to a 2-1 win. In addition, he played in six Stanley Cup Playoff games for the Ducks, going scoreless with six PIM in the 2008 Western Conference Quarterfinal Series against Dallas.
Carter also played in 13 games for Portland, Anaheim’s primary development affiliate in the American Hockey League (AHL). In his 13 AHL appearances, he scored 3-2=5 points with a +3 rating and 38 PIM. Carter collected 2-2=4 points in his last seven games with the Pirates, including the lone goal in a 1-0 victory over Springfield in his final AHL game on Dec. 16 in Portland.
A native of White Bear Lake, MN, Carter was originally signed by the Ducks as a free agent from Minnesota State University on July 12, 2006. He made his professional debut with Portland during the 2006-07 regular season, recording 16-20=36 points with 85 PIM in 76 games. Carter also appeared in four games with the Ducks during the 2007 Stanley Cup Playoffs, including Game 4 of the Stanley Cup Final on June 4, 2007 at Ottawa.
Carter spoke with reporters late Tuesday afternoon via conference call. Following is a transcript:
On expecting a contract:
No, I wasn’t expecting it. The thing is I wasn’t really playing for a three-year contract or anything like that. I was just trying to make a footprint and hopefully with that footprint would come a contract. In then end, I guess the answer to that question is no, I definitely wasn’t expecting it.
On the contract process:
There’s a business aspect to the game and the deal did come together fairly quickly. That’s the job of my agent to handle that and advise me, as far as what’s a good deal and should I take it. We went back and forth a couple of times, but all in all, I think they were fair and we were fair on our end. It came together fairly quick.
On if the contract changes his mindset:
I think it changes the mindset a little bit. There’s some security there. You can kind of relax, figure out your game and work that way. Other than that, I don’t think it changes the way you play, the way you prepare or anything like that.On what he thinks he needs to work on in the offseason:
There’s a number of things to work on in the offseason. I think the no. 1 thing for me to work on coming off a rookie season is probably consistency. I played a few games and played different roles. Now I’m maybe settling into a role, trying to be consistent night in and night out and be somebody that the coaching staff can rely on. It’s something that I’m really going to work on this offseason. It’s a two-way street. It’s mentally and physically. Going to the gym, working out and making sure you can depend on your body throughout the season and also recharging the battery and coming back mentally fresh.On the difference in his role between the ’07 and ’08 playoffs:
It was definitely an adjustment taking on a bigger role. It’s always more difficult. I think more so than the role adjustment from last year to this year was the transition of coming back from my injury and jumping into the playoffs. The regular season into the playoffs is quite a jump in competitiveness and the level of play. That was probably the largest adjustment in this year’s playoffs.On his offensive capabilities displayed prior to being injured:
Growing up and my career path has been defensive, but at the same time I’ve been relied on offensively. I have that in my game. I like to score. I like shoot. Who doesn’t, I guess? That’s more the way I like to play. Start off on defense and work my way out. Definitely, you play the game to play on the offensive end.
On if he will come to training camp looking to compete at the no.2 center spot:
I haven’t talked with anybody as far as what the plans are, but there are spots open in the lineup and with the lack of success maybe there will be changes made. Who knows, different personnel may come and may go out? Like I said, I embrace any opportunity. I’m looking forward to coming back in camp and if there is a spot, I’d like to compete for it.