Anaheim’s afternoon flight to Colorado today was a little more full than usual, as the players brought along their fathers for the quick trip to the Mile High City.
|“It gives them a little more appreciation for what we do every day," Lupul said. "They are always watching on TV, but to have them all together in the seats on Saturday will be pretty cool.” |
Getting the two generations together is a nice event the Ducks have held several times in the past, and the players enjoy getting the chance to show their dads the inner-workings of what they do on a daily basis.
“For them to come see practice, see us in the gym, having meetings and going on the flight, it’s pretty interesting for them,” said Joffrey Lupul, whose father Craig is on the trip. “It gives them a little more appreciation for what we do every day. They are always watching on TV, but to have them all together in the seats on Saturday will be pretty cool.”Ducks dads and sons talk about the upcoming trip
In their sons’ road to the NHL, many of these fathers made sacrifices and spent hours helping them achieve their dreams of playing hockey at the highest level. Getting the chance to have this fathers trip is just one small way of re-paying them for their tireless efforts.
“He meant the world,” said Cam Fowler
of his father, Perry. “ I can probably count on one hand the amount of games he missed when I was growing up. He was always there for me. He could be my biggest critic, but he could be my biggest supporter. Whatever I needed, he was there. He has been really been instrumental in my success here.”
The fathers were in attendance last night when the Ducks came out the All-Star break a bit flat. The team surrendered three goals to the rival Sharks in the first 11:15 of regulation. While the Ducks would make things interesting late by cutting that lead down to one in the third period, they ultimately could not overcome the deficit and were defeated, 4-3.
Having won 10 of 13 games prior to the break, the Ducks were hoping to pick up right where they left off. Surely disappointed they had not, the club is hoping to quickly put that game in the past and put forth a better effort against the Avalanche on Saturday afternoon.
|“He meant the world,” said Fowler of his father, Perry. “ I can probably count on one hand the amount of games he missed when I was growing up. He was always there for me." |
That fact was evident on the team’s locker room whiteboard, which read “Did you see it this morning? Start of a new day!! Let’s get back to work!!”
“Our focus is Colorado, to improve on our play from last night and shore up some of the areas in which we were lackadaisical,” Ducks head coach Randy Carlyle said. “I look at it and say we were a little rusty.
Despite it being the beginning of February, in a scheduling quirk this will be the first of four meetings this season between the Ducks and Avalanche. Anaheim has fared well in the season series over the past three years, going 10-2-0 and 5-1-0 at Pepsi Center in Denver. With their fathers in tow, they will look to boost those numbers beginning at noon on Saturday.
“They are a good, young team,” Fowler said. “Going into the Mile High City is going to be a challenge for us. It’s a Western Conference game and we haven’t faced them this year, so we have to make sure we’re ready to go.”
Said Carlyle, “They would like to perform well in front of their fathers. I’d rather have them with us than not with us in these situations in a one-game scenario. Hopefully it’s an enjoyable trip and we can top it off with a great performance in Colorado.”