The Ducks’ first road trip of the season is a short one and a long one, all at the same time.
Twenty-two players, coach Randy Carlyle and team staff departed Los Angeles on a charter airplane at 9 this morning, bound for Phoenix and tonight’s preseason matchup with the Coyotes at Jobing.com Arena in suburban Glendale.
The itinerary calls for a postgame return flight to Los Angeles, with arrival expected sometime in the vicinity of midnight.
The short trip, thus, equals a long day. A demanding stretch of four preseason games in four nights will conclude with a Saturday night game against the Kings at Staples Center.
Tonight’s lineup against the Coyotes features a projected line of promising young center Maxime Macenauer skating between wingers Bobby Ryan
and Joffrey Lupul. Defensemen Brett Festerling, Steve McCarthy and Jassen Cullimore and forwards Ryan Donally and MacGregor Sharp are all scheduled to see their first action of the exhibition campaign.
With a bit of help from teammate Mike Brown, Ryan made his way through about half of the USA Today crossword puzzle on the flight to Phoenix. Funny thing about young Mr. Ryan, a right-hand shot on the ice. He writes left-handed.
“I do everything else left-handed,” Ryan said.
Turns out, Ryan never played baseball, but if he had, he would have caught and thrown left-handed, he said.
“I never played anything but hockey, ice and roller,” Ryan said.
Former Ducks goaltender Ilya Bryzgalov isn’t scheduled to play for Phoenix tonight, but the affable Bryzgalov had news to report nonetheless.
Sporting a glorified buzz cut, Bryzgalov bragged that the ’do cost $60.
Gee, I just happen to know a place in Orange where he could have accomplished the same thing for $5.25.