By Kyle Shohara
Pictures from Practice
The big news coming out of practice this afternoon was that the Ducks have once again placed left wing Dany Heatley on injured reserve. It hasn’t been the start that the 33-year-old had hoped for. Heatley was pointless in the four games he played this season before going on IR, and says he was feeling discomfort during those games.
“It’s been a tough start, but it’s early,” said Heatley. “There is still lots of time left. When I come back, I’d like to be back at 100 percent. It’s still early in the season, so hopefully we can get this fixed.”
Adds head coach Bruce Boudreau, “After a while, it just wasn’t getting any better. He’s been very valiant in trying to do what he wants to do, but he also wants to play the way he feels he can play.”
Absent on the ice was Devante Smith-Pelly, who Boudreau says had a “maintenance” day. “He’s a little sore, but that’s what happens when you play a lot of games against physical teams.”
In his place on the top line with Ryan Getzlaf and Emerson Etem was Patrick Maroon.
UPDATES ON PERRY, BEAUCHEMIN
Corey Perry skated on his own for the second consecutive day, but Boudreau says there still isn’t a concrete date for his return. Perry spent three days and two nights in the hospital recovering from the mumps. “He was a little better today,” said Boudreau. “I’m sure that if he continues at the pace he’s going, [his return] is going to be within the week.”
There were no updates on Francois Beauchemin, who is also recovering from the mumps. “It’d be surprising if he made the trip up north,” said Boudreau.
FACING THE KINGS (AGAIN)
The home-and-home series concludes tomorrow afternoon at Staples Center in a rare one o’clock game for the Ducks. After a barn burner two nights ago in front of a packed house inside Honda Center, the Ducks are expecting an LA team with a chip on its shoulder after getting blanked 2-0 last night at home vs. Dallas. “They’re always a really good team at home,” said defenseman Cam Fowler. “Guys in here have experience playing there, and the playoffs have helped with that. They’re going to be ready. They’ve had a couple of losses in a row, so we need to match their intensity.”
Adds Getzlaf, “We’re going to play a little bit of a different team up there, I’m sure. We have to go in there with the same mentality that we had in here. We’re expecting a big push at the start. It’s going to be a good hockey game.”
Usually coy about revealing the next game’s starting goaltender, Boudreau made no secrets yesterday when he told reporters that Frederik Andersen was getting the nod in LA. Andersen wasn't at his best in Anaheim’s 6-5 shootout win on Wednesday, and was pulled after giving up three goals on 10 shots in 29 minutes and 20 seconds of work.
Andersen says he won’t mind if the Ducks put up 50 shots again. “That would be great,” he said. “We’ll probably have a good game if we do that, but we need to be sharp for the entire 60 minutes. If we can put as much pressure on them as we did [Wednesday], we can take two big points again.”
Andersen says that even though the club’s success at Staples Center during the 2013-14 season certainly helps from a confidence standpoint, it ultimately comes down to the players executing the game plan. “It’s what we do,” he said. “It’s not about the building and their team. It’s about what we can do with this group.”