Brad Winchester has accrued 86 penalty minutes in 57 games played this season. More than a quarter of that time in the box came in two games against the Ducks, his new team who acquired him from St. Louis yesterday at the trade deadline.
|“Being with the Blues, we’ve had some really good games with Anaheim and hard-fought battles,” Winchester said. “I certainly know how this team plays, with a lot of skill and toughness. I’m excited to be here.” |
The Ducks and Blues have been involved in three physical and chippy games against each other, exchanging 71 penalties spanning 279 minutes. Winchester accounted for 26 of those minutes (during games on Oct. 11 and Jan. 12) as an opponent against Anaheim. He got his first taste of being on the other side on Tuesday when he skated with Ducks for the first time at Honda Center.
“Being with the Blues, we’ve had some really good games with Anaheim and hard-fought battles,” said Winchester, who will wear No. 19 as a Duck. “I certainly know how this team plays, with a lot of skill and toughness. I’m excited to be here.”
Watch video of Winchester and Jonas Hiller
Having pulled the trigger on several deals prior to deadline day, Anaheim made just two moves yesterday in hopes of strengthening their bottom six forwards. They acquired Winchester for a 2012 third-round draft pick and they shipped Maxim Lapierre (along with MacGregor Sharp) to Vancouver for Joel Perrault and a 2012 third-round draft pick.
“He’s been able to provide a level of offense,” said Ducks head coach Randy Carlyle of Winchester, who has nine goals and 14 points on the year. “He’s been flexible and can play the third and fourth lines. He can move up on your power play. That is really more or less the versatility of the guy. When you get players that can score 10-plus goals in that position, you like to utilize that.”
Ducks Executive Vice President/General Manager Bob Murray noted his desire to add size to the Ducks before yesterday’s Noon (PST) deadline hit and he certainly did so with Winchester, a 6-5, 230-pound left winger. During his first practice, he was paired with George Parros
(the only other forward at least 6-5) and Kyle Chipchura for what would be a rugged fourth forward line. That trio has combined for 37 fights in 2010-11.
“He’s a big-bodied guy who we feel can come in and use his physical stature and style of play and get involved,” Carlyle said. “We think he can move up and down on our left side. We think there is a fit for him in our style of play. We think he can help us and make a positive contribution by just being himself.”
When the trade was announced, Winchester was actually on a plane with the rest of the Blues en route to St. Louis from Calgary. Once they landed, he was informed he was moving on to Anaheim, his fourth NHL stop in a career that began in 2005-06 with Edmonton. He also played one season with Dallas in 2007-08 before going to St. Louis.
It’s always a surprise to anybody who gets traded. I’m excited to start this new chapter. I flew in this morning, so didn’t get a whole lot of chat time before practice. I just got the gear situated and got on the ice. There will be lots of time to catch up. We’ll hopefully develop that chemistry pretty quickly. - Brad Winchester
His first game will most likely come Wednesday, when the Ducks play host to the rival Red Wings. Winchester is quite familiar with Detroit, having been in the Central Division along with them each of the past two seasons. “They are a top-tier team in the league,” he said. “They have dangerous guys you have to keep an eye on. They are a good test.”
Anaheim (33-25-5, 71 points) has been unable to figure out the Red Wings up to this point. They have gone 0-3-0 in the three previous contests in this season’s series, including two 4-0 shutout losses. But the last game between the clubs was all the way back on December 3 in Orange County. Carlyle said he feels some things have changed in that timeframe.
“From our standpoint, we’re much more capable of playing a strong game against teams like Detroit than we were 2-3 months ago,” the head coach said. “We know the type of game Detroit plays. Hopefully, we’re a hockey club that is taking a step forward versus a step backward. Tomorrow night will be a big test for our team.”NotesJonas Hiller
(light-headedness) took to the ice for 45 minutes at Honda Center, but did not report much progress in his condition afterward. “I still have symptoms and don’t feel right. It still feels like something is slowing me down and I’m always behind the play. It doesn’t hurt or anything, but it’s not a nice feeling. I don’t think it’s a setback. It just takes longer than I thought and wanted.”Saku Koivu
(groin) skated for more than 30 minutes before practice and will be monitored during tomorrow’s morning skate. “He is getting a treatment now at a specialist,” Carlyle said. “Hopefully, the target for him will be moved up and we’ll have an opportunity to look at him possible playing here in the near future.”
Ducks leading scorer Corey Perry
left practice with what Carlyle would only say is a lower-body ailment. “It’s too early to even talk about Corey,” he said. “He just left the ice after the start of practice. I wasn’t given any update. I didn’t see anything, see him hit anybody or see him fall down.”