Archive for the ‘Anaheim Ducks’ Category

(Debora Robinson, Getty Images)

(Debora Robinson, Getty Images)

The Anaheim Ducks had a remarkable turnaround last season, finishing first in the Pacific Division and second in the Western Conference after finishing 13th in the West in 2011-12. They were nearly unstoppable all season, getting off to a great start that kept going and going until it stretched the meaning of the word “start.”

Everything was clicking for the Ducks: Ryan Getzlaf bounced back after an off season, Francois Beauchemin amassed points to go with his solid defensive play, rookie Viktor Fasth came out of seemingly nowhere and won his first 8 starts, and the Ducks’ powerplay zipped along at 21.5%.

The Ducks may have lost in seven games to the Detroit Red Wings in the first round of the playoffs, but things seemed to be coming together for the Ducks. And yet, the outlook does not actually look that bright for the Ducks heading into next season.

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Jeff Gross/Getty

Jeff Gross/Getty

There was a trade that happened two seasons ago that looks like a sure win for the Toronto Maple Leafs in retrospect. The Leafs, headed towards their sixth consecutive season with no playoffs, traded away François Beauchemin, under contract for one more season, for Jake Gardiner and Joffrey Lupul.

Beauchemin has had an interesting career and despite being one of the steadiest and consistent top four defenders in the National Hockey League. He’s missed just 74 games due to injury over eight full seasons in the league. He’s played over 17 and a half minutes a game at even strength over each of the last four seasons save for last, when he only played 17:29. That was only good for 39th in the NHL, but his other years he’s been in the top 15 in the league in 5-on-5 ice time.

He’s the definition of a late bloomer and teams have been paying higher and higher prices for him throughout his career. Originally a third round pick by Montreal, he was waived by the team in 2004 and claimed by Columbus. Noted crazy person and terrible general manager Doug MacLean traded away the 25-year-old Beauchemin to Anaheim for a 36-year-old Sergei Fedorov.

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In the most double-take inducing story of the day (for me anyway, I missed the news when it happened), we find Bob Murray, GM of the Anaheim Ducks, being sued by Rachel Paris for allegedly hitting her with a chair after a playoff loss in Game 7 against the Detroit Red Wings. The suit was filed in 2010, and jury selection is today.

That was a lot to take in, let’s slow down for a second. …And exhaaaaaalllllllleee.

Okay….I’ve regrouped.

Here’s what the article written in the Detroit Free Press explains it: Read the rest of this entry »