Thursday, December 24, 2009

Happy Christmas!!!

I know it's been ages since I've posted anything. Shame on me.

But don't worry! I will post something very soon. Just with the whole Holiday bit and with work, I have been rather busy. But fear not, I have been watching the games and have been please (except with loses to the Sharks and from last nights match with the Coyotes) with the results thus far.

For now, I wish all my fellow Duck fans a Happy Christmas! And to all my close friends and family back home in SoCal: I dearly miss you all.

Go Ducks!

Wednesday, December 9, 2009

The comeback.

0 - 6?

It looked like the hole would get deeper. It looked like it was going to be a 6-game losing streak even when Lupul got the late goal in the 2nd period. However, that was the beginning of those who support the team. We started to wake from our sleep.

Last night, it appeared as if the Ducks would be going 0 - 3 in their 6-game season series with the Dallas Stars, the team that I really hate but, you all know that. It would be the Stars who, through the 1st and late in the 2nd, would be ahead by 3 goals to nil. It looked as if Turco would be getting a shutout. Not until late that 2nd period did Anaheim finally put one up on the board when Lupul, who had just served a minor penalty, came out of the box and got a breakaway from a beautiful pass by Ryan Getzlaf. He was all alone to face Turkey. I thought he Stars netminder got the better of the shot to save it but, his momentum moving back, and the fact that Loops tried in desperation to stuff the puck, Turkey ended up sliding behind the goal line taking the puck with him giving Loops the goal.

To be honest, it was nice but I thought that the Ducks would still end up losing the game. That's how it has been for the past few games. Expectations were still low but, I agreed when Ducks Radio Colour Analyst, Dan Wood, stated that if the Ducks can get a 2nd goal within the first 5 mins of the 3rd, we would have ourselves a hockey game...

It took just 6 mins.

Rookie Dan Sexton, who was called up after Selanne went on IR for 4 - 6 weeks with a fractured bone in his knuckle, would get the Ducks within one goal after scoring his 1st NHL goal. I knew that it was only a matter of time because in last nights game, he showed heart and fought to get anything going. He had many chances and it finally paid off. The Pond, although it was somewhat empty, were back in it as well. Anaheim started to claw back with a lot of offensive pressure by throwing many pucks at the net. Though, they were still down by one goal. As the minutes got closer to a full 60, I started to wonder when Jiggy, who was in net despise losing the shootout on Sunday night against Ottawa, would be headed to the bench for the extra attacker. I was also hoping that RC wouldn't be pulling him too soon. Right after Jiggy headed to the bench and at 18:58, Dan Sexton tied the game up on a wicked sharp angle wrist-shot going through Turkey's 5-hole and into the back of the net. We definitely were back in it.

Anaheim had forced the OT. And they were in control even though Dallas had some good chances, Jiggy would stand tall. It seemed as though the game would be headed for a shootout but, with 46.5 secs left of the overtime, Koivu would win the game after leading a 3 on 1 rush when Dallas were caught in the trap. Koivu, who was charging along with Whitney and Scotty, took one shot that Turkey saved but also giving up a juicy rebound, and it was that 2nd shot from Saku that would find the back of the net.

It was the biggest deficit comeback in a long time for the Ducks, since February 17, 2007. It felt good then, and it continues to feel good now.

The Ducks will take their momentum to Detroit when they face the Red Wings on Friday night at the Joe. Let's hope they can do it again because they need to make up a lot of ground when it comes to the WC standings. Currently they are 7 pts within the 8th spot and playoff contention.

So I'll ask again, "Is this the turning point?" Dear God, I hope so.

Go Ducks!

PS. Well done, Sexy and congratulations!

Sunday, December 6, 2009

My letter to my club.

Dear Ducks Organization,

I don't know what to say. I guess the words that I can use that come to mind would be:

"Frustration" "Speechless" "Upsetting" "Disconcerting"


Before the beginning of the season, I was excited along with many of my fellow supporters for what was in store in the upcoming NHL year. Sure, trading Prongs and Beauch was a tragedy to the blueline but I had faith and understood why it was done. On paper, it looked to be a season of epic proportions, and I had a feeling as I thought to myself "This is the year." And now looking back, I feel that I've totally been fooled because as of tonight, I can't help but think:

"5-game losing streak"

Two back to back games lost in the S/O. What is the matter here? Why is this happening? The Anaheim Ducks are a better team then this and yet they're playing as if they're a team with one good player. Please, I am not the only one who seeks answers. I am not the only fan asking "Why?" I'm starting to feel let down as well as having no expectations for a win as of late. I also feel cheated because there have been times where instead of doing things with friends and/or with my girlfriend and her family, I stay home to watch the games. I mean hell, I pay $20 a month for NHL Game Center Live to watch my team, The Ducks, play because I can no longer see these games in person. For the past 6 months, I've been living in Olympia, WA., and for the past 6 months, the biggest thing that I've missed and am sad about is the fact that I left my team behind. Thoughts of moving back to be next to my team have gone through my head and now when I think that, I immediately think "Why? The team are 15th in the Western Conference and 28th in the entire NHL. Whats the use?"

The fact that nothing's been done to answer for what is happening is a shame. And this goes out to the owners, Henry and Susan, why haven't you stepped in? Are you happy with the way things are going? Are you happy with the many empty seats inside the Pond? Are you pleased with the coaching decisions done by Carlyle? Better yet, are you happy that GM Bob Murray will not do what needs to be done? Let me throw some numbers out there for you.

Let's start with the S/O:
Perry 0 - 7 and Getzy 1 - 6. Why RC keeps on putting these two in the S/O? I have no idea.
10-13-6 with 26 pts so far this season. W% of 0.448

Do you know how horrible it is to feel that even with a two-goal lead, you know that the team will end up losing the game? This has got to end because even though I am in no way an SSH, I stand by my fellow fans who are when they vent their frustrations for having season tickets in a season that is quickly becoming a joke. I mean did we do anything? Have we been unfaithful as fans? Was it me personally? Did you somehow find out that I moved from Anaheim to Olympia and are punishing me? All these questions that we have for you and no answers. I will leave you with one more:

"Is this a test for all of the Ducks faithful?"

No matter how I feel, no matter how frustrated, speechless, upset, disconcerted... disappointed.
No matter which one falls in place, I will continue to support the team. I will continue to follow through thick and thin. Through good and bad. I hope you know that many of us will. So until then, I along with those who are faithful await to see what changes you will be making because I think you know what you need to do. Now is the time to do it.

Always and forever, a Duck supporter:


"I'm a Duck until I die.
I'm a Duck until I die.
I know I am, I'm sure I am...
I'm a Duck until I die."

P.S. If you trade Selanne or Neidermayer, I will throw my show at you. That's not a threat, that's a prediction.

Wednesday, December 2, 2009

Ch-Ch-Ch-Ch-Changes + other tidbits.

Surprised to see the news when I woke up this morning:

After last nights disappointing loss to the Kings, Bob Murray has made a few changes and the "big-one", if you want to call it that, came in two parts:

1. New York Rangers have claimed Ducks Center, Erik Christensen, off of waivers.

2. Ducks have penned Montreal Habs Center, Kyle Chipchura, and give them their 2011 4th Round Draft Pick. Please don't mistake his name with that yummy Mexican delicacy where you deep-fry a burrito and/or the infamous yet mythical goat blood sucker.

Chipchura is known to play a very grinding type of game. He is a two-way player. Something that is needed. I'm sure BM is crossing his fingers whilst quietly mumbling to himself "Please-Please-Please-Please work!"

Along with moving EC and adding KC, ha, the Ducks have sent Brendan Mikkelson down to the AHL and have called up Defenseman, Brett Festerling, from the Toronto Marlies of the same league.

The vet players had the day off today from practice at Anaheim Ice but during that same practice, Winger, Joffrey Lupul participated in his first full-on hard skating practice since playing on Nov 19th and had to be scratched due to them pesky back spasms.

“It was nice to be back out there with the guys,” Lupul said. “A week ago, there was no chance I could be out on the ice. A lot of will depend on how I feel tomorrow. I have to see how my body reacts. I have my fingers crossed. I really want to be back as soon as possible. This is a critical time of the year for us.”

Speedy recovery, Loopes

As far as what I think about these "changes"? I don't know. I personally believe that we need something completely new, something big, not just shift around players who haven't done much for the team. This is not what I call "rattling the cages".

The Ducks left today for Dallas. They take on the Stars tomorrow night. Puck drops @17:30 and can been watched on the NHL Network!

In other news from around the league:

Yesterday it was announced that Washington Capitals Forward/Superstar/NHL Golden Child, Alexander Ovechkin, was suspended for 2 games after going knee-to-knee with a Carolina Hurricanes player on Monday night. Now a lot of us know how dangerous of a player Ovie can be. He's not shy to leave his feet from the ice when hitting or going knee-to-knee and frankly, the suspension is about time. Too long have the NHL averted their eyes whenever he made dangerous/questionable hits such as this. The league are ones to be very inconsistent suspending other players for hits less than his and letting Ovie off with a slap on the wrist. He ended up hurting himself on that dirty hit and is now DTD. Some think that 2 days was too harsh, I think it's right. I would like to see it at 3 days but being that he's out hurt because of it, I get where the league are going with it in this situation. You also have some people saying that he didn't lead with his right leg. This shows that he totally did:

Now everyone has already heard and/or witnessed what went down the other night in Atlanta when the Florida Panthers were in town to take on the Thrashers. Everyone knows that Panther D-man, Keith Ballard took his frustration out but had bad aim and whacked Panther goalie, Tomas Vokoun, right in the melon instead of the iron in attempt to do what many of us have witnessed frustrated players to do after getting scored on, breaking sticks on the posts. Now I've heard discussion on whether or not the NHL should've suspended Ballard. Ok, I think if the NHL had done such action, it would be the dumbest thing to do although it was pretty dumb, not to have a go in breaking his stick, but to blindly turn whilst swinging the stick in a baseball like fashion. Another dumb thing after whacking the goalie and cutting his ear was the fact that Ballard probably thought:

"Hmmmm, I just totally hit my team mate... ummmm... ummmmm... I'm gonna try again, get my aim right, break my stick, and ummmm.. skate off the ice! Ok!! Here goes!!! Stick broken... RUNAWAY!!"

His goalie was down in the crease when he had the second try! I mean c'mon! How did he NOT know that he missed the post completely? Oh well, Vokoun is alright with just the cut. Expect many a fruit basket and flowers delivered to the goal tender with the cards signed by Ballard after writing, "My bad."

One more...

Last night, Toronto Maple Leafs netminder, Jonas "The Monster" Gustavsson was taken to a Montreal hospital last night just after playing the full 1st period and stopping 8 shots. Apparently he told Leafs coach, Ron Wilson, that his heart beat was accelerated. He didn't have to stay over night and returned to Toronto before being looked at by specialists. He has had heart problems and surgery in the past. I think this will affect his trade value...

Go Ducks!

7-Games end on a sour note

I don’t know what to say or what to do anymore. All I know
is what I would like to see happen and all I know is that I’m not the only one who feels this way...

Last night, the Ducks played hosts to their cross-town rivals, the Los Angeles Kings, a game that all on the Ducks side were hoping to win and to beat the surprise team of the season. Although it was the first game of the “Freeway Face-Off Series”, I was hoping that the Ducks would come out on top and set the tone. The rivalry with the Kings is a heated one. A lot of that heat though doesn’t spring from the ice but from the stands as King and Duck supporters are known to just down right hate each other. Although LA fans tend to talk and yapp all they want, we as Duck fans just have one thing to say:

"Stanely Cup"

And though this season, they have been the better team in the NHL, they still don’t have what our team has. I’ve read Kings fans post things like “Winning the Cup was a fluke” which is one of the dumbest things I have ever read because if anyone knows anything, winning the Stanley Cup is probably one of the hardest things to do in all of sports. ‘Nuff said.

The game last night was also the last one in the 7-game homestand and after losing to the Coyotes in OT on Sunday night, it was a must win in regulation game. Coming into that game against PHX, Jiggy, along with the rest of the team was riding a 3-game winning streak, the first one this season. Jiggy was one of the big reasons for that, getting an amazing shut-out against a very, very good Chicago Black Hawks team on Black Friday. He ended up losing the game on Sunday night, but still gained a point. An OT loss tends to be better than regulation loss with the 3-point game we have now. A lot of us expected J.S. to get the start for last night’s game. And we were all surprised that hear that it would be Hiller in net. As much as I love Hiller and think he is the future netminder for the team, his game, like the entire teams this season, hasn’t be doing too well. He’s made some amazing stops and has won some including a shut-out, it just looked like the team was playing beter with Jiggy. Both netminders have been left hanging out to dry by a weak defense and last night, we would see that happen again.

The Kings would answer first and second with two unanswered goals in the 1st period with the second being on the PP when R2 would be sitting in the box on his 2nd penalty in just that beginning period alone. Going down 0 – 2 was unacceptable. Late in that period, hope would come as Perry tipped the puck behind LA goalie, Jonathan Quick at 14:41. After that goal, the Ducks started to put the proper offensive pressure on LA. The 2nd period would start out with the Ducks on the one-man advantage that was carried over seconds before the previous period ended. The Ducks PP would be a shameful one getting nothing out of it. At 6:40 in the 2nd, the Kings, along with their idiotic fans, would be celebrating after Randy Jones would shoot one from just below the point taking advantage of the slight screen by Ducks D-man, Eminger, on Hiller. Most of the 2nd was just a horrible period for the Ducks, with adding to more possession turnover, poor puck handling, and defensive breakdown. It wouldn’t be towards the end of the period where hope would be rekindled.

Ducks had a PP and weren’t able to create anything with it but with .16s left to go on said PP, the one-man advantage would turn into a 5 on 3 for Anaheim. Just after the two-men ended, Ryan Whitney would slap the puck on a one-timer bringing the Ducks back within one. The rest of that period, the Ducks would not see many other chances but hey, they were within one going into the 3rdand that gave me something to cheer and be stressed about. At 5:39 in the 3rd, the Pond would get loud when Marchant would get a crazy bouncing puck after it rebounded off of Quick from a shot taken by Matt Beleskey, and he would put it low in the net.

Ducks had clawed back to tie it up and the intense level for the 3rd was shot up as well. Although it was tied, it seemed like at times that Anaheim was content on sending the game into OT, they stopped moving their feet, R2 would complete the Box-Trip on a 2 min penalty for tripping that was called not by the ref that was standing right next to the play but by the one out on the blueline (see: Ref You Suck!) and was then immediately taken off the 2nd line and replaced by Marchant (looks like the R2 experiment has come to an end). Chances would be made by both teams, Hiller would stand strong but it was poor defense that would help the Kings get their Game-Winning-Goal after the Ducks failed to clear the puck out of the zone, Jack Johnson (Ha! Not the singer, silly!), would shoot a wicked puck up from the top of the RW circle and would luckily tip off the stick of LA Kings player, Brad Richardson, and all of Anaheim would go silent. The only cheers would be from the annoying LA fans. Ducks 3 – 4 Kings.

With the game almost over, it looked like there was a bit of light at the end of the tunnel when J. Johnson would be skating towards the box after getting knicked for cross-checking. The time had come. It would be the Ducks for the rest of the game and they would supply all the offensive pressure and have the Kings with their back to the wall. So many chances would come out from Niedermayer, Kouivu, Selanne, Perry, Ryan, Getzy-pretty much for all who hit the ice for the Ducks. Things were intense but in the end, the reason why the Kings would win would be because of Quick who came out big and made some amazing saves. And that was that. The Ducks would end their 7-games at home on a rather sour note.

All in support of Anaheim are in one word: upset. Actually I would say a few: upset, angry, and frustrated. At least, I am. Although my team came back, it wasn’t a great game. Ducks were out played in almost every aspect. It’s been that way for mostly all season so far. I’m just done with it. Of course I love my team and will have their back no matter what, but I feel that all the time I’ve put to in back them is being done in vain. All the writing, all the Twitter posts being done with nothing much to show for. And it’s even harder being that I am now living thousands of miles from any fan that I can sit down and talk with face to face. The Ducks are in a rare position: dead last in the pacific and 13th in the Western Conference. It’s looking bleak at the moment and what’s sad is that it’s lowering my expectations now for every game here on out. I think RCs decision to put Hiller in net was a bad one. His whole “You win-You Play, You lose-You sit” mantra is completely useless. Along with frustration between the two goalies, it’s cause a bit of a division in the fan base. Jiggy V Hiller. Homers are springing left and right posting silly-stupid threads all over about how Hiller or Jiggy sucks. As fans, we need to stand behind the team as whole and not just behind one member. If you want to just support one player, go jump on the Caps bandwagon or something. But clearly there’s frustration throughout Anaheim’s base.

I know I am pretty upset right now. We need something to change, something to rattle the cages, something to start a fire. It looked pretty optimistic in this recent home-stand, it looked like things were turning around, but last night, it was like the start of this season. This doesn’t feel and/or look good. So the Ducks go on the road for a couple of games. Tomorrow it will be in Dallas against the stupid Stars then the following night, they will be back in Minnesota to take on the Wild. They will be back on Sunday to take on the Sens. I have hope, I have faith but like I said, expectations now are low. Here’s a quick run-down continuing from my last post when the Ducks won against the Tampa Bay Lightning:

[Ducks V Sharks]
Lose by one goal. 2-3
Goals by Wiz, Whitney. Perry with an Assist. Both goals in the 1st period. Thorton with GWG. Strong shutdown by SJ in the 3rd. Hiller in net.

[Ducks V Flames]
Win by one goal. 3-2
Bobby Ryan and Getzy with goals in the 1st. Perry receives an Assist. Flames scored first. Iginla gets the late tying goal in the 3rd sending it to OT and then the S/O. Selanne scores and Jiggy saves to win who started in net.

[Ducks V Hurricanes]
Win by one goal. 3-2
Canes score first in the 1st period. Scott Niedermayer goal in the 2nd and goals from Petteri Nokelainen and Selanne in the 3rd. Late goal by the Canes in the 3rd but Ducks hold on to win.Jiggy in net. Perry Assist

[Ducks V Black Hawks]
Shut out win. 3 - 0
2 goals from Selanne, one in the 1st and 2nd periods. Boynton goal in the 2. Perry with an Assist and Jiggy in net who gets his first shut out of the season.

[Ducks V Coyotes]
Lose in OT by one goal. 2 - 3
Getzy goal in the 2nd period. Yotes back to back goals in the 3rd to tie and take the lead. Bobby Ryan goal late in the 3rd to tie it back up. Perry gets an Assist. Yotes win it in OT. Jiggy in net. NOT TELEVISED WHATSOEVER! BOOOOOO!

One quick note, a good one, Perry’s streak lives on and is the longest in the NHL at 19-games since Sid the Kid, two years ago! Go Perry!

As always: Go Ducks, even when I’m upset with you.

Sunday, November 29, 2009

It's been a while...

I haven't updated the ol' blog in a while mainly because I'm waiting for this 7-game Homestand to end. All I will say is that so far Anaheim are 4-1-1. Tonight, they played against the Coyotes and went down in OT, ending a 3-game winning streak but have no fear, Perry has reached his point streak to 18-games and still counting!

I hope to have a full post update after the Ducks take on the Queens in their last home game which will be on Tuesday. Hope the boys come out on top.

Til then and always,

Go Ducks!

Friday, November 20, 2009

O! Captain, my Captain!

Dear Scotty:

What can I say about your amazing GWGs?? I miss seeing them in person...

Last night it was the Ducks V The Bolts. Tampa Bay have been riding well on the wave of amazing offensive players such a St. Louis, Stamkos, Tanguay, Lecavalier, and it was the same Tampa Bay team who entered the Pond. Anaheim were in need of a disparate win to give all of us in the Ducks nation hope that things can turn around. And it looked great for the 1st and half of the 2nd period where Ducks were in a 3 - 0 lead with goals from Selanne and Getzy in the 1st and Bobby Ryan 6 mins into the 2nd. All was looking great and the Ducks were control until 31 secs after Bobby scored, Bolts player, Jeff Halpern, wiped Hillers shut out by stuffing the puck through the netminders unprotected 5-hole which bounced off the inside of one leg, deflected off the other leg and crossed the goal line. I then thought "Oh man. Well hopefully that will be their only goal."

18 seconds later I would be shouting out loud in my apartment "Are you f--king kidding me?!" because Steven Stamkos would score an amazing goal after batting in his own rebound that was in mid-air when he fell down on the ice, chest up. It was unbelievable for two reasons, the goal itself and the fact that the Ducks let Tampa Bay score twice and once again, in only 18 seconds.
Anaheim would start the 3rd period out on a PK. Things were looking promising for that kill but with 20 secs left of that PK, St. Louis would slap the puck from the LW point and Ryan Malone who was moving in front of Hiller, would get a piece of that shot and put one in to tie up the score. And like that, what looked like a great game, soon started to look like the Ducks would let another win slip from their gloves. The boys would kill off two very important penalties in the remainder of the 3rd and the game would stay evened up til the final buzzer. That meant it was time for 4 on 4 OT. Both teams had a point but the Ducks needed that extra one for the full win. 4 on 4 would end up going 4 on 3 when Bolts player, Ryan Malone, got a penalty for cross checking sending Anaheim on a juicy OT Power Play.

40 seconds into that PP is when it all happened....

After the Bolts cleared the zone twice, I started to think, "This isn't looking good." But then Perry would pass the puck to Getzy who was at the LW point, Getzy would then move towards the RW switching places with Scotty and eventually handing it off to the Cap'n who then took his shot at a screened Mike Smith who was in net for the night. That shot would end up finding the back of the net, giving the Ducks their 3rd straight home and must needed win.
It would also send me jumping up and screaming as I threw my arms up high in celebrating the victory as if I were back at the Pond watching along with my fellow supporters. It felt great even though I ended up scaring my cats for a 2nd time that evening ( the 1st time was when Stamkos scored that amazing goal).

The feed of my Game Center Live was out right before they announced the 3-stars of the game and as I updated the stats on Twitter, I noticed that people who were at the game were tweeting about a fight that broke out in the stands over Scotty's signed souvenir stick. Giving them out is a new tradition for the Ducks this year. Teams like the Queens-um I mean, Kings and the Sharks do it already and I was happy that Anaheim finally decided to do it was well. As many already know, the stick in question was meant for a young girl but when Scotty tossed it over the glass, his aim wasn't so great, funny being that he has amazing accuracy shooting the puck, and it ended up be caught by another fan. When her friend/boyfriend/brother/I don't know... but when the guy next to her who obviously knew her took the stick, the guy behind him suddenly grabbed it in anger and then he put the dude in a head-lock and then all hell broke loose. The girl who caught the stick started punching the guy behind them who was punching the dude he had in the head-lock. When all was said and done, the little girl who Scotty gave the stick to, got it and everyone lived happily ever after. The video of the incident was put on YouTube quickly thereafter and I must admit, it's a shame that this all happened. What's even more surprising is that the guy who instigated the rough stuff was hardcore Ducks fan and pro-Skater, Mike V(Vallely). The little girl who Scotty tried to give the stick to happened to be one of his daughters and although it's good that he tried to make sure that the stick would go to her, I think he overreacted by doing what he did. And what's even more a shame is that the Ducks now have severed all ties with Mike V, who had his own blog on their official website, by which the link and blog have been removed. Even though Mike is really nice (I met him one time after a game at the Old No.7 Club), he's know new to getting into a scrap or two. If you look on YouTube, you'll find that he has gotten into a few of them in his life, but one would think he would've put all that behind him. Guess not. Here's the vid:

Tomorrow night:
The Ducks will try to get another win when they host the San Jose Sharks. SJ ended up winning tonight's game at the Shark Tank against the Philadelphia Flyers, 6 - 3 and Heatley ended up getting another Hat Trick. Hopefully they'll be tired tomorrow. We shall see. It also has been announced that Koivu is hoping to return out on the ice for this game as well as Wiz, who got a bruised foot from when the puck hit him last night in the 1st period. Wiz didn't play the rest of the game. It was also announced that Lupul suffered a minor upper-body injury during last nights game as well. He also hopes that it's nothing big and will return. One thing is for sure, the hill gets steeper in the 2 game of the Ducks 7 game home stand. It would be great if they end up getting 2 points from this match as well.

Go Ducks!

Wednesday, November 18, 2009

Shanahan Retires+Ducks Recall...

Two words I could think of when hearing the news late yesterday afternoon that Brendan Shanahan has finally decided to hang up his skates after he stepped out of the Devils roster during the start of the pre-season this year:

"Thank You."

In his 21 seasons with the NHL, Shanahan leaves the league with 656 career goals and is the 2nd highest LW goal scorer the NHL has seen. He also is a 3-time Stanley Cup winner while he was in Detroit and ranks 11th on the league's career goals list and is the only player with 600 goals and 2,000 penalty minutes. Many are now speculating that he can be the perfect fit for the NHL Players' Association which is currently in trouble after the firing of executive director Paul Kelly and the resignations of several union officials.

Whatever Shanahan chooses, it's no doubt that this definite Future-Hall of Famer will still have his feet in the NHL. So with that, once again: Thank You, Brendan Shanahan and good luck from here on out!

In other (Ducks) news:

Anaheim has recalled Center MacGregor Sharp from the Bakersfield Condors after putting Ryan Carter and Saku Koivu on the IR list.
"Sharp, 24, has appeared in 15 games for Bakersfield this season, collecting 4-10=14 points with 10 penalty minutes (PIM). At the time of his recall, Sharp was tied for the team lead in assists and appearances, ranked second in shots (48) and tied for second in scoring and points-per-game (0.93)." - Via DUCKS.NHL.COM
Maybe this will be the spark to set the fire that the Ducks need because we all know, things need to turn around for the better.

We will see how he does tomorrow night in Anaheim...
Go Ducks!

Tuesday, November 17, 2009


This isn't good...

The frustration continues. The Ducks come home after going 0-3-1 on their 4-game road trip. In Detroit, the Ducks actually stayed in the game with both them and the Red Wings scoring a total of 8 goals in the 3rd period alone. The Ducks would tied the game three times and the Red Wings regained the lead three times in that same period. Eventually Anaheim would lose the game 4 - 7. Zetterberg would get a hat trick but that 3rd goal was an Empty Net Goal. I don't really count those.

On Monday night, the team would be in Pittsburgh to play the latest Cup Champs again since losing to that same Penguins team in Anaheim on Nov. 3rd. The result would be yet another loss which made the road trip a complete disappointment. Jiggy also was in net that night, who is still looking for that 1st win of the season. Ducks: 2, Penguins: 5.

The team returned back to Anaheim early Tuesday morning and were at the Pond that same day
for a practice at noon in which Randy Carlyle juggled lines again in hopes of finding some working combination that will produce offense, something that the team is in desperate need of. Defense is another thing that the team needs and I don't know what it is. Hell! None of us know what it is? Why aren't this group of talented players able to pull a win?? Confidence is not there whatsoever. And you also have to think about the coaching system. Fans are calling for RC's head on a platter and maybe that's what is needed. Bob Murray has said many times over that he will in no way, send RC packing. He stands by his statement of changing the roster before ever changing things behind the bench. But with the Samuelis being back, they could go over BM's head and change things themselves. Even they're probably not too happy with how the season is going so far. Whatever is going on with the boys, it's hard to watch them play the game the way they are right now. Turnovers, bad defensive, passes being broken up by opposing teams, a dump + chase game that isn't working, power play efforts that are not producing. Overall, it's sloppy play and it isn't pretty. The coach has had one-on-one meetings with every player on the team to talk to them and to figure out what is going on with them. Hopefully things could be explained and problems worked out. They will have another practice before their first game in a 7-game home stand starting out on Thursday with the Tampa Bay Lightning, a team that has great offensive players such as St. Louis, Stamkos, Lecavalier, and Malone, just to name a few. It will be a true test to the already thinned out Anaheim Ducks defense.

So with that venting session now over, I don't know what to expect of this game but I will always have faith in my team and will be there in good times and bad.

As always:

Let's Go Ducks!

Friday, November 13, 2009

Tied for the bottom. Wow.

Frustrating. Completely frustrating.

Ducks went into Columbus tonight hoping for a win. And although they dominated the Blue Jackets on paper, Anaheim flies into Detroit tonight with 1 point after losing in the shoot out. But hey, let's look at the bright side, they are now tied for last place along with the Minnesota Wild in the Western Conference.

Totally frustrating.

Ducks started the game out in fine fashion drawing blood first in the 1st period when Bobby Ryan score an amazing goal from the LW circle giving Getzy and Perry the assists extending their white-hot point streak. That goal was scored right after the Ducks failed to produce on the PP. All was looking promising. I thought to myself, "Wouldn't that be freakin' amazing if the Ducks demolish the BJs just like the Red Wings did?!" It would be amazing if that thought would come true but alas, it didn't Rick Nash would put one in the back of the net on a hard shot after getting a 1 on 0 breakaway from the top of the LW circle. A shot too fast for Jiggys glove. All eyes would be on J.S. tonight who started since pulling his groin against the same Blue Jackets back in Anaheim. Everyone would be watching him to see if he could put his money where his mouth is since his controversial comments and win his first game of the season. J.S. was too aggressive against Nash by coming out too far of his crease.

Tied game going into the 2nd period.

Anaheim would come into period 2 on the PK after Getzlaf got knicked with a Holding Penalty late in the 1st. A penalty that came right after the play was stopped from Rick Nash crashing into Jiggy then throwing an elbow to his head knocking the netminder down. No penalty on Nash. Instead, Getzy gets one. Yeah, I know.
The Ducks would kill off the PK coming into the 2nd and the puck would find Getzy who came right out of the box. After entering the BJs zone he passed it to a streaking Todd Marchant who was streaking into the slot and put one in behind Columbus goal tender, Garon. Ducks up now 2 - 1.

I was happy and things were looking good. The last goal of the night would be the tying goal from Blue Jackets left-winger, Kristian Huselius. Who got the goal after controlling an amazing pass from teammate, Antoine Vermette who tricked Jiggy out of position yet again and gave Huselius the empty side of the net. The game then would go back and forth for both teams. Columbus would give the Ducks 5, yes, 5 Power Play opportunies in which Anaheim would come out 0 - 5 for the night giving our boys a 3 - 31 so far on the PP. Unacceptable. Anaheim would apply the offensive pressure towards the end of the 3rd period as well as getting a late PP that was washed out after Ryan Whitney got knicked for a very suspect looking boarding call. Actually, if I could, I would've give the BJs player who sold that call an Oscar because of his fine acting ability to get that call against Whits.

Nothing would come from the 3rd period. Heck! the Ducks would be the only team to get any SOG numbers in OT, 2 in case you were wondering. So Anaheim and Columbus would find themselves going into the good ol' Shoot Out. And I knew which players would be on that list for the Ducks: Getzy, Perry, Selanne. Surprise. I think everyone knew that. The Blue Jackets would shoot first and they would score on said first attempt. Getzlaf then stepped in, he skated, he beat Garon annnnnnnnd... goal post. The second attempt from Columbus would not be able to score. Then Perry stepped on the ice. I know. Wide, VERY wide right before shooting. He didn't fail on going wide right but he failed on scoring in his attempt. Rick Nash would go for the winning attempt and he would come out successful after going one footed when he lost his balance, freezing Jiggy down in the crease and getting a lucky goal after shooting the puck high into the net. Funny thing to see but "wow" funny.

So, the Ducks get 1 point and are now 6-8-3 with a 0.441 W% going into Detroit. They will face the Wings tomorrow at 16:00 PST. Sadly, I don't expect a win from the boys. They'll be tired even thought they will have a 35 min flight. It will be in less then 24 hrs. Never a good thing. But hey, Hiller could pull it off.

Absolutely frustrating.

All of the Ducks supporters patience is wearing thin, including mine. Something has to change. I keep saying this and I don't think that I'm the only one.

Something, has changed though. And it happened yesterday:

NHL reinstates Henry Samueli

NHL bastard-cough-I mean commissioner, Gary Bettman announced yesterday that the league lifted the suspension for Ducks owner, Henry Samueli in the following statement:

"We welcome Henry and Susan Samueli back as fully reinstated owners and members of the NHL community"

Susan, who was abiding by the terms of her husband’s suspension, also returned to her ownership role. And it leaves all of us fans wondering what will happen now that the owners are back. GM Bob Murray has made it clear that RC will be staying along with Scott Niedermayer and Jiggy, who have lately been churning in the rumor mill that has all three being let go and/or traded. Those are just rumors but I can't help to wonder if the Samueli's will be changing things around. I'm sure they know how their team is doing and I'm sure they're not happy. Only time will tell.

So for now, I will forget tonight and look forward. Jiggy wasn't able to get the win but he did show up for a lot of good saves. He hung in there and though I would've like to have seen better positioning on the goals he let it, well I take that back. That 2nd goal came off of a great pass. So I will say, better positioning from the first goal. There are many other things I would've wished differently from tonight's game. It wasn't all Jiggy. I don't want to point my finger just at him. The PP needs to produce, R2 needs to stop taking bad penalties, players need to stop turning the puck over...

Things just need to change. Let's hope a miracle happens tomorrow and we end the night void of frustration. Let's hope...

Go Ducks.

Wednesday, November 11, 2009

What a loss (both game and Koivu)

I blame the Ducks being bored to death. That's my excuse for them buuuuuuuuut it doesn't help with the fact that Brodeur is Brodeur and we can all agree on one thing

"Brodeur is amazing."

He's pretty much one of the reasons why the Devils walked away with a 3 - 1 win over the Ducks tonight in NJ. It also doesn't help that the Ducks were 0 - 6 on the PP-something's gotta change about that. The game started out with the Devils scoring a lucky goal on their first shot of the game which the Ducks are no stranger to having to claw back for a win. The Ducks would answer back in the 2nd period on a Corey Perry goal extending his pt streak to a career high 9 games as well as Getzy making them #1 currently in the NHL this season with having the streak. But that was all Anaheim would be able to produce for the rest of the game. NJ would score one to take the lead and right before the end of the 2nd period where the Ducks were on a PP and the puck would find Zach Parise who had a short handed breakaway then was able to stuff the puck and barely make it past the goal line. After that, Anaheim would have their chances but were unable to cash in on any of them and no one else would find the back of the net even though the Ducks would go on to out shoot the Devils 32 - 25.

In other news, I was shocked to hear that Saku Koivu hurt himself at this morning skate with a low body injury. Hopefully it's not serious and he'll come back soon.

Watching the game I couldn't help what came on my screen during the 2nd intermission with broadcasters, John Alhers and Brian Hayward. They were showing some new merch and I couldn't help myself. I must share this with the world.
I don't know what you call it but I say that this is gangsta!

Ducks travel out to Columbus to play the Blue Jackets on Friday who lost tonight at home against the Detroit Red Wings in a 1 - 9 match final. Ouch. Hopefully the Ducks can do the same.

Go Ducks!

"Being sarcastic..."

Quick post before the puck drops in NJ:

Following up from yesterdays fall-out due to Jiggy's comments in which he said to the media that he would rather "retire than be a back-up", J.S. addressed the media again this morning stating that:

Let’s be clear with something, I’m not about to retire. That was kind of being sarcastic on my part a little bit. What I really mean by that is I’m not having fun not playing. I’m not going to just stay on the bench and collect my money and say, ‘It’s OK. It’s no big deal."

Sounds like Jiggy realizes that making yesterdays comments were in bad form and now he's backpedaling. The puck will be dropping in NJ at the Rock where the Ducks will be taking on the Devils and I'm sure many are gonna wonder if J.S. will get the start to see if he can back up his words.

We will see tonight.

DEVILS (11-4-0) V DUCKS (6-7-2)
The Devils haven't beaten Anaheim in a regular-season game since 2002-03.

Let's Go Ducks!

Tuesday, November 10, 2009

Tidbits from around the NHL & "Oh, Jiggy."

Here's some quick news of things happening in the NHL today.

Today marks the beginning of the GM Meeting in Toronto, ON. GMs will meet behind doors to discuss matters throughout the league. Some hot topics that are known to be discussed:

*Head Shots:

GMs want to see these come to an end or at least cut to a minimum. Lately there have been a flurry of head shots on players so far in this early season. If they're intentional or not, GMs will discuss how the league can cut down on them.

A lot of GMs are saying that implementing the
Trapezoid behind the net was a bad idea and wish to take it out immediately. As well they say it will cut down on players getting hurt rushing towards a puck for and/or wiping out an Icing call by allowing goalies to come out to play the puck freely. If eliminated, expect Marty Turco's wet dreams to come true.

*Consistency in Officiating:
"Ref You Suck!" GMs as well as coaches, players, supporters, stick boys, parking maids, etc. want to see consistency in the officiating of the game and hope to do away with biased calls and bad calls for that matter. Well here's to hoping for that perfect world. Doubt it will ever come.

*Fighting/Helmet Inventions:
Ok. I know "Helmet Inventions" sounds funny but I didn't know how else to put it-Fighting. Oh yes, fighting. A lot of us love it, a lot of us want it to stay and this goes for everyone(SEE ALL THOSE WHO WANT CONSISTENT OFFICIATING) We have our reasons why we love it and why it's important but I won't get into that. Fighting is always a hot topic going into the GM meeting and many have talked about ways of doing it or getting rid of it, or how to work with it. And one thing is certain helmets. I've heard ideas from people that once a helmet comes off, the fight should be done. This is due to players getting punched right in the kisser, falling down and smacking their noggin right on the hard ice. It's really not a joking matter being that players have actually died from that. So with that you have people submitting their ideas or shall I say "inventions" that pertain to this. One idea that I like is having a visor that snaps off because some players hate to fight with one on just out of respect for the opposing player that they're getting involved into fisty-cuffs with. Hitting a visor with your meat-hook can do damage but so does planting one on the helmet. Some players such as Calgary Flames Cap'n, Jarome Iginla, will take the helmet off and some will ask the other player before engaging with a motion to the head saying, "Hey buddy, wanna do this dance sans the head gear?"
Proof of former Ducks D-monster, "Frenchy" Beauchemin at the 0:02 mark of this video giving the finger to the helmet motion:

One of the things that I think I would LOVE to see happen with the game is calling the play dead whenever the puck hits the ref. A lot of times, biscuits bouncing off a zebra can result in a scoring play which can be silly and plain unfair. I don't care if it has happened in the favour of my team or not, I just think it would be better.

*Victory Based On The Shoot Out:
Some hate the fact that tied games can go into the shoot out and some don't. I can safely say that I haven't made up my mind on this topic. I like the shoot out but then again, I am in different. I will also say that the S/O can be very intense and a lot of times have had me pacing back in forth like someone who was waiting to see if their most beloved-precious person in the world's do-or-die brain transplant was a success. Sorry if I have offended those who've actually gone through a brain transplant or have paced back in forth. I guess I really need to get involved in the pro/con argument on this topic.

Those are just a few and I'm sure much more will be discussed in the two-day meetings. We'll just have to wait to see what comes of them. Until then, I'm sure much coffee spiked with bourbon will be drunk and the near by Wal-Greens will find themselves on an unexpected shortage of heart-burn/indigestion medication. Only time will tell!

Jiggy comments to the media "Oh, Jiggy...."

TSN.CA have reported on some comments made by Ducks netminder J.S. Giguere stating that
he would "
rather retire than be a backup goalie." Where I immediately took the palm of my hand, slapped my forehead with it, shook my head and made my own statement to his which was "Oh, Jiggy..." For those who have no idea what I am talking about, (mainly due to the fact that you've been dead for the past year or just don't follow hockey-and I'm gonna go with the first one because if you don't follow hockey, why are you reading my blog? However, I am pleased if you're reading this and don't follow/have interest in the game and you choose to waste your time by doing such reading of my blog, then I just plainly count myself: flattered...) the Ducks find themselves in an interesting situation with their netminding department. Last year Jiggy was plain awful, I don't care if you wanna put it all on the fact of his father passing, which I think is tragedy. Don't get me wrong, but he has gone through tough, personal times and played an amazing game (SEE THE EPIC POST SEASON OF 2006-2007). When that was going on last year, Hiller stepped in, and BOY! did he do well! Jiggy's untimely comments come out of the fact that he really doesn't want to be a #2 goalie, and I totally get that. He is a proven netminder, Conn Smythe/Stanley Cup Winner, I see why he doesn't want to be a back-up.

But I think his comments were out of place and at the wrong time being that he will be returning to the lineup for the Ducks 4 game road trip starting tomorrow in at the Rock in NJ and by doing so, has probably added unnecessary stress or awkwardness to the locker room as well as adding pressure to GM Bob Murray. He also stated
"I want to play; that's when I have fun. Right now, this is not fun." Let's see, Jiggy has been out tending to a strained groin muscle, so with that I will say..

"THAT'S WHY YOU HAVEN'T BEEN PLAYING!!!!! Jiggy, you're hurt and we need you to be 100%! So get well, take care of yourself and come back to prove that you can be the #1. You've done well so far in this early season. It's just too bad that in those games, the rest of the players decided to not show up!
And don't listen to all the announcers saying how Hiller IS the #1 goalie, it's poppycock! But if you can't prove yourself and play horribly, then that's YOUR fault."

And then it these comments from J.S. could have been taken out of context. It IS the media so who knows what was meant. I will remind everyone that Jiggy has a NTC in his contract and he would have to waive that if he wanted to get traded. But until then, watch for the "rumour mills" to start turning. We will see how he does when Jiggy gets back in the crease. If you wanted to read more on what he said:
TSN Report on Giguere

I guess that's it for now. Until then I need to take care of myself and get better. Having a cold sucks. Almost as bad as Refs.

Let's Go Ducks.

Saturday, November 7, 2009

Ducks v Coyotes 07.11.09 [HOME]

That's all I can do!! Man, glad that's over! I shouldn't feel like this being that the lads came out in fine fashion with a full on attack giving Hiller a shut for about 47 mins of play. Then it started to fall apart. The Ducks saw fit to score 4 goals in the game and were up 4 - 0 until PHX player Keith Yandle would get one on the board at 6:27 in the 3rd, breaking the shut out. They would then immediately score two more from Upshall and Doan and come within one goal. It WAS pretty but got really stressful and ugly late in the last period. Sloppy playing would be the reason of that as well as a PP Goal that Doan notched.

But the lads hung on. Fought hard, blocked shots, made hits and by the skin of their teeth, came out on top to win the game.


All I can say is "Please fellas, don't do that again because visions of Minnesota started to flash right before my eyes!"

Go Ducks!

P.S. Play of the game had to be from Perry at 17:07. Wiz made a brilliant long pass to Getzy who then passed it off to Perry who was skating hard into the slot. Perry handled the puck, did some shakin', bakin', + dekin before flipping over Bryzys left shoulder right into the net to make it 3 - 0 for the Ducks!


1ST Period:
Selanne @ 2:49 / Niedermayer+Whitney

2ND Period:
Bobby Ryan @ 12:44 / Niedermayer
Perry @ 17:07 / Getzy+Wiz
3RD Period:
Mikey B @ 3:31 / Marchant
(PHX) Yandle @ 6:27
(PHX) Upshall @ 7:05 / Lombardi
(PHX) PPG Doan @ 14:36 / Lombardi+Aucoin

Ducks: 26
Coyotes: 30

(ANA)Hiller (W): 27/30
(PHX)Bryzgalov (L): 22/26

Ducks: 6 MINS
Coyotes: 14 MINS


@ 1600 PST V NJ Devils

Friday, November 6, 2009

Turning around

And the tide turns...

Ever since this past Friday (about a week ago) something in the Ducks have changed. A spark has set a flame and that flame is starting to turn into a wild fire. That night, the Ducks destroyed the Vancouver Canucks in a 7 - 2 win. The following night, which was Halloween on the road in AZ, the Ducks fought hard against a hot Coyotes team and lost in a shoot out, thanks to former Ducks netminder, Ilya Bryzgalov putting on a strong S/O performance. 3 days later, the Ducks would have the most recent Stanley Cup Champions, Pittsburgh Penguins, back in Anaheim since the epic 2006-2007 season. It would prove to be one of the most exciting games so far in this early season. It went back and forth with the Ducks scoring first on a Perry Stumble Shot. The Pens would notch one goal more on the Ducks towards the end of the 3rd where the Pens scored, then seconds later, Koivu would tie it up and almost a minute after that, the go ahead goal from Pittsburgh would find the back of the net. Until the final horn, the Pens withstood a barrage of offensive pressure from the Ducks. Fleury would come out strong, and Sid the Kid would make an amazing save(that's right: save) to block a sure goal from Scotty by stacking the invisible pads right on the corner of the LW side of the net with Fleury too far out of his crease and down on the ice. The Ducks went down and in 3 games were 1-1-1.

And although the Ducks weren't 3 - 0 it was safe to say that they looked different and were playing harder. Something that couldn't be said for the opening month of this years season. In the game against the Pens, they had completely improved on the Power Play and fans could taste a win coming!
And with that, it brings us up to last night. The Nashville Predators were in Anaheim and riding a 3 game winning streak. That streak would come to an end with the Ducks playing hard and continuing on doing well with the PP. Hiller was back in net, Jiggy still out nursing a pulled groin. The whole team came out strong and save for a couple of sloppy plays and fumbling of the puck a few time, the Ducks would blank the Preds in a 4 - 0 win giving Hiller his first shut out of the season. A much deserved and needed win.

Tomorrow, they will face the Phoenix Coyotes but this time in Anaheim. On October 31st, it was announced that the NHL were granted their bid and now own the Yotes. As well as this news, D-man James Wisniewski was suspended for 2 games a few days after that match for an apparent 'dirty' hit on Cap'n Shane Doan. A hit that was not called for a penalty during the game on the 31st. A hit that was clean. But yet being that Wiz is apart of the Anaheim Ducks, the league felt the need to suspend him. Since then, a handful of bad calls have gone against the Ducks. Very suspect. In the 2nd period of the Halloween match with the Yotes, Shane Doan dropped the gloves with Wiz, when he tumbled on top of him, the fight was over. He felt the need to throw one more punch to Wiz. That in itself is dirty as players have the code of not hitting anyone on the ice. The Yotes then played against the Colorado Avalanche a few days after that match. During that game, Doan hit Kyle Quicny with a blatant elbow shot to the head. Quincy was hurt but was able to skate off the ice and head to the locker room on his own will. Doan was not penalized. No suspension was given. Looks like the Coyotes are now in full coverage of the NHL. Which is a shame. Tomorrow Wiz will be returning and without a doubt to a roaring Pond in which I expect, a standing ovation. Doan has become hated even more so now. I have lost all respect of Doan, I follow in my fellow supporters footsteps in which we are all wishing for another win. A good win and hopefully a few good hits to Doan. 'm also hoping that by the end of tomorrow night, I will be cheering all the way from up here in the Pacific Northwest, "Let's Go Ducks! Well done!"

Which I really miss doing that from the inside of the Pond itself.

Saturday, October 24, 2009

A Special Tribute To One Who Fought So Bravely

In Loving Memory to Jennifer Leigh Dire (January 3rd, 1973 - October 23rd, 2009). Wife of my good friend, Mike. May you find the strength you need through this hard time. I will be here for you. All my thoughts and love.

It's never easy hearing that a good friend of yours is going through hard times such as my good friend, Mike. Yesterday I found out that his wife, Jen, passed away yesterday evening from cancer. I won't say she "loss" the battle to cancer. I actually don't like to say someone "loss" to an illness, seems like it labels the person to be weak. So I won't say that. From what Mike described to me, I can safely say that Jen wore her smile til the end of her time here on earth. And say what you want about spirituality but I know she is somewhere better and no longer in pain.

I worked with Mike at Disneyland. First met him on the Steam Trains when I entered the "Westside" part of the parks attractions department coming from Fantasyland. Mike always has a personalty that can make you light up on a bad day. Even though you can say that he can be rather crass and crazy, he's just a great character. I remember him telling me of Jen going through cancer, of the tough times she was experiencing and how it was to see through the eyes of someone being there for his love. I was there for him when they found out the cancer returned 2 weeks after hearing that she was clear. But no matter what, Mike always kept that smile on his face and she always had her humour about herself through her pain.

I never really knew Jen. I never spent anytime with her. But I had the honour and privilege one day to meet her and shake her hand after recovering from her mastectomy when they visited Disneyland. They sat next to my position on the steam train. And although she wasn't physically 100%, she still manage to have that great smile beaming radiantly. I know that all who have been able to spend their time with Jen will tell you that they're better people for doing so. It's not everyday you meet those such as the two.

But I will tell you that I am a better person to know Jen through my friend.

My best wishes are with you, Mike. May you find peace in this time of need and may you carry on that light that shined so bright from her. I know you will.

Thursday, October 22, 2009

An uphill climb + the power of supporters

I'll just jump right in and say that a lot of us Duck fans were really excited going into the beginning of the season. During the summer the Ducks did a little bit of "tinkering". Had one of the biggest news on draft day with GM Bob Murray trading away defense powerhouse, Chris Pronger, to the Philadelphia Flyers for former Ducks forward, Joffrey Lupul(in case you don't know yet he was traded to the Edmonton Oilers for Prongs), D-man Lucas Sbisa, a few draft picks, a pair of shoes, a brand new puppy, brand new wall to wall hardwood flooring in Murrays house... you get it. As well as Lupul and Sbisa coming in, the Ducks penned former Montreal Canadians cap'n and Selanne's fellow countryman, Saku Koivu. Also out was D-man great Francois Beauchemin to the Toronto Maple Leafs. Along with former Tampa Bay Lightning beast, Evgeny Artyukhin and a couple of veteran D-men new to the Ducks, things were looking promising coming into the new season.

However it hasn't been so amazing for the 1st 8 games. As of last night, the Ducks currently sit at the bottom of the mountain in the Pacific Division with a 3-4-1 record and measly 7 pts. With already 2 shutouts to the NY Rangers (Away) and the St. Louis Blues (Home), the Ducks are now looking at a growing uphill climb. At home in Olympia, I've watched each game wearing either my Selanne (away) or Neidermayer (home) sweater, listening to Stevie C via AM830 stream and the video feed going through my telly. I've watched with frustration from the lack of playing coming out of my team. And last night, I hoped for a dominating game out of the Ducks when they played the Dallas Stars. Now, when I say "I hate the Stars", I really really really mean that I HATE them. There are teams that I respect, like the Red Wings. I know that the Wings are a great team and I respect them, I just can't stand their supporters. With the Stars, I don't respect them save for Mike Modano. I hate them and I don't like any of their fans. So I was hoping that the Ducks would go out last night and embarrass them. But it was just hope, the Ducks would get scored on twice in the 1st and once in the 2nd but Ryan Getzlaf would get a goal back towards the end of that 2nd period. In the 3rd, the Ducks would close the gap when Joffrey Lupul put one in the back of the net to get the team within 1 goal of a tie. However dirty, cheap Steve-Freaking-Ott got an open net goal and the Ducks would go on to lose 2 - 4.
For only one period did the Ducks look absolutely in control and that was the 3rd, 20 mins. Of course everyone knows that a team has to play all 60 mins doing well on offense as well as defense. I just hope that this kind of playing, or in the Ducks case, barely playing ceases. I'm sure all of us Duck fans think the same.

And speaking of fellow supporters, today I received my Ducks Care Package in the mail from fellow fan, Vicky. I was excited to get it inside and open it up. In the package was a Ducks t-shirt from this past Saturday's shutout against the Ducks game, a programme from Opening Night, a magnet schedule and one thing that I've been trying to get for a few years: Scott Niedermayer's autograph on a puck. Which was the biggest surprised. Here's a photo

The fact that someone sent me this care package was really touching. When I looked at the the programme, I couldn't help but get a little knotted in the back of the throat. The hardest thing is being away from my home and being able to watch games with my fellow supporters but when I looked at it, holding it in my hands, It felt like home. So with that, I want to give my sincerest Thanks to Vicky. Ducks fans are the best, hands down. And the Ducks are the best of course. I just want them to start winning!

Sunday, October 18, 2009

And it begins... PT III


It started out with at the end of summer. Attending all 4 Ducks training camp practices(called out sick from work for two of them). I was deep in it. Their disappointing early exit of the first round from the previous post season left all of us fans wanting more and needing it. I was by then a hardcore supporter and it was like being a 12 yr old kid again. Fascinated with the game and with my team. I was joining Ducks message boards, keeping my eyes on the news as much as I could (I didn't have the NHL Network then), going to every Ducks Watch Party that I could, attending practices and other events(the free ones). Like I said, I was in deep and I loved it. I looked into getting the lowest priced SSH package but by the time I looked into it and talked with a Ducks SSH representative, they were sold out. Next package was the 'Buy two-get two free" however, at $1,500, I wasn't able to afford it. I did the next best thing, Ticket-Exchange and Stub Hub were my way of seeing games. I also had met fellow SSH's that would have an extra ticket here and there. My girlfriends-friend who took us to a couple of games the previous season, also helped out and there was Overall, I missed about 10 games the whole season and that includes 1 from the pre-season. I also went on my first away game to Glendale, AZ. It was the Ducks last game of the season against the Coyotes. The night before, I attended the Playoff clinching game with who happen to be my most hated team, the Dallas Stars. The following day, my girlfriend and I hit the road to AZ. It was a fun trip and was three months away from what would be coming...

In 2007, my girlfriend and I visited her hometown: Olympia, WA. I will say that when we first started dating and when things got serious she had mentioned to me that it was her plan to move back home. We spent two weeks and I feel in love with the state. It was a big change from living in Anaheim, and personally I wanted something new and different, somewhere were I could live and not have to pay an arm and a leg. So after giving much thought about it. We decided that we would move in the summer of 2009. I knew that I would be leaving a lot behind: My friends, my family and yes, my team. It's was a tough decision that I am still trying to adjust to this day. I knew that the only place for me to drive to see a proper hockey match would be in Vancouver, B.C.

For a proper send off, I made sure to attend at least one post-season game. I had always wanted to be in a playoff atmosphere. We attended game 3 which was at home. The Ducks were coming into the post as an 8th seeded team but didn't show it when they took games 1+2 in San Jose. They lost game 3 at home but won game 4. I was not satisfied going to a losing playoff game. I wasn't able to get a ticket for game 6 which was back at home after the Sharks took game 5. It would have been the ideal game to go to being that the Ducks closed out the series to upset the Sharks and moved to round 2.
I needed to go to a 2nd round game and through my roommate he surprised me the day of game 3 with a club seat ticket that his dad gave him! It was amazing! The Ducks V The Red Wings in a Semi-Final series. The Ducks had won a few days before back in Detroit in an triple OT goal by Todd Marchant. They would go and win game 3 but lose the next to. The morning of game 6 at home, a few of us went to the Pond at 6 in the morning. One of the local news stations was doing a morning piece and fans were invite to attend. My roommate, my good friend and I myself entered the Pond and we were directed through one of the section 200 tunnels. Another dream came true that day, we saw other fans walking out on the ice and so we joined. Along with that, we sat on the teams bench and took part in the event where it ended outside and all who attended were given two tickets for the do-or-die match!

This would be my last game at home before moving up north. I didn't know who else I wanted to spend it more than with my girlfriend whom, bless her heart, has to deal with my addiction(it's like Fever Pitch). The Ducks would win game 6 but lose game 7 by one late goal in the 3rd Period after they rallied to a 3 goal comeback to tied it up. I wish they could have gone to the Conference Final. I would have been there. I would have been there if they made it to the Stanley Cup Final. I know that when it happens again, I will make the trip down. So the move was made on May 31st and we arrived in Olympia on June 1st. Like I said, it's been hard to adjust without my team and my new friends that I have met since who still live back home and get to attend games.

And that brings us caught up to today...

My reason for this blog is to share what it's like to be a fan outside of my home, outside of my beloved Pond. For now I have been following the early new season through Center Ice and Game Center Live. It's interesting as well being that Washington state has no NHL hockey team, which I could see one being here. So far it's the WHL and I hope to see a couple of games but until I fly down home, this is were I will be unless I can make it to Vancouver.

So here we go. My thoughts on the game and on the Ducks for all to read. I hope this is a success and I hope my team wins.

We are go....

Saturday, October 17, 2009

And it begins... PT II

I was submerged and I was loving it. The end of the 2005-2006 season saw hopes fade quickly as the Edmonton Oilers, the 8th seeded team, took the Conference Final series at 4-1 against the Ducks. I had yet to go to my first live match. It was something I wanted to do for a very long time.

It wasn't until February 7th, 2007 my dream came true.

A friend had bought the tickets for me as an Xmas gift. It was at home against the Sharks, being that I don't like San Jose, I was looking forward to it. It was surreal. Walking through the doors of the Pond were amazing. Every time I had passed it on the freeway on my way to work (5 days a week), I'd longed to watch a Ducks game. The whole event is a blur to me. I was like a kid again. Passing fans in the hallways, wearing their sweaters, supporting their team. This is what I wanted to be apart of.
Our section was 408. I know, top section but I find that the real fans sit in the 400's. My heart beat quickly and til this day I can say that time slowed down when I emerged from the tunnel with the cool draft breaking along the skin of my face, moving through my hair, to stand and to view in panoramic glory:

The Pond.
In it's entirety.

It hit me. It was a new feeling. A great feeling. Sure I have been to baseball games at Angels Stadium but this was different and I embraced it. There's something about seeing a hockey game that sets itself apart from seeing any other sport live. I haven't watched a live basketball game so I won't lump that in but there's something in the air at a hockey arena and it's literally the smell. Also the fact that it feels nice and cool, but hockey rinks have a certain scent about them and it's amazing. I guess my experience of walking from the hallway and into my seat can be compared to sitting in the Millennium Falcon and looking out the window whilst starting the jump into hyperspace where the stars are just stars that begin to stretch then you shoot into fast speed. In case you need a reminder what that's like...

I was glued to my seat for the entire 60 mins of the game. Well, I jumped up when the 2 Duck goals were scored which were so amazing, I can't even remember. With a 2 - 3 loss to the much hated Sharks, a couple of beers drunk. We were heading out the door but not without looking back before walking out the tunnel to take one more view of what would be my new home. It was the only game I would be able to attend that season. A season of which saw the Ducks hoisting the Cup for the first time in a game that I watched whilst on lunch break at Disney when I was working the Main Street Parade with a group of other Duck fans cheering on our team to take the series from Ottawa. One of our supervisors even made the announcement "Do not drive on Katella going back to the 57. Avoid all streets close to the Pond tonight, the Ducks just won." I was wishing that I was with my fellow supporters inside that arena celebrating. That was the night of the Cast Member preview of the Finding Nemo attraction. Which I had a ticket for. That's when I saw my friend Jasmin, whom was donning her Ducks sweater with black, gold, white, and orange ribbons in her hair along with confetti. I ran to her to hug her in celebration when she told me, "I was there!" Sure I was in awe of her but I was also jealous. Needless to say, it was a great season and a great summer.

The 2007-2008 season, I returned back to the Pond for 3 games: Stars (who I absolutely hate), Sharks, and the Avs (a game that I took my father to, it would be our first together and being that I was into the Avs in the mid 90's I wanted to see them even though they weren't the same team).
I was back living in Anaheim with a complete nutter as a landlady, who sued me and won-apparently when you old and crazy judges believe you, watching as many games as I could on tv. Halfway through that season, my girlfriend(who I started dating at the end of 2006) and I decided to move in together and did so in West Anaheim. I was free to fully enjoy the games from home, being able to scream and throw my arms up in sheer excitement every time a goal was scored. It was great!
Sadly the Ducks weren't able to get past the Stars in the first round of the post season and defend their title. It was a disappointing series. But what can you do when you have the "Hangover"

The next season, I would pretty much become an unofficial SSH as well as making a big life-changing decision....

And it begins.... PT. I

Where to begin.
What to say.

I guess I won't go the direction of your usual proper introductions. Just going to plainly say what my whole blog thing is about in one sentence:

"I am a fan of hockey, more importantly I am a die-hard Anaheim Ducks supporter."

Yes, THAT Anaheim Ducks team. The team with the "Dirty Goons". The "Disney" team. And whatever outside Duck fans say to us. I've heard it all. But I am proud to be a fan of this talented team. And of course I am of fan of the great sport of hockey in general. Sure there are teams that I hate and there are teams that I really respect and like. I love the sport.

My journey:

Well don't know if I would call it a "journey" more like "My Story". What is my story? Well, I was born and raised in Southern California. Got into hockey right around the early 90's and I will honestly say that it was the "Disney" film, yes, THAT "Disney" film that help sparked my interest in the sport. No one in my neighbourhood played hockey, my father was a baseball, basketball, American football fan. My friends were into video games. I was on my own, 12 years old, a Southern Californian kid. It's sad but true what people say about SoCal hockey, or shall I say the lack of attention it draws and of course it has changed since '92 but back then, I didn't know anyone who had interest in the sport, and after that film was release, after I saw it, I was hooked. Say what you want about how silly it is to support a team that was started by Disney, I don't care. Hell, I think Disney should never be allowed to start a franchise and/or own a sports team again. But that was the past, the Ducks aren't that team anymore and they aren't own by Disney and any smack talk or linking the Ducks & Disney is rather sad. It's pathetic and just know that all of the current supporters of the team think it's pure jealously now because our team since then have proved that they are a legit team, ask Lord Stanley.

I wasn't able to follow the Ducks that much in those early years due to the fact that my father had been laid off 3 years prior to the teams inaugural season, so pretty much the only channels on the telly that we were able to get were a whooping number of 4. We had to cut the cable because frankly, we couldn't afford it(hell, I could tell that my father was sad at the fact that he couldn't do anything to help his son after it was known that I wanted to learn how to play the sport). And being that I was a kid who didn't have much of an attention span, let's be honest, all young boys don't, I kind of lost touch with the team after a year. It wasn't until 1995 when my interest was sparked again. This time the team was one led by Joe Sakic in Colorado along with players like Foote, Forsberg, Lemieux, Deadmarsh, Ricci, Ozolinsh, and Roy. By that time, I was a teenager barely able to hold steady on the roller blades that a family friend bought me and long gone were the days when I would outline a goal with duct tape on the front of the garage door so that I could practice my wrist and slap shots. I was on my way of learning how to rock and roll. By that time my main focus was music and learning how to play it.

Throughout the years I would keep dipping my head back into things around the NHL and the Ducks, it was the Avalanche in '96. In 2003 the Ducks had made their first Stanley Cup final having a go with the NJ Devils to 7 games and failing to hoist the cup. By that time, I was getting ready to live out on my own, moving from where I grew up in Riverside, CA to Anaheim, CA. I had yet to watch a game live and really wanted to but, I was involved with someone who thought sports were stupid and would mock me whenever I turned on the telly to watch hockey or footie(soccer). Needless to say that relationship was over in 2005 and I was back living in Riverside but still working in Anaheim. That hockey season was, well non-existent and when it was time to restart the NHL for the 2005-2006 season, we saw a different Ducks team, one that wasn't owned by the evil rat, one with newer and less embarrassing sweaters/colours. With better players. It was an exciting time and my ears were perking up, my eye brows were raising, my interest was renewed. I'd say it wasn't until the last half of the 2005-2006 season that I decided to take the deep plunge. The water felt fine and was ready.

I jumped in head first. Who knew that I would never want to get out?