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Sunday, September 23, 2007

Pre-game Post

So I am feeling better and will be going to tonight's game.  But in the meantime, here is today's non game news.

Ducks support Project Playhouse

Anaheim Ducks player Corey Perry signs, greets at Project Playhouse event designed to raise money for family, children’s shelters.

By Michael Miller
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NEWPORT BEACH — Dean Perkins has been an Anaheim Ducks fan for three years now. He would have been a fan for four years, but his fourth birthday is still a ways off.
The Costa Mesa resident grew up in a household that practically reveres the recent Stanley Cup champions — and he had gotten the spirit himself almost before he learned to walk.
According to his mother, Jennifer Perkins, Dean counts the Wild Wing mascot among his personal friends, and he’s anticipating the day when he’s old enough to play on a team.
“Last season, he used to sleep with his hockey stick and puck,” Perkins said Saturday at Fashion Island, where the Ducks recently sponsored one of the Project Playhouse exhibits that raise funds for charity. “We’d try to take it away from him, and he’d wake and grab it back. So we think he’ll end up playing hockey.”

Read the rest here - Link

Another Jason King interview

VANCOUVER - Jason King scored twice in his first three pre-season games, but knows his ascent to a permanent Anaheim Ducks roster spot will be a challenge.

"It's going to be an uphill climb, no doubt," said the former Vancouver Canucks right-winger. "But they've left it on my shoulders and I respect that.

"It's totally up to me on how I play and I think they're looking for a little more scoring and that's my game."

Considering the mind games King has played the last two years - career-threatening post-concussion syndrome and failed contract negotiations with the Canucks that saw him bolt to the Swedish Elite League last season - battling for an NHL roster spot is a welcome challenge.

Especially after Ducks general manager Brian Burke gave King a new lease on NHL life at the June draft in a swap for diminutive forward Ryan Shannon.

"It meant a lot," said King, who's on a two-way deal with the Ducks. "When you go to Europe, you don't know if you're going to get that opportunity again. And when you start feeling good, you're confident in your game and I know I can play at the NHL level."

In 55 games with Skelleftea HC last season, King managed 23 points (12-11) in his first exposure to the international ice surface. More importantly, he went injury free and now the 26-year-old Cornerbrook, Nfld. native must prove he's more than a depth player.

Read the rest here - Link

The OC Register had a great article on concussions (with some input from the Ducks)

Trevor Letowski never saw it coming.

The Carolina center, the puck nowhere near him, was blindsided by Pittsburgh's Colby Armstrong last October. The shoulder hit to his chin knocked Letowski unconscious instantly, sending him into a 360-degree top-like spin before he crashed face first to the ice. Letowski spun another 360 on the ice before he came to a stop facedown in a pool of blood.

Ottawa's Patrick Eaves was knocked out by a similar Armstrong hit in the 2007 Stanley Cup playoffs. Eaves, like Letowski, was carried off the ice on a stretcher. Armstrong was not penalized for either hit, which were both legal under current rules.

As the Ducks and Kings prepare to open the 2007-08 National Hockey League season Saturday in London, coaches, current and former players and doctors who treat them maintain the NHL's failure to deter headshots and escalation in dangerous play in recent years has placed the league and its players on a potentially catastrophic course.

"Is it going to take a death to make the NHL see the problem?" said Dr. Charles Tator, a professor of neurosurgery at the University of Toronto, who has treated NHL players with concussions.

The Armstrong hits were bookends to another bloody NHL season in which players missed 760 games due to concussions and related symptoms, a 41 percent increase over the previous season, according to an Orange County Register study of NHL injuries over the past 10 years

Read the rest here - Link

Sharkspage has a great inteview with Dan Wood, primary Ducks reporter from the OC Register.

Q] How long have you been covering the Anaheim Ducks for the OC Register, and how long have you been covering the NHL and sports in general?
[DW] I've covered the Ducks for the OC Register since March of 2000. Before that, I had covered the Sharks for the Contra Costa Times since the Sharks entered the NHL in 1991. I started covering sports in 1980, after graduating from San Jose State.
[Q] The Ducks earned their first Stanley Cup championship, and the first NHL championship for California last season. How was the reaction from fans and the general media over the summer? Did the Stanley Cup foray into any entertainment or unusual venues that may not regularly comment on the NHL?
[DW] Well, the Ducks have pretty much guaranteed they will sell out every home game this season, and had to cap season-ticket sales at 15,000, so I guess that pretty much answers the question about fan reaction. The fans certainly responded loudly and enthusiastically during the playoff run, but this is Southern California. People here like winners. Always have, always will. The media is the media. Hockey will never rival football, basketball and baseball here. Yes, the Ducks did quite a few TV gigs and things of that nature. I'm sure their PR department could give you all the specifics, if you want them. I know, for example, that Jean-Sebastien Giguere, Chris Pronger and Brad May appeared with the Stanley Cup on the Tonight Show with Jay Leno. There were a lot of other TV appearances, as well.

Read the rest here - Link

He posted some great picks here - Link