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Monday, October 8, 2007

Monday News - A whole lot of news for you!

So, here I was thinking that Monday would be a slow news day and I could relax a little bit.  Boy was I wrong.  Well I have coverage of the Ducks return to Anaheim, an update on Giggy and Pahlsson, info on the Ducks banner raising and a whole lot of other interesting articles. So here you go!

Ducks injury update via MVN

The Ducks did not have a full practice today at the Honda Center. They went through an off-ice workout only, with the exception of Jean-Sebastian Giguere, Sami Pahlsson and Travis Moen. Those three did skate on the ice. Moen apparently broke his nose after being hit hard in the game against the Columbus Blue Jackets. He did not play against the Penguins, but is fine at this point and will be on the ice on Wednesday night.

Pahlsson and Giguere are both recovering from sports hernia surgery - Pahlsson’s was on September 5 and Giguere’s was on August 6. They continue to get closer to coming off the injured reserve and are listed as “possible” for Wednesday’s home opener against the Boston Bruins.

Read the rest here - Link

Ducks are going to raise the Championship banner on Wednesday

Festivities Begin at 6:45 p.m.; Fans in Attendance Will Receive Mini Replica Championship Banners

The 2007 Stanley Cup champion Anaheim Ducks will open their regular season home schedule at Honda Center on Wednesday, Oct. 10 vs. Boston.  Opening night will include pre-game festivities beginning at 6:45 p.m. for the standing-room only crowd in attendance.  Fans will watch as the 2007 Stanley Cup, Western Conference and Pacific Division champion banners are raised to the Honda Center ceiling, with the opening face-off taking place following the conclusion of a very special pre-game ceremony.

“We’re hoping every fan will be in their seat at 6:45 p.m. to witness this incredible sports moment in Southern California history,” said Ducks Executive VP/COO and Anaheim Arena Management President/CEO Tim Ryan.  “We’re expecting a standing-room only crowd and would like to encourage fans to arrive early so they don’t miss a second of the special ceremonies planned.”

Prior to the commencement of pre-game ceremonies, Ducks players, coaches and executives along with sponsors, VIP’s and premium seat holders will walk down a red carpet entrance into Honda Center on the southeast corner of the building.  Fans are encouraged to arrive early to cheer on the players as they enter the building before suiting up for the game. Players should start arriving around 4:30 p.m., but getting to the arena before that time might help.

Read the rest here - Link

Duck Notes from the official site

HOME, AT LAST: After a 13-day road trip that made stops in London, Detroit, Columbus and Pittsburgh, the Anaheim Ducks now prepare for their 2007-08 home opener against the Boston Bruins on Wednesday...the 2007 Stanley Cup Championship banner will be raised prior to the game, with festivities beginning at 6:45 p.m…the Ducks finished the road swing with a 1-3-1 record, earning points on Sept. 30 vs. Los Angeles (W, 4-1) and Oct. 3 at Detroit (SOL, 3-2)...Anaheim and Boston did not play during the 2006-07 regular season...their most recent game was Jan. 16, 2006 when the Bruins earned a 4-3 win in overtime at FleetCenter...Boston's last appearance in Anaheim was on Oct. 19, 2003 when the Bruins skated to a similar 4-3 overtime victory.

DUCKS SELLOUT STREAK CONTINUES:  A standing-room-only crowd will be on hand Wednesday as the Ducks play the first of 40 regular season games at Honda Center this year (one “home” game in England)…it will mark the club’s 35th consecutive sellout (23 regular season plus 12 playoff games)…the Ducks capped season ticket sales at 15,000 this past August and have started a waiting list for future orders…the Ducks recorded 25 total sellouts last season, the most since the 1997-98 season…the club's average attendance (16,377) and percent capacity (95.4%) were also the highest since the 1997-98 season.

DUCKS TOUGH AT HOME: The Ducks finished the 2006-07 regular season with a home record of 26-6-9, tying the club record for home wins in a season (26-10-5 in 2005-2006)...Anaheim also went 10-2 at home in the 2007 Stanley Cup playoffs, clinching all four series wins at Honda Center…the club is 46-11-12 in their last 69 regular season games at Honda Center dating back to Nov. 25, 2006…the Ducks have a .681 winning percentage (89-33-33, 211 pts.) over the last 155 home games, earning at least one point in 122 of the 155 contests (19-6-8 in the last 33 home games of 2002-03 season and 19-11-11 in 2003-04) addition, the Ducks have not been shut out at home since March 1, 2006, a streak that has lasted 52 games…that is the third-longest streak without being shut out at home in team history (92 games, 4/9/95-10/10/97 and 54 games, 3/8/98-10/29/99).

HOME OPENERS: In 13 home openers, Anaheim has a record of 5-7-1...last season, the Ducks snapped a four-game "home-opening" losing streak with a 4-3 victory over the Los Angeles Kings on Oct. 6, 2006 at Honda Center...prior to that four-game streak, Anaheim went unbeaten in four consecutive home openers from 1997-2000...below are the results from each home opener:

Read the rest here - Link

Road trip analysis by MVN

Having arrived late Saturday night, the Ducks are finally home. Nothing could be sweeter than sleeping on your own pillow in your own bed after having been gone for nearly two weeks, not to mention some good home cooking and family time.� The Ducks were given a day of rest on Sunday, and deservedly so after their 12,000 plus mile, five game road trip to start the season.

The first two games in London were split between the Ducks and the Kings and things did not go so well for the Ducks after that. Ilya Bryzgalov earned the Ducks a point in Detroit by keeping them in the game and making three times as many saves as Dominik Hasek had to make. The Ducks followed that up by a listless performance in Columbus that couldn’t wake them up even when the cannons kept booming to announce a Blue Jackets goal. The Ducks tried to respond in Pittsburgh and gave a much better effort and reduced their penalties as well, but the Penguins took advantage of their chances and bested them by one goal.

The results are a 1-3-1 start to the season which is a far cry from the Ducks start last year who went 12-0-4 in their first 16 games. The Ducks have played the most games of any team but finally will get a bit of a rest with only one game this week on Wednesday night. They will then have back to back games on Sunday and Monday and a third game in four nights the following Wednesday. The schedule just isn’t going to get easier for the Ducks.

The penalty kill is 73.5% successful. Clearly they are missing Sami Pahlsson’s presence. It will be interesting to see if the penalty kill improves after he returns off the injured reserve list. At this point it isn’t even remotely close to last season’s 85.1%, which was good for 4th overall in the NHL.

Read the rest here - Link

Ducks Announce  a new jewelry (err fan loyalty ring) program

The Anaheim Ducks have announced a fan loyalty ring program in partnership with the Herff Jones Company of Indianapolis, Indiana that will allow fans to purchase commemorative 2007 Stanley Cup Championship rings, along with commemorative jewelry and limited edition-numbered coins celebrating the team’s championship season.

“The ring program is the perfect opportunity for Ducks fans to share in the celebration of the 2007 Stanley Cup Championship,” said Anaheim Ducks Executive VP/COO and Anaheim Arena Management President/CEO Tim Ryan. “In addition to its impressive look, the commemorative ring is a tremendous keepsake fans can be proud of.”

Steve Forell of the Herff Jones Company was selected by Anaheim Ducks owners Henry and Susan Samueli to design and manufacture the club’s 2007 Stanley Cup Championship rings. The rings were produced in the company’s Warwick, Rhode Island facility and will be presented to the Ducks as part of a private ceremony prior to the club’s home opener on Oct. 10 vs. the Boston Bruins (7:05 p.m.).

Fans can share in the excitement by owning an Anaheim Ducks fan version of the 2007 Stanley Cup ring, which will be available for purchase on Oct. 10 at Honda Center. That night, Ducks fans will have the opportunity to view the complete selection of jewelry items with designs featuring great moments from the team’s 2006-07 season at Honda Center.

Read the rest here - Link

OC Register Ducks blog has a few notes on the team

Amazingly enough, the Ducks found their way to Honda Center on Monday. After a grueling two-week road swing that took them to London, Detroit, Columbus and Pittsburgh, everyone still remembered the route.The only player missing was center Andy McDonald, whose wife, Gina, had gone into labor. Saying he had planned the move all along, Coach Randy Carlyle opted against holding practice, having the players go through merely an off-ice workout instead. After all the travel, and four losses, including one in overtime, on the season-opening, five-game trip, the idea was to both clear minds and give bodies a chance to heal in preparation for Wednesday night’s home opener against the Boston Bruins.

Read the rest here - Link

The Pittsburgh Penguins did a nice article on Carlyle including a mullet shot and two rare photos of him actually smiling.

Throughout his hockey career, Randy Carlyle dreamed about winning a Stanley Cup championship.

He just didn’t imagine he’d have to go to California to do it.

Carlyle, an Ontario native, saw his dreams come true last season as the head coach of the Anaheim Ducks. He guided the team to its first Stanley Cup championship – 14 years after the franchise was born in the Golden State.

Randy Carlyle won a Stanley Cup championship with Anaheim last year.

“Winning the championship is something we all strive to do. I wasn’t fortunate enough to win it as a player, and I found a way to do it as a coach,” he said. “It’s just a culmination of 31 years from a playing standpoint and from a management standpoint.”

Even though Carlyle broke into the NHL with the Toronto Maple Leafs over the parts of two seasons (1976-77 and ’77-78), his career took off after he was traded to Pittsburgh.

The 5-foot-10 defenseman racked up 18 points combined in 94 games during his stint with the Leafs. However, he flew past that mark in his first season in Pittsburgh (1978-79) when he produced 47 points (13+34) in only 70 games.

“I was a young player who got traded from Toronto to Pittsburgh and it was probably the greatest thing that could have happened to me, as far as my career is concerned,” he said. “I was a sixth or seventh defenseman in Toronto and I got the opportunity to play in a top-four group in Pittsburgh.”

In 397 games in a Penguins uniform, Carlyle produced 323 points (66+257). He became the only Penguins player to win the Norris Trophy as the NHL’s top defenseman when he claimed the award in 1981. He delivered the best statistical output of his career that season when he totaled 83 points (16+67) and 136 penalty minutes in 76 games.

“Pittsburgh is a great city. I have a child who was born there and I still have some close friends who reside there,” Carlyle said. “When I was there, we were trying to forge hockey into that community. It was great to see them have success with the Mario Lemieux Era and now they have the Sidney Crosby Era. Those fans deserve that.”

Randy Carlyle captained the Penguins and won a Norris Trophy in Pittsburgh.

Carlyle never had a chance to skate with Lemieux in Pittsburgh as he was traded to Winnipeg late in the 1983-84 season. He played nine more productive NHL seasons and finished his career with 647 points (148+499) in 1,055 games.

Read the rest here - Link

The Pittsburgh Penguins official site also had a nice article on Parros and an interview as well

Interview - Link

This summer, the Stanley Cup took up residence in California.

Yet, the legendary trophy still came to the Pittsburgh area.

Anaheim Ducks winger George Parros brought the Stanley Cup back “home” on Aug. 24 to Scenery Hill in Washington County. That’s where the 6-foot-5, 215-pound winger was born and spent the first three years of his life.

George Parros won the Stanley Cup with the Ducks last season

“I have a lot of family and friends down in Scenery Hill, which is right outside of Washington,” he said. “My uncle’s dairy farm is there and we have a ton of extended family there. My dad grew up here as well as his entire side of the family, too. We always went back and spent summers on the farm and stuff like that. So, I am no stranger to the area and we like it a lot.”

So, a huge throng of family and friends turned out at Chuck Wonsettler’s farm for a celebratory pig roast with the Stanley Cup.

“Yeah it was great. We had everybody out – it was really a good chance to get the whole family together for a big family reunion,” Parros said. “It was just a great time to have everyone there and have a little celebration and a reason to celebrate.”

Following his birth and short stay at Scenery Hill, Parros moved to Columbus, Ohio, and eventually settled in New Jersey. He attended Princeton University and had a solid four-year career with the Tigers’ hockey team.

Read the rest here - Link

Win a Honda Accord from the Ducks  and Honda -  Link