LA Times report on Coach Carlyle's coaching style
The use of interchangeable players is commonplace in the NHL, but in the Ducks' case, the beauty is how well players adjust on the fly.The Star Tribune has a look at the Ducks vs Wild rivalry
That was the case Wednesday in Anaheim's home opener, a 2-1 victory over Boston.
With the score tied, 1-1, after two periods, Coach Randy Carlyle juggled his lineup and rotated veterans Brad May and Todd Marchant on a line with Ryan Getzlaf and Corey Perry.
"We're not afraid of moving people. . . Sometimes it is an individual not working, sometimes it is a group of them not working, sometimes, it's just not working," Carlyle said.
"You have to be able to read those situations as a coaching staff and you have to go with your gut feeling in who will give you your best opportunity to have success."
Last season, Carlyle's hunches were right on the money as the Ducks rolled through the playoffs to a Stanley Cup title, even though some observers said it was easy to make lineup moves because of the one-two punch of defensemen Scott Niedermayer and Chris Pronger.
But Niedermayer is not with the Ducks and Carlyle showed Wednesday he still has the touch.
"I would definitely say it's an advantage for us," said May, who played only 7 minutes 45 seconds Wednesday but was on the ice for key minutes early in the third period. "We all recognize that there's always a chance that it's coming."
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If you plan to tune in and watch the Wild's first visit to the Honda Center since the Anaheim Ducks hastily eliminated Minnesota in last season's first round of the playoffs, here's one thing you shouldn't expect tonight: Kim Johnsson fighting Brad May.
"That would be utterly stupid of me," the Wild defenseman said.
In fact, May -- a k a Public Enemy No. 1 for knocking Johnsson out with a shocking sucker punch at the end of Game 4 last April -- probably won't be accepting any invitations from Derek Boogaard either.
"I doubt it," Boogaard said. "He doesn't fight guys like me, and the main thing is the game. You've got to worry about that first."
While that type of attitude might not get the blood flowing in all those revenge-seekers out there, the reality is that beating up Brad May wouldn't take the Ducks' Stanley Cup away.
"Anaheim is the measuring stick of the league right now and obviously there's a little bit of history, but I don't think it's going to get out of hand," Wild veteran forward Mark Parrish said. "I'm sure it'll be a very physical game, but I wouldn't expect four or five different fights and a total bloodbath.
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