Bobby Ryan

Bobby Ryan on his future: “My next step ultimately would be to break away from Getz and Pears”

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Say this about Bobby Ryan — he isn’t afraid to speak candidly.

In an engaging and wide-open interview with Eric Stephens of the OC Register, the Anaheim winger answered questions about his season, his future and the next step in his career.

Ryan’s answer to the latter was really interesting and gave insight to the Ducks’ pecking order.

“My next step ultimately would be to break away from Getz [Ryan Getzlaf] and Pears [Corey Perry],” Ryan said. “I think we’ve had chemistry. But at some point,  you’re going to have to prepare for life after Teemu [Selanne]. I’d like to fill into that role and have that second line be built. I think I can step into Teemu’s role. I think I can put up 35 to 40 goals year in and year out.

“Personally on the ice, I’d like to be able to break games open a little more. Sometimes when I play with Getz and Pears, I get the feeling like I’ve got to be a secondary guy.”

Now, let’s be clear — this wasn’t Ryan asking out of Anaheim, or to be freed from the shadows of Getzlaf and Perry. But it definitely was about him being the go-to guy on his own line rather than the third option behind the reigning league MVP and a two-time All-Star.

“The opportunities for me to break away from it and try to give us a secondary scoring option on another line, it’s working right now,” Ryan continued. “When those guys [Selanne and Saku Koivu] leave, we have to build a second line. I’d like to do it around myself and be able to make adjustments to my game.”

Again, not a wild or crazy thing to say…but certainly candid. Getzlaf is one of the premier setup men in the business and a big reason why Ryan is on pace for his fourth consecutive 30-goal season. So why is Ryan pushing to get off Getzlaf’s wing?

I suppose this could genuinely be about improving the team. Anaheim’s long thought to be too top-heavy and lacking depth at forward, so in that light Ryan’s initiative to “build a second line” is admirable. But there’s also the fact that, last year, the Perry-Getzlaf-Ryan line carried Anaheim to fourth in the Western Conference and Perry’s Hart Trophy win.

Will the Ducks really want to break that up?

Anaheim GM quells the Bobby Ryan storm

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And just like that, as mysteriously as they arrived, the Bobby Ryan trade rumors were gone.

ESPN’s Pierre LeBrun is reporting Anaheim GM Bob Murray has “quieted things down” on the Ryan trade front. Murray informed both Ryan and inquiring teams he wants to see how the Ducks respond to new head coach Bruce Boudreau before making any (other) significant moves.

So case closed? I guess, even though we’re still left with the mystery of why Ryan was made available in the first place. James Mirtle of the Globe and Mail suggested that “reading between the lines…Ryan and Carlyle weren’t getting along and one had to go,” which is probably as legit a theory as any, even though it’s difficult to find corresponding evidence.

Ryan was third among all Ducks forwards in minutes per game (19:01) and routinely got to play with Ryan Getzlaf and Corey Perry. He’s also enjoyed three 30-goals seasons on Carlyle’s watch (an average 20:11 TOI last year), so it’s not like he was being stifled offensively.

Digging deeper for a conflict…there has always been befuddlement over Ryan’s lack of powerplay opportunities. Carlyle often rode his first unit of Visnovsky-Fowler-Getzlaf-Perry-Selanne, meaning Ryan only got around two minutes of PP time a game. Carlyle also dropped Ryan to the third line with Maxime Macenauer and Niklas Hagman, one of his final moves as head coach.

None of those seem indicative of a major rift between coach and player, though.

We can probably put an end to the Bobby Ryan trade speculation

Bobby Ryan

The rumor mill that was going wild over the possibility that the Ducks would trade Bobby Ryan should now be all but over with.

Look at it this way, with the Ducks having lost 16 of their last 19 now after beating Montreal last night, they were in need of a change one way or another. It was viewed that either Randy Carlyle was going to go or a trade was going to happen to shake the team up. With Carlyle out and nice guy Boudreau in, it’d be wise to give Boudreau all the players that are currently in place to see what he can do with it.

With offensive weapons like Corey Perry, Ryan Getzlaf, Teemu Selanne, and Ryan alike it makes too much sense to see what Boudreau can do with that much talent at his disposal. After all, he seemed to do pretty well in Washington with the guys he had there so why eliminate a 30-goal scorer just for change sake?

Buck up though Rangers fans/Sabres fans/rumor fans, there’ll be other deals to ruminate about in the future you’ll just have to take your eyes off the 24 year-old budding superstar for now.

Cross Flyers off list of teams seeking Bobby Ryan

Bobby Ryan, Jordin Tootoo
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The trade rumors surrounding Bobby Ryan continue to swirl, but CSNPhilly.com’s John Boruk reports that the Philadelphia Flyers aren’t in the running.

Judging by the makeup of this Flyers team, it’s not shocking that they aren’t looking to add Ryan, who grew up near Philly. Then again, there are plenty of reasons why it would make sense to go after Ryan, which shows how crazy it would be for the Anaheim Ducks to move him.

1. Ryan is three-time 30-goal scorer despite being just 24 years old.

2. The Flyers love power forwards and Ryan is a budding one, even if Ryan Getzlaf and Corey Perry are nastier.

3. Ryan sports a more-than-reasonable $5.15 million annual cap hit through the 2014-15 season.

4. Generally speaking, the Flyers love making splashy moves.

Those reasons could make any fan base excited, but the Flyers are reportedly balking at the asking price that might include James van Riemsdyk or Brayden Schenn. (One can imagine that Philly would need to throw another player in there anyway, considering their skimpy cap space.)

In an ideal world, Ryan would stay with the team that drafted him. As he said, it’s ultimately a business though, so we’ll see if the desperate Ducks really pull the trigger.

Today’s insane Bobby Ryan trade rumor involves… Ryan Miller

Ryan Miller,  Bobby Ryan
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With the talk of Bobby Ryan being apparently shopped around by the Ducks, it only makes sense that we’ll get some wild ideas. Yesterday it was the New York Rangers kicking the tires and today’s hot rumor involves the Buffalo Sabres.

Bucky Gleason of The Buffalo News drops a little bit of curious knowledge on us saying that while Ducks GM Bob Murray was in Buffalo the other night scouting the Sabres, Murray has also called the Sabres about a possible Ryan Miller for Bobby Ryan swap. Hey, if you’re going to make a trade, you might as well go big.

While it’s just idle speculation for now, this rumor plays into what the Edmonton Journal’s Jim Matheson mentioned about Miller being OK with being moved. Matheson said that Miller would be all right with going to the west coast because that’s where his wife is trying to also advance her career in southern California.

Of course, Miller’s already shot down the notion that he’d want to be traded, but if there was anything to these rumors, it’d make for a fascinating discussion. After all, Ryan says he wouldn’t be surprised if he’s sent packing. There’s also the fact that Jonas Hiller is already being paid a ton of money to play goal in Anaheim already.

There’s a ton of salary that would be moving around as well and Miller has a bigger contract than Ryan. For the budget-conscience Ducks that’d make for a harder sell. In all likelihood there’s not much going on here other than GMs talking with each other, but the fantasy GM in all of us can’t get enough of the talk.