Anaheim Ducks

Goalie nods: Gibson goes for Ducks, whose playoff starter is still uncertain

John Gibson will get another chance to show he should be the Anaheim Ducks’ playoff starter when he goes up against Colorado tonight at Honda Center.

Gibson’s last start was a good one; the 21-year-old stopped all but one of the Devils’ 27 shots last Sunday in a 2-1 victory, after which he was named the game’s first star.

Still, neither Gibson nor Andersen has made it an easy decision for coach Bruce Boudreau. Both young goalies have had excellent performances, and both have had their hiccups.

“I think they both want the starting role,” Boudreau said recently, per NHL.com “We had a tough game in New York and Columbus [last month] and when [Andersen] played two really good games, it was like [Gibson] said, ‘Oh, yeah? OK,’ and he came in and played great. I think they both would like to have it.

“If we go far they’re both going to play, and if we don’t go far, they’re both going to play, because if we’re losing, we’re going to make switches. That’s the way I think of it right now. We’re not married to thinking one is better than the other. When they’re on top of their game, they’re as good as there is.”

Reto Berra will start for Colorado.

Elsewhere…

Scott Darling likely for Chicago versus Anders Lindback for Buffalo.

Dustin Tokarski for Montreal versus Keith Kinkaid for New Jersey.

Brian Elliott for St. Louis versus Kari Lehtonen (likely) for Dallas.

Louis Domingue for Arizona versus Antti Niemi for San Jose.

 

Ducks recall ’11 first-rounder Noesen, acquired in Bobby Ryan trade

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After an incredibly unlucky run of injuries, Stefan Noesen could soon make his NHL debut.

Noesen, taken 21st overall at the 2011 NHL Entry Draft, has been recalled to Anaheim from AHL Norfolk, the club announced on Friday. The 22-year-old came to the Ducks from Ottawa in the Bobby Ryan trade of ’13… and has suffered through two major injuries and rehabs since.

Just a few games into the 2013-14 campaign, Noesen ripped up his knee — tearing both his ACL and MCL — which shelved him for all of the regular season and part of Norfolk’s playoff run. While he did return to get some postseason action, Noesen was again sidelined at the start of this season when he suffered a severed Achilles following a skate cut in mid-October.

Noesen only returned to the Norfolk lineup in mid-February, but made an immediate impact. He’s scored 10 points in 19 games since coming back and could provide a boost for the Ducks heading into the playoffs; Noesen has good size (6-foot-2, 205 pounds) and his playing style has earned comparisons to his new teammate, Corey Perry — from a fairly legit source in Ottawa GM Bryan Murray, who drafted Perry to the Ducks and Noesen to the Sens.

PHT Morning Skate: Ovechkin says if he could choose another place to play, it’d be Montreal

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PHT’s Morning Skate takes a look around the world of hockey to see what’s happening and what we’ll be talking about around the NHL world and beyond.

Alex Ovechkin says if he wasn’t playing for the Washington Capitals, his preferred team would be the Montreal Canadiens. Ovechkin said he likes the atmosphere and culture in the city of Montreal. (ESPN.com)

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Anaheim Ducks players read harsh tweets:

Former Montreal Expo Vladimir Guerrero got a warm reception during the Montreal Canadiens game on Thursday night.

Actor and Boston Bruins’ fan Denis Leary is producing an eight-episode sitcom called “Benders”, which focuses on an amateur hockey team. (A.V. Club)

Matt Dumba recently ventured into Minnesota’s Mall of America to talk hockey with shoppers. The Wild’s rookie defenseman went predominantly unrecognized as he talked to shoppers about the local hockey team.

A linesman in the KHL suffered a brutal leg injury after a player was hit into his leg. The injury occurred during Ak Bars 1-0 overtime win against Sibir in KHL playoff action on Thursday.

Ducks clinch Pacific Division title

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It’s official now.

The Anaheim Ducks will go into the Stanley Cup playoffs as the Pacific Division champs for a third consecutive year. The Ducks secured the title with a dominant 5-1 victory over the Edmonton Oilers on Wednesday.

Next on their list of accomplishments would be the Presidents’ Trophy as the league’s top team during the regular season. With 107 points, they lead that race with three games remaining on their schedule.

The Ducks jumped out to a 4-0 lead, and secured the win with a penalty shot goal from Andrew Cogliano early in the third period. Corey Perry scored his 33rd goal of the season in the win, recording his 600th career point.

Ryan Kesler was scratched from the Ducks lineup.

From NHL.com:

The move was expected because Kesler is healing from what is believed to be an arm injury. He participated in the morning skate but Ducks coach Bruce Boudreau wouldn’t say if Kesler would play against the Oilers at Honda Center.

Goalie nods: Stalock starts third straight for Sharks

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All the latest from the blue paint…

San Jose looking forward?

All but mathematically eliminated from the playoffs, San Jose will sit veteran — and soon-to-be UFA — Antti Neimi for the third straight game tonight, and once again start Alex Stalock in goal when it takes on the Avs.

Stalock, who’s started three straight only one other time this year, inherited the net after Niemi fell ill two games ago and has performed reasonably well, helping the Sharks gain three of a possible four points by stopping 47 of his last 51 shots faced.

It’ll be interesting to see how much the Sharks play the 27-year-old over their final six games of the regular season. Stalock is under contract for next year and while there are doubt he can be a full-time starter in the NHL, he will (presumably) be with the organization in 2015-16 whereas it’s unlikely Niemi will be back.

For Colorado, Reto Berra gets the nod.

Elsewhere…

Leafs at Sabres: Jonathan Bernier vs. Anders Lindback

Flyers at Pens: Steve Mason vs. Marc-Andre Fleury

Oilers at Ducks: Ben Scrivens vs. Frederik Andersen