Tag: Cam Fowler

Video: Ducks show ‘resiliency’ with Game 3 victory


The Anaheim Ducks now find themselves in a position to put the Chicago Blackhawks on the ropes. Thanks to a Game 3 victory in Chicago on Thursday, the Ducks now lead the Western Conference Final 2-1 after bouncing back from a triple overtime loss on Tuesday.

Anaheim successfully killed off five Chicago power plays, including a four-minute advantage in the first period. Frederik Andersen made 27 saves. And the Ducks got the winning goal from Simon Despres, who had never scored before in the post-season.

Afterward, defenseman Cam Fowler lauded the Ducks’ “resiliency” in the win.

Ducks head coach Bruce Boudreau told reporters during his post-game press conference that this was a “character win.”

Meanwhile, the Ducks are feeling great about their defensive depth


Enough has already been written on the Blackhawks’ defense. And with Kyle Cumiskey looking like he could step in for David Rundblad for tomorrow’s Game 2 of the Western Conference Final, more will be written still.

But this post is about Anaheim’s defense. Unlike Chicago’s, it’s looking pretty darn deep.

It’s so deep, in fact, that veteran James Wisniewski can’t get into the lineup.

“We thought we got all these guys and [Simon Despres] would be the seventh D,” Ducks coach Bruce Boudreau said today. “Now it would be pretty hard arguably to take him out. [GM Bob Murray] did a tremendous job acquiring him.

“I think [assistant coach Trent Yawney has] done a tremendous job as far as handling all six defensemen. I think with their minutes, with their responsibilities, now there’s not a fear of putting any one of them into any situation that comes to the front.”

Deep and talented as the Ducks defense may be, it does not have a Norris Trophy candidate, like Chicago does with Duncan Keith. That’s notable if only because most (not all, but the large majority of) Stanley Cup champions do have that kind of defenseman. Los Angeles had Drew Doughty, Boston had Zdeno Chara, Detroit had Nicklas Lidstrom, etc.

To be sure, the Ducks may one day soon have a Norris Trophy candidate. Hampus Lindholm and Cam Fowler each have the potential. But both are still very young, at 21 and 23 years old, respectively.

Hence, the importance of veteran Francois Beauchemin.

“He’s the voice,” Boudreau said of the 34-year-old. “Everybody else is so young. [He] is the voice back there. You can hear him talking all the time.

“The other one that’s helping, but not playing, is Wiz. He’s helping the defensemen out there. Obviously he wants to play, but he’s been so professional about all of this. He’ll take [Sami Vatanen] aside, he’ll take the young guys aside and say, ‘This is what Chicago is doing, this is this, this is that.’ Those two older guys are great teachers and the guys look up to them an awful lot.”

Related: Coach Q denies Chicago’s depth issues, but Kesler suggests otherwise

Ducks have embraced hard practices as long layoff nears end

Cam Fowler
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Thirteen. That’s the number of games the Anaheim Ducks have participated in since the start of April. In other words, they’ve had an off day nearly three-quarters of the time over that span.

That light schedule, brought on primarily thanks to their quick work of Winnipeg and Calgary, has been great for recovering from the wear and tear of the campaign and postseason, but it’s also hard to stay sharp when you’re not actually playing. Avoiding rust can be a challenge, but its one defenseman Cam Fowler feels they’ve met through intense practices.

“The big reason why we’ve had success is because how we’ve been practicing has carried over into the games,” Fowler said, per the team’s website. “That’s really important, especially when you have six or seven days off. It might be easy to sit back and relax for a second, but the good thing about our group is we continue to push each other in practice.”

Ducks coach Bruce Boudreau has noticed that too and praised the team’s determination, even compared to what Anaheim showed him in previous years.

“We’ve practiced a lot, and they’ve been hard practices, but these guys haven’t complained about it,” Boudreau said. “They’ve embraced the practices.”

It has to help that the Ducks are seeing results for their efforts. For the first time since 2007, Anaheim is in the Western Conference Final. The Chicago Blackhawks will likely prove to be more difficult than the Ducks’ previous opponents, but if Anaheim plays like it did in the first two rounds then this should be a good series.


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