Tag: Mark Fistric

Chicago Blackhawks v Philadelphia Flyers

More minutes? Timonen will ‘take whatever I get’ after Rozsival injury


Though he’s largely been a non-factor for Chicago this postseason — averaging just 9:25 TOI per night — Kimmo Timonen says he’s more than ready for an increased workload now that Michal Rozsival is done for the playoffs with a fractured ankle.

“If I get more, I get more. If I don’t, I don’t,” Timonen said, per the Sun-Times. “That’s my role and I’m happy to do it. If it’s seven, eight, 12 minutes — that’s more than I was supposed to play this year anyway.

“I’ll take whatever I get.”

Expect defense to be a major story in the Western Conference Final — specifically, the contrasts between Anaheim and Chicago. The Ducks are feeling great about the health and depth; they’re young, they’re fresh, Hampus Lindholm is emerging as a potential star and, should injury hit, the club is more than capable of dealing — trade deadline pickups James Wisniewski and Korbinian Holzer are sitting as healthy scratches, as are veteran Mark Fistric and youngster Josh Manson.

It’s a far different story in Chicago.

Head coach Joel Quenneville has relied heavily on his top four of Duncan Keith, Brent Seabrook, Johnny Oduya and Niklas Hjalmarsson. Rozsival was often scrutinized by fans and media, but played an integral role as the No. 5 guy and will now likely be replaced by David Rundblad. The 24-year-old Swede did play a fair bit during the regular season but, as Brough pointed out, received protected minutes and started just 20.6 percent of his shifts in the defensive zone.

Which brings the conversation back to Timonen.

There’s an obvious opportunity here for him to see more ice, given almost all of Rozsival’s minutes were at even strength. The 40-year-old insists he’s feeling great and fit enough to be a factor in the Anaheim series, which might be a necessity given how effectively the Ducks rolled their forwards through the first two playoff rounds.

“I’m probably in the past shape I’ve been in years. I feel great,” Timonen said. “Once I get out there I do my job as well as I can. But it hasn’t been easy. It’s a role I’ve never been through before. It takes a little time to get used to it. It’s a lot of mental thinking.

“Every player wants to play more. When you play more you usually play better.”

Related: Rozsival injury puts Chicago blue line that much more under the microscope

Trade: Ducks acquire Robak from Florida for Blacker

New Jersey Devils v Florida Panthers
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The Florida Panthers and Anaheim Ducks partnered for a flip of young defensemen on Thursday, with the Panthers sending Colby Robak out West in exchange for Jesse Blacker and a conditional draft pick.

Robak, 24, is the more vested of the two, having played in 42 career NHL contests (all coming with Florida). He’s appeared in seven games for the Cats this season, scoring no points while recording two PIM.

Blacker, 23, made his NHL debut with the Ducks this year and, to date, it remains his first and only big-league game. Like Robak, Blacker is a former second-round pick (Robak was taken 46th overall in ’08, Blacker 58th in ’09); he was originally selected by Toronto, but moved to Anaheim last year as part of the Peter Holland trade.

On the surface, the move seems to address Anaheim’s need for a NHL-ready defenseman. Francois Beauchemin, Mark Fistric, Ben Lovejoy and the recently-acquired Eric Brewer are all shelved with injuries and, as such, the Ducks were rolling with a thinned out defense against Philly last night, featuring Clayton Stoner, Cam Fowler, Mat Clark, Josh Manson, Sami Vatanen and Hampus Lindholm.

Ducks lose newly acquired Brewer (broken foot) for 4-6 weeks

Boston Bruins v Anaheim Ducks

After just two games as a Duck, Eric Brewer is on the shelf.

On Tuesday, the O.C. Register reported Brewer would miss the next 4-6 weeks after breaking his foot during Monday’s win over Boston.

The 34-year-old rearguard, acquired from Tampa Bay last Friday, made his Anaheim debut over the weekend in a 6-4 loss to San Jose, then played a season-high 21:15 against the Bruins.

The loss is a big one. GM Bob Murray got Brewer because his defense was decimated by injury: Clayton Stoner (mumps, possible to return tonight vs. Philly), Francois Beauchemin (upper body), Ben Lovejoy (broken finger) and Mark Fistric (back) are all currently sidelined.

Without Brewer, the Ducks will roll with a defense comprised of Cam Fowler, Hampus Lindholm, Sami Vatanen, Josh Manson, Mat Clark and, depending if he can go tonight or not, Stoner.

In other Ducks news, goalie Jason LaBarbera’s upper-body injury turned out to be a broken hand. He’ll be out 2-3 weeks and, in a corresponding move, the team brought in Ilya Bryzgalov on a tryout.