Steckel released from Wild’s AHL affiliate, signs with banged-up Ducks

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David Steckel is taking a familiar route in his quest back to the NHL.

The veteran forward, who signed a PTO with Minnesota for training camp, was released from his contract with AHL Iowa and has reportedly inked a minor-league deal with Anaheim, according to Mike Russo of the Minnesota Star-Tribune.

The move back to Orange County would make sense on a number of fronts.

One, Steckel has experience with the Ducks and head coach Bruce Boudreau, having played for Anaheim last season (prior to that, he spent five years in Washington under Boudreau.)

Two, the Ducks are all kinds of banged up at the forward position.

Saku Koivu was knocked out of Sunday’s game against Columbus and has been sent back to California for evaluation, putting him on the shelf alongside Jakob Silfverbeg (broken hand), Mathieu Perreault (sprained wrist), Dustin Penner (concussion) and Matt Beleskey (on IR, upper body).

A faceoff specialist with size (6-foot-6), Steckel should have a good crack of making the roster. He put up six points in 21 regular season games for the Ducks last year, and two points in seven playoff appearances.