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And then there were four: Ducks eliminated

May 16, 2014, 11:54 PM EDT

Los Angeles Kings v Anaheim Ducks - Game Seven Getty Images

The Anaheim Ducks came out on top of the highly competitive Pacific Division, placing themselves atop the Western Conference standings heading into the 2014 Stanley Cup playoffs.

After moving past the Dallas Stars in the opening round, the Ducks lost to their rivals, the L.A. Kings, in the second round, despite two chances to close out the series.

Hockey’s version of the Freeway Series went the distance – seven games – but the Ducks couldn’t capitalize on their opportunities in a Game 6 loss and then fell apart in the concluding game of the series.

Now, a summer of change is ahead for the Ducks, with the expected retirement of popular 43-year-old Teemu Selanne, and goalie Jonas Hiller a pending unrestricted free agent this summer.

  • The future of the Ducks as it pertains to goaltending looks strong, despite the struggles of John Gibson in Game 7 against L.A. Can’t pin the loss all on the 20-year-old rookie. His team didn’t match the same jump that L.A. had right from the drop of the puck. But give Gibson credit for this: He entered the series right in the heat of it – Game 4. He recorded a shutout, which is what he did in his NHL debut on April 7. All the Ducks need is to look to the Kings and Jonathan Quick to see the importance of a star goaltender, and Anaheim appears to have one in the making in Gibson. It also looks more and more like Hiller is on his way out of Anaheim.
  • For the first time in his NHL career, Ducks’ captain Ryan Getzlaf hit the 30-goal mark in a regular season. In fact, Anaheim had two of the top five point leaders in the NHL this season, with Corey Perry scoring 43 goals and 82 points. Both are locked into eight-year deals, with Getzlaf at a cap hit of $8.25 million and Perry $8.625 million, as per Capgeek.com.
  • Up front, the Ducks have a trio of restricted free agents in Mathieu Perreault, Jakob Silfverberg and Devante Smith-Pelly. The latter in that list enjoyed a breakout post-season, spending time on the top line with Perry and Getzlaf. Perreault had a career year in points, and Silfverberg also achieved a new career-high in points with 23.
  • Teemu Selanne has had a long and distinguished career. He’s been on the farewell tour around the league this season. In 1,451 regular season games, he’s scored 684 goals and 1,457 points. And, of course, he had the remarkable 76-goal rookie campaign for the Winnipeg Jets back 1992-93. Yeah, way back when. But he’s also been well-known throughout his time for handling himself with class.

For more entries in this series, click here

  1. elmerbrownelmerbrown - May 17, 2014 at 12:11 AM

    INTRO XX

  2. blomfeld - May 17, 2014 at 12:16 AM

    DON’T EVER LET A DUCK (SHARK) SEE YOUR CAR BREAK DOWN !

    *** this message is for fans of the reigning SC Champion LA Kings only ***

    Like you friends no doubt, tonight my ‘cup runneth over’ tonight with emotions of victory and joy ! … we sure ‘fixed’ them Quacks he ? … and we did it ‘big’ time man ! :) :) :)

    GO KINGS GO !!! … TODAY, TOMORROW AND FOREVER !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    ps to Tucker & crew: you gonna ‘help us’ now in going forward, y’all hear ?

    • joey4id - May 17, 2014 at 7:17 AM

      blomfeld, two of the most knowledgeable hockey commenters on PHT, valoisvipers & yours truly never doubted the Kings would win. Now repeat after me; “I shall never doubt Joey’s or valoisvipers’ words again. Amen!” ;-)

      Enjoy the CF and I wish you a Montreal vs LA SCF. Wouldn’t that be something for you. Eh!

      PS beware of a certain imnotyourbuddyguy commenter on here. He’s a despicable one indeed.

      Cheers

      Go Kings! Go Habs!

    • joey4id - May 17, 2014 at 8:22 AM

      And here is the forensic evidence.

      joey4id | May 1, 2014, 12:07 PM EDT
      Kings – goaltending and grinding play will make the difference

      valoisvipers | May 1, 2014 at 12:37 PM
      Kings – Quick,Quick and Quick.Need I say more. I will, L.A’s depth and experience.

      Go Kings! Go Habs!

      • blomfeld - May 17, 2014 at 11:17 AM

        Judge: Counsel for the Truth, do you not concur with Joey’s analysis ?

        Blomfeld: I do indeed your honor …

        Judge: Very well then, the court deems Joey to be the smartest commenter ‘by far’ at PHT !

        Gallery: Hurray !! .. Hurray !! .. Hurray !! :) :) :)

        ____________________________________

        PHT’s Most Intelligent Commenters as per The Wall Street Journal

        1) Joey
        2) Valoisvipers
        3) Muckleflugga
        4) Slysipops
        5) Comrade Blomfeld

        967) Plankton
        968) Chinese Pine Beetle
        969) President Charles Logan
        970) Canucks30

      • joey4id - May 18, 2014 at 7:13 AM

        :-)

      • canucks30 - May 17, 2014 at 2:41 PM

        No love for your other alter egos patthehockeyfan, aldog83, thehighcountrybear, and thailer35?

  3. 1harrypairatesties - May 17, 2014 at 12:49 AM

    Blackhawks will beat Kings.

    • pudgalvin - May 17, 2014 at 7:56 AM

      The Hawks need to pounce in the first 2 games in Chicago if they’re going to win. I think it’s another break for the Hawks with the Kings traveling to Chicago and playing on short rest after another game 7. But if they drop either of those games, I think the Hawks will be in trouble.

  4. canucks30 - May 17, 2014 at 1:54 AM

    The 2013 and 2013-14 Ducks coached by Bruce Boudreau remind me of the 2008-09 and 2009-10 Washington Capitals coached by Bruce Boudreau.

    High powered offensive juggernauts that dominated teams in the regular season only to lose a Game 7 on home ice each time to a lower seed early in the playoffs.

    It’s happened 4 times to Boudreau now and you have to begin to wonder if his teams play a style of hockey that can be successful in the playoffs.

    • bruceboudreauchokejob - May 17, 2014 at 2:05 AM

      Yup, like I said, I like the guy, he just can’t seem to win the big game

  5. prd797 - May 17, 2014 at 4:08 AM

    Round 2 is over and a Boudreau-coached team is booking tee times? Wow, shocker…

  6. 16thearlofderby - May 17, 2014 at 9:01 AM

    fairness towards bb inexperience hurt the aquatic birds too

    perry no goal on PS is fair he played with broken stick on breakaway

  7. penvik - May 17, 2014 at 9:10 AM

    Is this any surprise. Without the rule book, LA almost impossible to play. Chicago better get the stick work ready, clutch and grab vs. Hack and slash. At least those teams have won cups recently, which should be an indicator if you should be around still or not. Oh look! The ECF is a joke! So Montreal and NYR, beginning of dynasties??

  8. sprtsfan1 - May 17, 2014 at 12:00 PM

    Call me out because I’m a Blackhawks fan but I still just can’t see a team being able to beat the Hawks 4 times in 7 games. Even with the Hawks not being at their best they win in the playoffs. One thing I can’t stand is that they don’t really play until they absolutely have to. That’s the only thing I see biting them in this or any series. However, I see a third Stanley Cup in 5 years in the Hawks future. Go Hawks!!!

  9. paulerhythm - May 17, 2014 at 2:38 PM

    Anticlimactic finish to a great series, I might say. However, play ing 2 7 game series will haunt the Kings, just saying.

  10. capsrockva - May 18, 2014 at 7:42 PM

    I don’t want to see another NY parade

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