Doc, it's been a while since I saw you last. My previous issue was resolved without incident - well, unless you're Paul Kariya - but that's not why I'm here. As of Halloween, the Ducks are 4-7-1. Saying that record makes me nauseous. I get that no one expected the team to be any good this year. Naturally, I figured we would be a sleeper.
Seriously, we have three of the best young stars in the game in Ryan Getzlaf, Corey Perry, and Bobby Ryan. I love those three and would probably crumble if one of them were to leave, but c'mon, where is the magic?! Perry and Getz have an instant chemistry. If given a steady stream of games on that top line, Bobby would feel it too. I understand that Carlyle wants to optimize Bobby's size and superior puck handling skills, but why not leave the kid (or anyone) on the top line or the top power play unit for more than one or two ENTIRE games? Instead, BR is moved between the three lines, dropped to the second power unit, and added to the penalty kill.
That last part floored me. Since when has Bobby been a penalty killer? The kid admits that skating backwards is not his strong suit; it's a minor threat to have him play the second minute of a PK. His game is 90% offensive and 10% defensive, and since he's been in the NHL, Carlyle always put him in the box to serve goalie or too many men penalties. Why have him on the ice in the same situation a full minute more fatigued?Actually, I was beginning to like the combination of Selanne - Koivu - Ryan, but like usual, before BR could really feel his rhythm with the Finns, he was moved back up to the top line with Getz and Pears. How can he be expected to play HIS game when he is constantly having to adjust to who he is playing alongside? Gotta hand it to BR, though. With the exception of the debacle of him at center, he's kept his cool when talking to the media and isn't taking backhanded swipes at the coach's decisions. One has to wonder if he's got any regrets in signing that five year deal now...
I don't want to talk about the defense, but you're making me. I'm beginning to feel my asthma acting up. The inner optimist in me was thinking all off season, "we can't be that bad". (Stop laughing Doc, that's really unprofessional). I get that Scott Neidermayer was a huuuuge loss to the team, and Sheldon Brookbank is the longest tenured defenseman on the team, but we added some key d-men. From what I've read, Carlyle's defensive system is one of the easiest in the league. If the pieces are different but the game is the same, how different can it be? The triangle offense worked for Michael Jordan and now it works for Kobe Bryant. (STOP LAUGHING. YOU ARE NOT HELPING). I'm beginning to hyperventilate. Get me a paper bag to either breathe into or barf into.
I've been a fan for SO long. After many craptastic seasons, I was okay with a team that really gave their best every night, even if it was mediocre and resulted in another loss. Once we started winning, I felt that all my years of standing by a team full of misfits was finally beginning to pay off. We won The Cup, and from that season on, I expected nothing less than 1000% from my boys each and every night. Now I feel my world crashing around me. What the hell?! I was the one talking everyone off the cliff three weeks ago. Now I'm there right at the edge. If it weren't for being a devoted bottle blonde, I'm pretty sure I'd have gray hair.
What possibly could make this team better? How about a change on the bench by placing a wax statue of Scotty (in uniform) from Madame Tussauds' on it? His presence should calm everyone down. A healthy Joffrey Lupul (paper bag again, please), Matt Beleskey, and/or Andy Sutton? How about Cam Fowler ceasing the practice of the face-stop on the boards? Or Dan Sexton smartly taking a puck to the grill so he could fit in with the OC and get a nose job? So many questions and so little answers. I'm going to stick by my boys, though. Not like I'd actually cheer for anyone else.
Looks like our time is up. Since I've just started a new job, my benefits won't kick in for 90 days. Is there any way to bill my visit to the Samueli's? They said they wanted a winner on the ice, and I believed them. So far, it hasn't happened.