The Best Season Recap There Is

ARTHUR:
There's a terrible film called Paycheck. It, like most of John Woo's American films, is a lesser Woo work featuring a marketable American actor, in this case Ben Affleck. In the film, the protagonist is a mercenary reverse engineer, who hires himself out to duplicate cutting edge technology, then promises he will wipe his memory in order to prevent him from using what he learned while working for his temporary employer.

There's a scene in the film, presumably written in at Ben Affleck's request, where the protagonist returns to his apartment-- dusty, the furniture still draped in cloth from its owner's prolonged absence while living in a laboratory --with a stack of pizzas and a series of tapes covering every game in the preceding Boston Red Sox season. He proceeds to watch the entire season . . . and finish the pizzas, I guess.

In terms of re-living a season, this is the only option for the true sports fan. While there is something to be said for the anticipation and thoughtful discussion between games (the fuel that drives the sports news channels and the blogosphere), the idea of sitting and watching an entire season back to back is appealing to most sports junkies. Get me a couple dozen pot pies and a vacation from work, and I guarantee you I can go the whole 82.

For the Ducks, I'm sure such a marathon exists somewhere, on some hard drive transferred from someone's DVR, or at least in the annals of the NHL film room. For the rest of us, there's the interesting option of the 2010-11 NHL Games of The Year on iTunes. NINE of the 70 games available on iTunes are Ducks games; Anaheim even won a few of them.

As a caveat, I'm not shamelessly shilling for iTunes or NHL Films. I did grow up in the era of Home Video, but I also remember the preceding era, when the copyright license fee attached to Home Video cassettes was astronomical, because, well, the assumption that you have to 'own' everything you like is relatively new.

So, I'm not suggesting you buy all of these. I'm not suggesting there would be any value to doing that whatsoever. However, if you're looking for a retrospective on this season, something to refresh your memory, then entire games are much better than highlight clips or a trip down YouTube's memory lane.

Game #13
November 9, 2010
Ducks 3 @ Sharks 2 (OT)
The Ducks were finally rolling, but so were the Sharks. San Jose put 41 shots on Jonas Hiller, 23 in the third period and overtime alone, but the boys in teal found out quickly that the shields were quite operational, as Darth Hiller put the Force Choke on his former 2009 playoff victims.

Game #15
November 14, 2010
Ducks 2 @ Hawks 3 (OT)
Anaheim was going for seven straight wins, but the Blackhawks power play gained Chicago the lead twice. Corey Perry guaranteed overtime, but the Ducks just couldn't close out the Hawks. Oh, Hiller saw 43 shots, in case you were wondering.

Game #21
November 27, 2010
Ducks 6 @ Coyotes 4
A Bobby Ryan hat trick pulled the Ducks out of a six-game losing streak, and Anaheim erased a 3-1 lead with five straight goals.

Game #25
December 7, 2010
Ducks 3 @ Oilers 2 (SO)
The Ducks blew a two goal lead, and it took ten rounds of shootout to call Cam Fowler's number, but the rookie answered the bell. Ding. Ding.

Game #26
December 8, 2010
Ducks 4 @ Canucks 5 (SO)
Another two goal lead blown, and another round of shootouts, but this time the opposition skated off in celebration. Curtis McElhinney sustained a pressure cut from a blast to the forehead, and there were those (cough, Carlyle, cough) who blamed the loss on a lack of referee intervention at that point of the game.

Game #41
January 22, 2011
Ducks 4 @ Canadiens 3 (SO)
In his return to the Bell Centre, Saku Koivu was greeted with three penalties, two of which were converted into goals by the Canadiens. Bobby Ryan scored in the shootout to keep the homecoming happy for the former Montreal captain.

Game #50
February 16, 2011
Capitals 7 @ Ducks 6
Through 13 goals, the lead changed hands four times in a true barn burner, and it's first game at the Pond to make the iTunes list.

Game #62
March 19, 2011
Ducks 2 @ Kings 1 (OT)
Corey Perry scored his first overtime goal. And hey, Mikey, did he like it.

Game #65
March 28, 2011
Avalanche 4 @ Ducks 5
Selanne hat trick at the Pond. Cherry on top, if there ever was one.

So, there it is. If you're looking to re-live the drama that was this Ducks season, a season that openly played with the fans' emotions, right down to a one-week stretch where Anaheim left you wondering if they'd make the playoffs, only to claim 4th place in the race, then check out the 2010-11 Games of The Year.

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