Welcome back to Hockey Season, Anaheim Calling!
As we jump into the season a day behind multiple teams, it looks like Anaheim could already use a little break. Reports have shown that multiple players are on the IR this morning with the official release of opening night rosters.
Looks like Patrick Eaves (lower body) and Ryan Miller (upper body) start season on injured reserve. They join Kesler, Lindholm, Vatanen.— Eric Stephens (@icemancometh) October 4, 2017
Patrick Eaves: Looks to open the season on the IR. Reports from early in the pre-season indicate a lower body injury and is NOT related to the injury of last year. This does come as a little surprise because Giovanni Fiore was sent down. As we discussed the other day, him not making the club came as a bit of a surprise. Eaves seems doubtful to start opening night as of this moment.
Per Orange County Register:
Eaves - “Really frustrating and not trying to focus on that. Just do little things to get better every day.
Ryan Miller: Looks like Ryan “Yoga” Miller may be sidelined in the first game of the season due to an upper body injury. Miller injured himself during the Arizona preseason game. Look for Reto Berra to back up Gibson if he can’t make opening night. I don’t expect Miller to miss a lot of time. He looks more probable to play backup Thursday night.
Ryan Miller (upper body) went through an extensive on-ice workout before practice. GM Bob Murray had convo with him afterward.— Eric Stephens (@icemancometh) October 3, 2017
Ryan Getzlaf: Now I am only mentioning Ryan here because he does still have a lower body injury and will be questionable to start Thursday. Knowing the captain, I 100% believe that he will be starting tomorrow night barring anything major to rehab.
RC said Ryan Getzlaf (lower body) skated before practice. Hopeful he and Miller will join team tomorrow. Avail for opener may hinge on that.— Eric Stephens (@icemancometh) October 3, 2017
On a positive note, it sounds like Hampus Lindholm and Sami Vatanen are progessing at a faster pace than expected. I think the return of these two will be dependent on where the team is in the standings. My hope is that the Ducks give them the time to come back at their own pace and not rush their bodies.
Rickard Rakell: Randy Carlyle told Elliotte Friedman of Sportsnet that he looks at Rakell as a center. I believe that most of us saw a 33 goal scorer as a winger and that he could only be seen as one from here on out. However, expect to see Rakell start at center as we wait for Ryan Kesler to come back from off season surgery that will have him sidelined till no earlier than Christmas, per Bob Murray.
Brandon Montour: Expect the young defenseman to receive a larger roll on the blueline with injuries to the core of the Anaheim defense. There was some concern over the way that Montour and Francois Beauchemin were paired in the preseason.
It’s a bit of a surprise that Daniel Winnik has yet to sign with the Minnesota Wild after his PTO. I haven’t seen any digression in his game, he is a solid 3rd/4th liner with good reliability. With the injuries down the middle and with Kesler and a weak 3rd line center position, I expect to see Rakell go back to wing once Ryan Kesler is back from injury.