Let’s start by addressing the team that eliminated the Ducks for the second year in a row. Nashville- thank you for eliminating the Blackhawks, everyone enjoyed that. You play hard and simply show that you can outwork anyone. Good luck against the Burgh, you will need it. You have exemplified why the NBA is horrible and why the NHL playoffs are drama filled with truly unpredictable results. I applaud your tenacity, perseverance, and of course, your raucous arena.
I also applaud your tendy. Pekka Rinne is filthy. Remember not too long ago when some were saying his best days were behind him? Well now look. He ruined the Hawks, Blues, and Ducks, earning himself a date with the Stanley Cup Final. Game 6 was all Anaheim as the Ducks put a whopping 41 shots on net to the Preds 18. Yes there were some other factors into why the Ducks lost (you know exactly who we’re talking about), but Rinne showed he is the backbone to this unprecedented cup run.
Here is where I shall even defend your team. Can people stop bashing P.K. Subban please? He was run out of town in Montreal and critics are still harping on him and his enthusiastic attitude. The man is a great hockey player and brings a little flare to the game, the whole “hockey culture” thing in Canada needs to get over itself. It is a team sport, but players can celly hard. If Connor McDavid was shooting arrows after he scored, the Canadian media would love it. Why do you think the NFL just changed its rules on touchdown celebrations? People love the emotion! If the NHL wants to grow in the U.S. then let players like P.K. have fun.
Now to the bashing.
Even though you may have the loudest fans in the league, I don’t know if I can say you have the brightest fans around.
At least you can sneak in dead ducks and catfish.
Now to the players.
Filip Forsberg is a diver. He’s a grown man who is capable of staying on his feet. A specific moment that frustrates any Ducks fan is when he blatantly high sticked Manson to where Josh was spitting blood afterwards. Of course Manson was called right after for a cross check as Forsberg went down faster than the Avs season. If you want to fall over at the brush of a body, then go to Europe and play soccer.
Ryan Johansen is a girl scout. You don’t have to like what Kesler does but it is a part of the game. To go out of your way to complain to the media only makes you look weak. He even attacked his family for cheering him on. You never heard McDavid crying about Kesler. Johansen should just be quiet next time. However, I do wish him the best in is recovery. But come on Johansen, it’s hockey. Quit whining.
As for our Ducks, they showed the hockey world that their Stanley Cup window is not yet over. This year they outperformed everyones expectations, including my own. The regular season was mediocre, including a stretch of 12 games where they’d win then lose, win, then lose, you get it. Until the end of the year. An incredible run took place as the Ducks went into the second round of the playoffs without losing a game in regulation since March 10th.
The kids sure stepped up this season. Even just in game 6, Kase was showing off his skill. The kid is going to be good. The defense is also young and talented, only if we could remove Kevin Bieksa from the roster. Then there’s young Rak City. Rickard Rakell had a breakout season which was much needed as Perry fell off the face of the earth. To be fair, Pears was clutch in the playoffs. I predict a 40 goal season next year for 67.
Ryan Getzlaf put on a clinic this season. The man looked a decade younger and lead this team. The other Ryan had some concerns. It was unfortunate that Kesler could not tickle the twine in these playoffs. He’s a player who fights and works hard and I admire that. But the Ducks are going to need more offensive production from him. It’d be preferable if Bob could ship out a blue liner for the likes of a Jonathan Drouin to help out that top 6.
Overall, the season was a success. It hurt in the end, as does any year when Lord Stanley isn’t held over your captains head. Even though game 6 should have been won, the Ducks were still in the WCF for the second time in three years. They brought us one of the greatest comebacks in NHL history. There is now a game 7 at the Pond we can fondly think of. On top of all that, with a young defense, a healthy Gibby, and a good mix of veterans with kids up front, the Ducks will have another shot at it all next season.
Let’s Go Ducks.