With Anaheim Ducks’ training camp nearing its completion, we take a look at what the Anaheim Ducks opening day roster may look like in terms of what forward lines, defense pairings, and goaltenders will be deployed at the start of the season.
Like all other 30 NHL teams, the Anaheim Ducks used their preseason as a means of learning about some of the development of their younger players and see who might be ready to make the jump to the NHL. In addition to the established veterans that have been on the roster for numerous years (e.g. Ryan Getzlaf, Andrew Cogliano, Rickard Rakell), the Ducks desperately needed an infusion of youth and speed in their forward corps.
Other factors further complicated matters. Contract negotiations with left winger Nick Ritchie that seem to have reached an impasse with General Manager Bob Murray as well as Corey Perry’s knee surgery to repair a damaged MCL and meniscus in his knee gave the younger Ducks a greater chance of cracking the roster.
Ducks’ winger Patrick Eaves has also been out and yet to take contact in any Ducks’ practice; he has been recovering from a post-viral syndrome. Center Ryan Kesler has also been rehabbing from hip surgery a season ago and has yet to take contact, but has taken part in parts of practices. Both still have some significant strides to make before playing in a regular season game.
Add in the fact that the Ducks need and want to adapt to a faster style of play, and it becomes even more imperative that newer and rookie Ducks showcase their abilities to make the roster.
Currently, the Ducks have 32 players left on their training camp roster (as of Sep. 28) and will need to make some choices on who stays and who goes. The roster needs to be narrowed to 23 players.
With this context in mind, let’s take a glimpse at what the goaltending, defense pairings, and forward lines may look like when the Ducks face the Sharks this Wednesday, Oct 3.