Lydman, who missed all of training camp due to an acute case of double vision he suffered early in September, was back in the weight room and on the ice today. Still no official word if we will see Toni against the Canucks tonight, but his recovery is looking good. Also, there is still no official word as to what happened to him. He’s been know to be prone to migranes in the past, but something like this could point to a more serious problem. We’re keeping our fingers and toes crossed that whatever it is, the docs have found a cure.
It looks like the Bobby Ryan as a center experiment has come to an end. One of those ideas that appeared better on paper than it did on the ice. But hey, that’s what preseason is for, experimentation. If Lydman is back in the lineup and Cam Fowler manages to secure his spot, the Ducks need to have all possible permutations in place – at least, in theory, that is.
The drubbing by the Kings was rather more severe than anticipated, but the loss wasn’t unexpected. Hiller sat out the entire game and our passing game was bad, to say the least. However, once again, this is preseason and the time to experiment with the unexpected. Sometimes it works, sometimes it doesn’t. As far as I can tell, the Kings have their lines pretty well set and the guys are clicking well, which means they’ll be fine until someone gets injured and a solid, practiced back-up plan isn’t ready to go.
The Kings have a great selection of well seasoned, talented players, but they may very well be making the same mistake they made last season – not an enforcer in sight. Sure, Wayne Simmonds is always willing to throw down, but he’s overworked and his fight card isn’t very well orchestrated. Now, some may take exception because the Kings do have a decent selection of guys who are anything but pushovers, but none of them are fighters. The closest thing they’ve got is battering ram power of Dustin Brown and Kevin Westgarth’s pit bull tenacity, but they need some Broad Street Bully attitude on the bench if they’re gonna make it into post.
As Princeton buddies who had dinner together after the game, I’m sure the Westgarth/Parros “fight” was a prearranged “wanna go?” designed to bring a little life into an otherwise lackluster game. When asked his opinion about the festivities, Westgarth said he thought it was “hilarious”.
Tonight’s Ducks/Canucks game will be aired on NHL Network and the radio broadcast will be streamed live on anaheimducks.com, 7pm Pacific time.