After tuning out from the Anaheim Ducks for the past two weeks or so I’ve come to realize that sometimes taking a step back is good for your health.
I am a firm believer that honesty is the best policy. So, I must be honest for a moment. It’s been about two weeks since I’ve watched the Anaheim Ducks play hockey. The last game I watched was the 3-2 matinee win against the New Jersey Devils on January 19th.
Mind you, this wasn’t by choice. I was in the process of packing, moving, unpacking, and starting a new job. Hence, the radio silence here on Pucks of a Feather for the past week or so as well.
However, in the midst of my absence from the “Anaheim Ducks scene,” I came to realize that taking a step back from hockey was beneficial in more ways than one.
This season has been really hard for all of us who are faithful fans of the Anaheim Ducks. I don’t blame any of you for voicing your frustrations on social media platforms (Facebook, Twitter, etc.)
Nevertheless, for someone who has earned herself a reputation for being “filled with optimism,” voicing my own frustrations has been something I’ve strayed away from. I now realize if I was more open about my frustrations, watching the Ducks lose maybe wouldn’t have been so difficult.
Watching the Anaheim Ducks lose night after night is a difficult pill to swallow. It becomes even more difficult when you feel like you have to constantly emit positivity. The more the Ducks lost and fell down the standings, the more difficult it became to say things like, “don’t worry, the Anaheim Ducks will turn this season around, they always find a way!”
It’s Time for me to Voice my Frustrations About the Anaheim Ducks
This season is supposed to be a celebration of the past 25-years of Anaheim Ducks hockey. Yet, as I keep telling my friends, the Anaheim Ducks are like that husband that completely forgot it was his anniversary.
The team that I once enjoyed watching so much seems joyless and like they’re just going through the motions. The creativity, tenacity, and determination that is usually there seems to be completely gone this season. To be quite frank, it’s disappointing.
I was a big proponent that Randy Carlyle should have been fired last season. Nevertheless, he was able to ride on the coat tails of the injury excuse as well as the fact that even though they shouldn’t have been there, the Anaheim Ducks still made it to the playoffs.
Every time the camera’s pan in on Carlyle, he looks bored and like he’s not even trying to coach the team. The fact that Getzlaf had to prompt RC to pull John Gibson during their embarrassing loss against Winnipeg on Saturday is further proof that Carlyle has no direction in coaching this team.
The fact that Bob Murray refuses to swallow his pride and fire Carlyle is an embarrassment to the Anaheim Ducks organization. Putting your personal feelings before the needs of your team does not reflect well on him as a General Manager.
No matter the changes he makes, he constantly blames his team. While there is some fault to be put on the roster, he is lying to himself if he really believes that the roster is the sole reason for teams failings as of late.
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Does he not realize that he is the one who created this roster. The fact that he is unwilling to be accountable for his own actions or the actions of his coaching staff just shows ignorance on his part.
While I did say that not all the blame can be placed on the players, there is still a lot I could say about them. This season is about celebration and they aren’t giving us much to cheer for these days. Watching them on the ice feels like they’re constantly stuck in a state of slow motion.
The leadership and communication on this team are non-existent and they comply with playing an out of date style of hockey even though they know it doesn’t work. Not to be too disrespectful, but they are sloppy and lazy.
Lastly, the Samueli’s are letting their team sink and are doing nothing about it. They aren’t willing to force Bob Murray‘s hand whether that’s in the form of a new coach or a big trade. They sit idly by while their team sinks faster than the RMS Titanic.
Taking a Step Back from the Anaheim Ducks Gave me Fresh Perspective
I’ve been following the Anaheim Ducks since 2013. Now, compared to most of you, that’s not very long. However, in that time, the Anaheim Ducks have not missed the playoffs. Not once.
Taking a step back for a few days made me realize how lucky we are as a fanbase to have a team who has made it into the playoffs so many years in a row. Of course, in the previous six seasons, it’s always ended without a cup. However, aside from maybe last season, these past few years the Anaheim Ducks have been actual playoff contenders.
We have not had to sit through years of playoff droughts like the Detroit Red Wings who missed the playoffs 15 out of 17 times between 1966 and 1982. Nor have we had to suffer like the fans of the Florida Panthers, a team who’s inaugural season was during the same year as the Ducks, who have only made it to the playoffs five times in their 25-year history.
Things within the Anaheim Ducks organization are bad. That much is a fact. Nevertheless, stepping back made me realize that every team goes through seasons like this. We’ve just been treated to some really good hockey over the past few years.
Now that the core is starting to feel the effects of father time and the team is under the influence of their head coach, Randy Carlyle, it’s no wonder the 25th anniversary season has turned out this way.
If taking a step back from the Anaheim Ducks for a little bit has taught me anything it is that every team goes through seasons of struggles. Does that make it any easier to sit through? Absolutely not.
However, it does give us hope that this atrocity that has swept through the Anaheim Ducks organization isn’t going to last forever. Maybe the Ducks need to struggle for a season in order to become “Mighty” again.
Besides, reaching rock bottom will teach more valuable lessons that can’t always be learned by being near the top.
What are your thoughts on the Anaheim Ducks season so far? Where do your biggest frustrations with the team lie?