Anaheim Ducks: Has Bob Murray Embraced the Tank?

ANAHEIM, CA - FEBRUARY 13: Anaheim Ducks Head Coach Bob Murray yells out from the bench during the first period of a game against the Vancouver Canucks played on February 13, 2019 at the Honda Center in Anaheim, CA. (Photo by John Cordes/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images)
ANAHEIM, CA - FEBRUARY 13: Anaheim Ducks Head Coach Bob Murray yells out from the bench during the first period of a game against the Vancouver Canucks played on February 13, 2019 at the Honda Center in Anaheim, CA. (Photo by John Cordes/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images) /

The Anaheim Ducks end their three-game Canadian road trip tonight in the beautiful homeland of the Vancouver Cancuks.

It was a little more than a week ago that the Anaheim Ducks geared up for their first game under the leadership of their General Manager, Bob Murray. Kevin Boyle got the nod to start in net, and during his first NHL career start, he shut out the Vancouver Canucks, 1-0, saving an impressive 35 shots on goal.

Now, the teams are back at it again tonight. However, this time, Murray has a completely different attitude about his team. Will this change the way they play tonight? Has GMHCBM finally embraced the tank like so many of the Anaheim Ducks fans?

It’s Game Time! What You Need to Know Before Puck Drop

Did You Know?  14 years ago today, the Anaheim Ducks current owners, Henry and Susan Samueli, reached an agreement with Disney to purchase the Mighty Ducks of Anaheim.

Game 63: Anaheim Ducks vs Vancouver Canucks

Season Record: 24-29-9 (57 points, 7th in the Pacific Division)

Location: Rogers Arena — Vancouver, British Columbia

Time: 7:00 pm PST

TV: Fox Sports West

Radio: AM 830

Anaheim Ducks News: 

-Anaheim Ducks trade Brandon Montour to the Buffalo Sabres for Brendan Guhle and a 2019 1st round draft pick.

-Anaheim Ducks trade Michael Del Zotto to the St. Louis Blues for a 6th round draft pick

Anaheim Ducks Injuries: John Gibson (Back), Chad Johnson (Head), Ryan Getzlaf (UBI), Carter Rowney (UBI), Ondrej Kase (Shoulder)

Vancouver Canucks Injuries: Sven Baertschi (Concussion), Thatcher Demko (Knee), Alexander Edler (Concussion), Brandon Sutter (Groin), Chris Tanev (Ankle), Jake Virtanen (Ribs)

Embracing the Tank or Just Taking Precautions?

The trade deadline has officially passed, and the Anaheim Ducks made three trades over the course of two days. The last two were pretty insignificant but snagged us an AHL’er and a 6th round draft pick. The first one, however, is definitely worth mentioning.

Sunday evening, it was announced that Bob Murray had traded 24-year-old defenseman, Brandon Montour, to the Buffalo Sabres for a first-round draft pick and 21-year-old defenseman, Brendan Ghule. While many are still in shock that Murray would make a move like this, we knew it was coming.

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With the re-signing of Jakob Silfverberg, something had to give. Brandon Montour just happened to be the most expendable and easiest to move. Nevertheless, the young prospect, Brendan Ghule, that we received in return, has been said to be Buffalo’s most promising defensive prospect before they drafted Rasmus Dahlin in the 2018 NHL Entry Draft.

After the announcement was made, Bob Murray was quoted as saying this:

"“Brendan Guhle is an excellent skater who is ready to take the next step in his career. Adding Guhle and a first-round pick is an important step as we retool our team moving forward.”"

The key word in this quote is “retool.” Ducks Nation has been waiting for Bob Murray to drop the “r-word” for months now, but he has never given us the satisfaction of thinking anything other than he was pushing for the Anaheim Ducks to make a last second run to the playoffs.

Now that it seems like he has accepted the fact that the Anaheim Ducks are not in a position to win this season, where do they go from here? Are we going to see the team from earlier this season re-emerge? If they want to have any chance of drafting someone like Jack Hughes or Kaapo Kakko, that is not the worst strategy I have heard.

However, this could also be Bob Murray’s way of coming to terms with how this season is going to end. We could still see the Anaheim Ducks bring a certain level of competing to their game, but neither winning or losing matters as much anymore. Could Bob Murray’s statement be his way of coming to terms with whatever happens at the end of the season?

There will be no clear or definitive answer to these questions until we see the Anaheim Ducks out on the ice over the next few games. While it would be nice to think that Bob Murray is hoping to draft high this season, it wouldn’t be completely unreasonable to think he could still push his team to try and snag a few unnecessary wins before the season ends.

Regardless, the Anaheim Ducks are well on their way to choosing one, maybe even two, blue-chip prospects in this season’s NHL Entry Draft. Could we see a situation similar to the 2003 draft when the Ducks chose both Ryan Getzlaf and Corey Perry? Only time will tell!

Next. The Anaheim Ducks Trade Brandon Montour to Buffalo. dark

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