Anaheim Ducks: Preseason Takeaways

NHL.com

The Anaheim Ducks wrapped up their eight-game preseason slate on Sunday with a 4-4-0 record. Although the Ducks have been adjusting to significant changes within the organization since the first day of the off-season, they continued to face obstacles well into the final week of the preseason. While the team continues to familiarize themselves with their new head coach, Greg Cronin, they may also be adjusting to a lack of overall chemistry due to delays in contract signings. With the Duck’s 2023-2024 season officially beginning on Saturday, let’s review the biggest preseason takeaways.

Throughout the preseason, Anaheim faced the San Jose Sharks, the Los Angeles Kings, and the Arizona Coyotes. They were off to a seemingly impressive start, considering they were without two key players. During Trevor Zegras and Jamie Drysdale’s unanticipated absence, there were some surprising standout players, such as Sam Carrick and Brett Leason, who both recorded multiple points during several games. As roster cuts were made and contracts were signed, the overall chemistry of the established team began to falter slightly.

ACQUISITIONS AND RELEASES

Within the final week of the preseason, Pat Verbeek acquired defenseman Lassi Thomson from the Ottawa Senators, but he was later released on waivers following the contract signing of Jamie Drysdale. Lassi Thomson had a promising first performance against the Arizona Coyotes, but it appears that Verbeek acquired the defenseman to alleviate the weighing absence of Drysdale. The Edmonton Oilers right winger, Zack Kassian, began a professional try-out with Anaheim at the start of the preseason but was released without a contract last week.

GOALIE COMPETITION

In a recent training camp interview, Greg Cronin spoke about the current “goalie competition” within the organization, which he clarified included John Gibson, Lukas Dostal, and Alex Stallock. Alex Stallock was picked up during the off-season from Chicago and made an appearance in several preseason games. Notably, he subbed in for Gibson in the third period against the Coyotes at Honda Center. Stallock’s overall net-minding style differed vastly from that of John Gibson and Lukas Dostal. Stallock has now been assigned to the San Diego Gulls, meaning Gibson and Dostal will tandem in-net.

WHAT WILL A LACK OF CHEMISTRY MEAN FOR ANAHEIM?

Due to constant roster moves, it is expected that all teams struggle with a slight lack of chemistry heading into a new season. However, with Anaheim amid a rebuild, the roster now consists of a significant amount of rookies. This provides Anaheim with a unique advantage as the organization currently has the highest-ranked prospects in all of the NHL. But, of course, there will be an adjustment period as they become comfortable contending at a national level. As the organization continues to adjust to a new head coach, an influx of young players, and star players missing out on valuable training camp practice, it will be interesting to watch the team develop within the first few weeks of the season. After finishing 32nd in the standings last season, the organization is hopeful that they will find themselves finishing a few spots higher at the end of this season.

Episode 84: Call Your Dad Late Arrivals: An Anaheim Ducks Podcast

The 23-24 season has finally come to a close… well for the Ducks at least. The guys talk the last games of the season and give their player grades for the year. The guys discover that randomly, Cam Fowler is roasted by NHL dot com for some reason and the guys talk about a certain pending UFA again. The guys also give their Round One predictions for the Stanley Cup Playoffs and answer listener questions!Follow Late Arrivals Twitter: @latearrivalspodInstagram: @latearrivalspodFollow the hostsChris: @CJKChelConnor: @91_PlutyJake: @_JRobles71Louis: @Louiex37 Intro/ Outro done by Will Rice/ @pastorwillrice
  1. Episode 84: Call Your Dad
  2. Episode 83: Ooh Ah
  3. Episode 82: The Thinking Man's Podcast
  4. Episode 81: Whatabummer
  5. Episode 80: It's Only Game

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