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DUCKS REPORT

Player Response Satisfies Charron

April 03, 2001|ELLIOTT TEAFORD

Pierre Gauthier, team president and general manager, refuses to discuss the status of Coach Guy Charron until season's end. But now that the discussion day is almost at hand, how does Charron feel about his status?

"I don't expect to hear anything until after the season's over," said Charron, who took over when Craig Hartsburg was fired Dec. 14. "I think the biggest satisfaction I've had is the response of the players. The players have bought into the system. I've never had a problem with the players not responding."

The Ducks are 14-24-6-2 under Charron, including 9-10-4-1 since the Feb. 4 All-Star game. Charron set a goal of recording a .500 or better record in games after the all-star break. They have three games left, starting with Wednesday's against the Colorado Avalanche.

"Every coach has to have confidence in his ability," Charron said. "Pierre oversees the operation of this team. It's his decision. I'm confident in what I can do. Every coach at this level knows he can do it, but sometimes things are not in his control."

Certainly, it has been difficult to gauge how well Charron has performed because he hasn't had an injury-free squad since taking over. Injuries to forwards Paul Kariya, Mike Leclerc and Steve Rucchin, and defensemen Niclas Havelid and Ruslan Salei crippled the Ducks' playoff hopes during a 2-10-1 January.

"Every team goes through injuries, but at one point, we were missing two-thirds of our top two lines," Charron said. "Look at St. Louis, they lose their top two defensemen [Al MacInnis and Chris Pronger] and all of a sudden they have trouble winning."

*

Hartsburg is interested in buying the Sault Ste. Marie Greyhounds of the junior-level Ontario Hockey League, according to a story in a Canadian newspaper.

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