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Ducks, Predators dive into playoff posturing pool

DUCKS FYI

Ducks General Manager Bob Murray says Nashville's players are purposely falling in games. Predators Coach Barry Trotz says the charge is disrespectful. Game 4 is Wednesday night.

April 19, 2011|By Chris Foster
  • Nashville defenseman Cody Franson, front, lands on top of Ducks right wing George Parros after delivering a check during Game 3 of the Western Conference quarterfinals on Monday.
Nashville defenseman Cody Franson, front, lands on top of Ducks right wing… (J. Masotti Jr. / Reuters )

Reporting from Nashville — Now it's a playoff series.

Ducks General Manager Bob Murray seemed to read right from "Playoff Posturing 101," claiming the Nashville Predators were guilty of taking dives during games.

Nashville Coach Barry Trotz said, "I'm not going to say anything about that," then added, "but it's disrespectful."

Ducks Coach Randy Carlyle told reporters, "I'll just say the video doesn't lie."

All this traditional playoff yada-yada-yada was the lead-in to Game 4 on Wednesday, with the Predators leading the first-round series, 2-1. Everyone wanted to get a sound bite in, though not everyone was allowed to quip and run.

Carlyle, asked by a Nashville television reporter about what was on the video, replied, "You should look at the video."

What followed was either an old-school-hockey chat or preschool petulance.

Reporter: "I looked at it."

Carlyle: "You should look at it."

Reporter: "People said about the 2-2-1 …"

Carlyle: "I said the video doesn't lie. Now, you want to make any other comments about the video, then you look at the video and make a comment. I'm not making any more about it."

Ducks media relations employee: "Any more questions?"

There were, but ones not nearly so entertaining. The voice of moderation was the Ducks' Teemu Selanne, who has looked at the video.

Asked how you can tell when someone is diving, Selanne said, "You just know, as a player with experience, if a guy goes down easy."

Asked if that was seen on the videos from the first three games, Selanne said, "There's a couple. I wouldn't make a big deal out of it."

Too late.

A case for hate

Like any playoff series, the more the Ducks and Predators play, the more the animosity grows.

Said Carlyle: "You have to develop a hatred for them; that's what happens when you're pushing against the same guy face to face in confrontational situations. You don't like him."

As for the Ducks, Carlyle said, "We hate everybody we play in the playoffs."

Selanne said, "It's been building, but maybe not as much as some series. It's been pretty clean."

So far in this "pretty clean" series:

• Nashville's Martin Erat had four teeth knocked out in Game 1.

• The Ducks' Bobby Ryan was suspended for two games after using his skate to stomp on the foot of Nashville's Jonathon Blum in Game 2.

• Murray after Game 3 did his finger-pointing.

Beleskey's turn

With Ryan out one more game, Matt Beleskey took up skating on the top line with Corey Perry and Ryan Getzlaf in practice Tuesday.

Beleskey finished Game 3 with those two, and scored a goal when the puck hit his skate as he fell, then ricocheted off the skate of a Nashville player.

"It wasn't the prettiest goal, but that's a playoff goal," Beleskey said.

Hiller goes home

Jonas Hiller, the Ducks' No. 1 goaltender, was sent home from Nashville as he is continuing to suffer from vertigo symptoms.

chris.foster@latimes.com

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