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Ducks say they're ready for the toughness of the Kings [updated]

December 03, 2013|By Lance Pugmire
  • The Ducks' Tim Jackman, top, fights with San Jose's Mike Brown.
The Ducks' Tim Jackman, top, fights with San Jose's Mike Brown. (George Nikitin / Associated…)

If someone from the Ducks is going to answer the Kings’ physical ways Tuesday night as the
teams renew their rivalry at Honda Center, recent acquisition Tim Jackman is the most likely.

Jackman has 53 penalty minutes in 14 games, 12 in the four he’s played since joining the
Ducks before their Nov. 22 game.

“You can tell just from the morning skate, there’s more energy and guys are excited to
play,” said Jackman, who has previously dealt with the New York Islanders’ grudge with the New York Rangers and in Calgary’s Canadian feud with Edmonton. “They’re always fun games to play.”

The defending Pacific Division-champion Ducks (18-7-4) and 2012 Stanley Cup-champion Kings
(17-7-4) have a combined winning percentage of .684 -- the best they’ve ever had, with Tuesday’s game being their 113th meeting.

The Kings have imposed their will. Among possible starters Tuesday, they have 334 penalty minutes (55 for left wing Daniel Carcillo) while the Ducks have 274.

Jackman said he’ll be physical himself but doesn’t want to be reduced to watch duty.

“We’re here to battle, this is our home rink and it’s a tough one to come into,” Jackman said of the Ducks’ 10-0-1 record in Anaheim. “I’m going to be ready, make sure I initiate, make contact, do all those things. … To be a physical presence, that’s why they brought me in.

“It’s a big game. I’ve played against the Kings many times. They’re a big team, physical.
But so are we, so it’s going to be a fun one.”

STADIUM SERIES JERSEYS UNVEILED: The Ducks unveiled the special uniforms they’ll wear in their Jan. 25 game against the Kings at Dodger Stadium, a bright orange jersey with an “OC” patch to further distinguish the Southland territorial lines.

There’s also distinct orange in the pants, prompting Ducks forward Matt Beleskey to crack, “They’re definitely going to be able to see us out there.”

MAN OF THE HOUR: Dustin Penner might’ve been less effective as a King, but the Ducks forward said he doesn’t harbor blame toward his former team.

“For what?” Penner asked Monday. “Winning a Cup?”

Penner said the Ducks-Kings rivalry is “probably tougher on my friends here because they have to keep switching teams and justifying it, so now they seem hypocritical coming back to the Ducks’ side. It’s obviously a great rivalry and I have a lot of friends on the team.”

He said Ducks teammates have “a lot of familiarity with the,” Kings, “their system, their players, tendencies. It’s a unique experience for any player, especially in two cities that are heated rivals. There’s a lot of passion.”

Then, he summed up the difference between life as a King, when he went through a divorce
and was demoted from the top two lines, to his situation on the thriving Ducks’ first line with high-scoring Ryan Getzlaf and Corey Perry.

“Every game’s fun now,” Penner said. “Especially this one.”

Getzlaf said he originally expressed disappointment in his teammate for struggling to get in
shape during training camp after Getzlaf urged Ducks’ General Manager Bob Murray to sign Penner.

“If he has his mind to the game and is in good shape, he can do good things,” Getzlaf said. “He put the work in. ‘Pens’ has got a lot of character, knows how to win and knows how to play. He didn’t get a lot of opportunity to play on their top two lines. Here, he came back, knowing he had an opportunity. He’s taken that opportunity and played well.”

OVERDUE TEEMU: Ducks Coach Bruce Boudreau said he’s not alarmed by the 15-game goal-less drought of 43-year-old forward Teemu Selanne.

“He hit the crossbar last game, has missed two open nets … if he was getting no chances, I’d say, ‘OK, what’s up?’ but he’s still getting opportunities,” Boudreau said. “He’s pressing a little harder because he hasn’t gone through this in quite sometime.

“Once he gets one, I’m sure he’ll be pretty streaky after that.”

GAME REPORT: Ducks goalie Jonas Hiller was the first goalie off the ice at Tuesday’s morning skate, a strong indicator he’ll start versus the Kings -- his sixth start in seven games.

Defenseman Bryan Allen is a game-time decision, Boudreau said after the veteran who’s missed three games with a lower-body injury didn’t skate with the team Tuesday.

“He’ll push it in warm-up and give us an indication,” Boudreau said.

Defenseman Francois Beauchemin, who has missed five games with an upper-body injury, also
didn’t skate.

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