Ducks look for solid start against Red Wings

By Alan Ferguson
Associated Press

October 7, 2010

Anaheim’s All-Star center Ryan Getzlaf is trying to bounce back from a subpar season as he becomes the franchise’s eighth captain.

Getzlaf’s 19 goals and 50 assists in 2009-10 were his fewest in three seasons, and injuries cost him 16 games.

“It’s an honor and a responsibility that I accept,” the 25-year-old Getzlaf told the team’s website. “I’ve thought of myself as a leader and I will try to be the same way throughout this year. I’m up for the challenge and am looking forward to it.”

After pushing the Red Wings to seven games in the 2008 playoffs, the Ducks were denied a fifth consecutive berth after failing to overcome another slow start.

Anaheim was 3-6-1 through its first 10 games and finished 11th in the West, five points behind eighth-place Colorado. The Ducks also had the fourth-fewest points on the road (34) among West teams.

Jonas Hiller is the Ducks No. 1 goaltender after former Conn Smythe Trophy winner Jean-Sebastien Giguere was traded to Toronto on Jan. 31.

The Ducks, though, will have to get over the retirement of another Conn Smythe winner, former captain and defenseman Scott Niedermayer.

While Niedermayer is gone, Finnish veteran forwards Teemu Selanne and Saku Koviu will provide depth alongside younger stars Corey Perry and Bobby Ryan, who is expected to move to center.