Anaheim’s general manager accuses the Predators of diving to
draw penalties, and Ducks coach Randy Carlyle says check the
Nashville coach Barry Trotz dismisses the accusations from a
team that racked up hundreds of penalty minutes, noting his
Predators are among the NHL’s least penalized.
The Western Conference series is getting as hot off the ice as
General manager Bob Murray told the Orange County Register on
Monday his Ducks would have to start diving like the Predators to
draw penalties, which he called ”ridiculous.” Carlyle said
Tuesday the Ducks need more power plays with a 16-12 edge for
Nashville skewed by Anaheim getting three in the final minutes of
Asked if he agrees with his boss, Carlyle had a short
”I just say the video doesn’t lie. That’s the only statement
that I’ve got,” Carlyle said.
The Ducks have been upset both with the penalty calls and their
own play in a 4-3 loss Sunday night as Nashville went up 2-1 in
this series. Game 4 is Wednesday night in Nashville, delayed a day
by a Lady Gaga concert Tuesday night at the Bridgestone Arena.
Not that the Ducks have any love for opponents this time of
”We hate everybody we play in the playoffs,” Carlyle said.
Some of the Predators said after practice Tuesday that they
hadn’t seen or heard of Murray’s comments. Trotz twice said he
really had no comment while taking his own stab at the Ducks.
”I think it’s more disrespectful to the players that are
playing in the league,” Trotz said.
He defended his Predators as a team that has been disciplined
all season, not just the last couple games. The Predators ranked
fourth in the NHL in taking the fewest penalties and third in
fewest penalty minutes while Anaheim racked up 1,178 penalty
minutes for 26th in the NHL.
”In the regular season, they had 500 more penalty minutes than
we did …,” Trotz said. ”So we’ve taken a few less than
The Ducks did have three different players with more than 100
penalty minutes in Corey Perry (104), Brad Winchester (114) and
George Parros (171). Jarkko Ruutu had 97 himself. Compare that to
Nashville, and defenseman Shane O’Brien had a team-high 83 penalty
minutes during the regular season.
This series has been very physical with the tone set in the
third period of Game 1 in Anaheim with a combined 50 penalty
minutes. Anaheim had 40 of those, just a minute shy of the most
ever by a team in a period. San Jose had 41 penalty minutes on
April 13, 2007.
Parros and Sheldon Brookbank each have 14 penalty minutes with
captain Ryan Getzlaf having 7 himself. O’Brien has 10 penalty
Trotz noted O’Brien started his career with Anaheim and that the
defenseman is working hard to avoid penalties.
”He’s done a really good job,” Trotz said. ”He’s toed the
Predator line of playing disciplined hockey, staying out of the
box. He’ll still have a moment or two where he’ll take a penalty.
For the most part, he’s 100 times better than he was three or four
Several of the Predators claimed not to have heard Murray’s
comments. Nashville forward Jordin Tootoo, whose physical style
prompts fans to blow a train whistle whenever he’s on the ice, said
he’ll leave calls to the officials.
”I’m not going to get in a war of words. I have no time for
that. Actions speak louder than words,” he said.
O’Brien had heard the talk. He noted Murray has won a Stanley
Cup and is well respected in the NHL. He thinks Murray may have
been trying to get his Ducks going or try to draw attention away
from how Anaheim has played in a series where Nashville has outshot
the offensive team in each of the first three games.
The Predators are focusing on their chance to grab control of
this series by doing something this franchise has never done in
five previous playoff series and go up 3-1. They lost to Chicago a
year ago when leading 2-1. O’Brien, who joined Nashville through a
trade with Vancouver in October, said he thinks his teammates
learned from that experience.
”We think we can play even better. We think we can tighten up
our defensive coverage a little bit better and tighten up our
discipline,” O’Brien said. ”We’re excited, and we’re going to
take advantage of the home crowd tomorrow. We need to find a way to
get that game down. If it’s 2-2 going back to Anaheim, the momentum
swings back to them.”
Trotz is keeping the approach the same and simple.
”It’s a race to four. That’s how we have to approach it. Every
game we’ve approached probably the last two months as the most
important of the year,” Trotz said.
The Ducks expect the two-day break between games to refresh
them. They also take some confidence from having scored three goals
on a measly 16 shots Sunday.
”We know we can play better,” Getzlaf said. ”We got beat by a
team that outworked us and played hard. You can’t accept that by
any means in the playoffs, and we’ll be ready to go (Wednesday)
Notes: The Ducks sent goalie Jonas Hiller back to Anaheim as he
works to recover from vertigo. Anaheim brought Igor Bobkov to