Projecting Lines: Anaheim Ducks
It is that time of year… just a few months out from the beginning of October which means the start of a new NHL season. This offseason was a busy one, so this series will tackle the projecting starting lineups for each NHL team.
The Ducks are looking to repeat the success they had last season, making it all the way to the Western Conference Finals. They had a relatively quiet off season, mainly focused on securing their D core of the future. Resulting in giving up some valuable assets to Las Vegas via the expansion draft. But, nonetheless their forwards led by no other than the two superstars who have guided this team over the past 10 years. They have a few blossoming goal scorers in Rickard Rakell and Ondrej Kase. Overall, the Ducks have a great balance up front between veteran experience and some young talent.
L, C, R
Nick Ritchie, Ryan Getzlaf, Corey Perry
Andrew Cogliano, Ryan Kesler, Rickard Rakell
Jakob Silverberg, Antione Vermette, Ondrej Kase
Logan Shaw, Chris Wagner, Patrick Eaves
Well done Anaheim – they were able to pull some strings and keep their top 4 defenders. Although they did lose a few key defensive assets for the future, the Ducks are a team bound to win in the next few years. Their well balanced D from 1-6 could contend for the top 3 D cores in the league. They boast studs on the top 2 lines and compliment them with solid depth defenders on the 3rd pairing.
Cam Fowler, Sami Vatanen
Hampus Lindholm, Kevin Bieksa
Josh Manson, Korbinian Holzer
This is where the Ducks get interesting. John Gibson is a stud between the pipes. He is young and just scratching the surface of the prime of his career – his best years are definitely in front of him. The same could not be said for newcomer, Ryan Miller. Gibson will start at least 60 games, bearing his health, but the real question is – can Ryan Miller perform like he used to? Does he have any gas left in the tank?