2014 NHL Playoffs: Scouting the Anaheim Ducks Before Their Series With the Dallas Stars

Bruce Bennett

All the basics you need to know about the Anaheim Ducks skaters.

I'll be honest, outside of the obvious names, I don't know a whole lot about the Anaheim Ducks. I know their coach, I know their superstars and I know they occasionally leave a mascot dangling above the ice surface.

But that's not nearly enough to prepare for the Dallas Stars first-round series against their former Pacific Division rivals. So with the help of the Ducks official website and ExtraSkater.com, I compiled a list of every forward and defenseman that is likely to see the ice at some point in this series with relevant simple and advanced statistics.

I cherry-picked two advanced stats that translate for both forwards and defensemen, respectively.

The first is Corsi relative, which evaluates how effective a player is at driving shot attempt production (or at least, how effective his team is when he is one the ice) compared to how his team done without him on the ice. Positive numbers are better.

The other is offensive-zone start percentage is the number of shifts a player starts in the offensive zone divided by the total number of shifts he starts in the offensive and defensive zones combined. This can be used as a rough indicator of usage or how much a team is leaning on a particular player defensively.

Full disclosure - I have seen three Ducks games this season, and my speculation about usage is based on reading articles, looking at the numbers and some cursory Googling. This is all to the best of my knowledge, but given this is the playoffs and secrecy is the name of the day, there is always the chance they change things up drastically.

So without further adieu, the basics on each and every skater the Ducks are likely to use at some point in this series.

Forwards

Matt Beleskey

LW, 6-0, 200, left shot

Games Goals Primary Assists Secondary Assists Points PIMs Time on Ice Corsi Rel O-Zone Start
55 9 9 6 24 64 10.1 -0.2% 52.7%

In the ever-present search for a left wing to play with Perry and Getzlaf, the Ducks have settled on Beleskey in their recent stretch. A career Duck, he fills a net-crash role and can retrieve the puck for his more talented linemates. He's the workhorse and they're the thoroughbreds.

Nick Bonino

C, 6-1, 196, left shot

Games Goals Primary Assists Secondary Assists Points PIMs Time on Ice Corsi Rel O-Zone Start
77 22 14 13 49 22 16.0 -0.4% 50.3%

The Ducks third-leading scorer this season in both goals and total points, the young center has blossomed this seasons as he's bounced around the lineup. He's been part of the revolving left wing alongside Getzlaf and Perry and gets a large chunk of his points - 20 before the season finale - on the power play.

Andrew Cogliano

C, 5-10, 181, left shot

Games Goals Primary Assists Secondary Assists Points PIMs Time on Ice Corsi Rel O-Zone Start
82 21 13 8 42 26 15.2 -2.4% 48.7%

The fourth of the Ducks four 20-goal scorers, Cogliano is really viewed as a two-way center who helps solidify the Ducks defensive game. His three short-handed goals and five game winners (third to Getzlaf and Perry) make him one of the role players that could define this series.

Ryan Getzlaf

C, 6-4, 221, right shot

Games Goals Primary Assists Secondary Assists Points PIMs Time on Ice Corsi Rel O-Zone Start
77 31 35 21 87 31 21.0 1.3% 48.8%

Perry finishes the plays, but it's Getzlaf who creates them. One of the most dynamic centers in the NHL who would get far, far more attention if he played in the Eastern Conference, he and Tyler Seguin went back and forth much of the year in the points battle. His wife is nine months pregnant, though, and he's already told the local media that the birth of his child takes precedence over any game (as it should). The baby is due in early May.

Saku Koivu

C/RW, 5-10, 181, left shot

Games Goals Primary Assists Secondary Assists Points PIMs Time on Ice Corsi Rel O-Zone Start
65 11 8 10 29 46 14.9 -5.2% 44.6%

One of the most respected figures in hockey, Koivu is still in search of his first career Stanley Cup. He's not the player he once was - being 39 will do that to any man - and he's used in primarily a defensive specialist role for the Ducks this year. Among players who regularly take faceoffs for Anaheim, he's second at just over 50 percent.

Patrick Maroon

LW, 6-3, 230, left shot

Games Goals Primary Assists Secondary Assists Points PIMs Time on Ice Corsi Rel O-Zone Start
62 11 13 5 29 101 12.2 5.2% 55.6%

Maroon really grabbed a place in the NHL this year, chipping in decent production from the Ducks lower lines. He's the team leader in penalty minutes (though Antoine Roussel scoffs at his paltry total).

Kyle Palmieri

RW, 5-11, 195, right shot

Games Goals Primary Assists Secondary Assists Points PIMs Time on Ice Corsi Rel O-Zone Start
71 14 6 11 31 38 11.8 -2.8% 51.7%

Another of the lower line forwards, Palmieri has chipped in a nice and career-high 31 points this year. He does a decent job of drawing calls for a lower-liner, and he has seen a decent chunk of power play time as well.

Mathieu Perreault

C, 5-10, 185, left shot

Games Goals Primary Assists Secondary Assists Points PIMs Time on Ice Corsi Rel O-Zone Start
69 18 14 11 43 36 13.7 1.9% 53.6%

Perreault has seen an offensive resurgence with the Ducks, posting career highs for both goals and points after spending four seasons on the lower lines of the Washington Capitals. He's been one of the hotter goal scorers for the Ducks down the stretch as well.

Corey Perry

RW, 6-3, 212, right shot

Games Goals Primary Assists Secondary Assists Points PIMs Time on Ice Corsi Rel O-Zone Start
81 43 27 12 82 65 19.2 4.2% 51.2%

Big, skilled and hot-tempered, Perry is the finisher of the Ducks two-headed first line monster. The Stars know him very well by this point, from his skill in tight coverage to his tendency to let an irritating force on the other team get under his skin. He and Getzlaf are the head of the Ducks dragon.

Rickard Rakell

C, 6-1, 192, right shot

Games Goals Primary Assists Secondary Assists Points PIMs Time on Ice Corsi Rel O-Zone Start
18 0 3 1 4 2 11.5 6.7% 50.8%

The rookie Swede, a first-round pick from the 2011 draft, rejoined the team in March and has been a fairly regular presence in the lineup ever since.

Teemu Selanne

RW, 6-0, 209, right shot

Games Goals Primary Assists Secondary Assists Points PIMs Time on Ice Corsi Rel O-Zone Start
64 9 10 8 27 12 14.0 0.6% 55.2%

Once considered the ageless wonder, father time has finally caught up with Selanne this season. He's not the sniper he once was with only nine goals to show for the year, but he remains a very dangerous man to leave open. The Ducks shelter his minutes, but he remains a decent possession player. Don't overlook him in this series, though, as he's a known Stars killer. I've got good money that he'll undoubtedly score against the Stars.

Jakob Silfverberg

RW, 6-1, 200, right shot

Games Goals Primary Assists Secondary Assists Points PIMs Time on Ice Corsi Rel O-Zone Start
64 10 9 4 23 12 14.1 0.1% 49.9%

The second-year forward was part of the deal that sent Bobby Ryan to the Ottawa Senators, but his offensive performance has to be a slight disappointment this year. He put up very similar numbers (10-9-19) in his rookie season in 16 fewer games.

Devante Smith-Pelly

RW, 6-0, 222, right shot

Games Goals Primary Assists Secondary Assists Points PIMs Time on Ice Corsi Rel O-Zone Start
19 2 3 5 10 2 12.4 -9.1% 60.2%

Smith-Pelly spent a chunk of time up with the Ducks at the beginning of the year and recently rejoined the big club after a very successful stint with the AHL's Norfolk Admirals. He's known as a forechecking presence and a player who is not afraid to try and make a big hit.

Daniel Winnik

C, 6-2, 207, left shot

Games Goals Primary Assists Secondary Assists Points PIMs Time on Ice Corsi Rel O-Zone Start
76 6 19 5 30 23 15.2 -2.8% 48.3%

Along with Koivu and Cogliano, Winnik is one of the forwards the Ducks use in primarily defensive assignments. Given that, his career high over 30 points is even more impressive.

Minor leaguers unlikely to play: John Kurtz

Injured: Tim Jackman (broken hand)

Defense

Bryan Allen

6-5, 224, left shot

Games Goals Primary Assists Secondary Assists Points PIMs Time on Ice Corsi Rel O-Zone Start
68 0 0 10 10 75 17.3 0.2% 49.4%

The tough guy of the Ducks back end, Allen leads the defense in penalty minutes. He's essentially a third-pairing defenseman for the Ducks and will likely be used against the Stars third and fourth lines rather than given the assignment of trying to shut down Jamie Benn and Tyler Seguin.

Francois Beauchemin

6-1, 207, left shot

Games Goals Primary Assists Secondary Assists Points PIMs Time on Ice Corsi Rel O-Zone Start
70 4 6 7 17 39 22.8 -2.1% 50.6%

Beauchemin has been a mainstay of the Ducks defensive corps since 2005-06, save a two year stint in Toronto, and for good reason. He's a very solid shut-down defenseman who is now partnered with fellow French-speaker Robidas. His advanced statistics don't speak to him as a first-pairing guy this year - that honor goes to Ben Lovejoy and Cam Fowler - but I'd put good money on Beauchemin and Robidas getting the bulk of the minutes against the Stars first line.

Cam Fowler

6-1, 207, left shot

Games Goals Primary Assists Secondary Assists Points PIMs Time on Ice Corsi Rel O-Zone Start
70 6 12 18 36 14 23.5 -1.2% 49.5%

Is not Scott Glennie.

Hampus Lindholm

6-3, 197, left shot

Games Goals Primary Assists Secondary Assists Points PIMs Time on Ice Corsi Rel O-Zone Start
78 6 14 10 30 36 23.5 1.5% 52.9%

It's been nothing short of a stellar rookie season for Lindholm, who was the Ducks first round pick in the 2012 draft. He's been used in sheltered minutes but put up incredibly respectable offensive numbers. Also unquestionably the winner of best first name on the team.

Ben Lovejoy

6-2, 205, right shot

Games Goals Primary Assists Secondary Assists Points PIMs Time on Ice Corsi Rel O-Zone Start
78 5 8 5 18 39 19.1 -2.2% 48.6%

Another player with a breakthrough season, Lovejoy has reached the offensive output he put up with the very strong 2011 Penguins, and he's also done a very good job forming the more defensively solid half of the pairing with Fowler that has played the true "shutdown" minutes for the team. Again, with the availability of a Robidas-Beauchemin pair, you'd think the Ducks would go that direction for matchups, but that's not how they've been trending this season.

Stephane Robidas

5-11, 190, right shot

Games Goals Primary Assists Secondary Assists Points PIMs Time on Ice Corsi Rel O-Zone Start
14 1 2 2 5 8 20.4 1.5% 53.6%

(Stats only from his time with the Ducks). Playing a primarily offensive role at the moment alongside Francois Beauchemin, Robidas is a known commodity to Stars fans. Expect him to have some furious battles with the Stars forwards.

Lucas Sbisa

6-2, 198, left shot

Games Goals Primary Assists Secondary Assists Points PIMs Time on Ice Corsi Rel O-Zone Start
30 1 1 4 6 43 16.8 -0.9% 52.1%

Sbisa has been in and out of the lineup with injuries all year, from two sprained ankles to a right hand injury that cost him 26 games. When he's been in, he's been serviceable for Anaheim, piling up a fairly large number of penalty minutes along with some sheltered minutes.

Sami Vatanen

5-10, 183, right shot

Games Goals Primary Assists Secondary Assists Points PIMs Time on Ice Corsi Rel O-Zone Start
48 6 9 6 21 22 16.8 3.2% 53.6%

The rookie has been up and down from the AHL all season to fill in for a variety of injured blueliners, and he's filled in more than admirably, contributing a solid offensive production in his fairly favorable playing time. He's been in and out of the lineup recently as the Ducks got healthy though.

Injured: Mark Fistric (conditioning assignment, lower body), Sheldon Souray (wrist)

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