As the 2021-22 season draws closer and closer, there will be plenty of Anaheim Ducks news and rumors to cover every week. With that being said, here is the first edition of Ducks News & Rumors, which will cover Trevor Zegras, new jersey numbers for a trio of Ducks, and Ryan Getzlaf’s thoughts after his first venture into free agency.
Zegras Ready for More Responsibllity
Zegras will be entering his first full season in the NHL in 2021-22 and is confident that he can handle the role of being the Ducks’ top center. In a recent interview at the Smashfest Charity Ping-Pong Challenge, he said, “I kind of just want to go there, be the best player I can be and try and help the team any way I can.”
Down the stretch I played center and thought I played great. I definitely worked on my face-offs and I just feel really comfortable in the middle of the ice. It just felt normal.
-Trevor ZegrasInterview at 2021 Smashfest Charity Ping-Pong Challenge
The probability of Zegras taking over that top-line center role this upcoming season is high, given that Getzlaf has suffered a drop in production. It’s still unknown whether Adam Henrique will be with the team come the beginning of the season and Sam Steel and Derek Grant are not suited for top-line minutes.
Ducks’ Rookies Heading to Arizona in September
The Ducks will be taking part in what has become an annual tradition of the American teams from the Pacific Division, in addition to the Colorado Avalanche competing in a rookie tournament before the beginning of the NHL season. Of course, the Arizona Coyotes are now in the Central Division thanks to the addition of the Seattle Kraken, but the Coyotes will still be playing host to the three-game tournament. It will take place from Friday, Sept. 17, to Monday, Sept. 20.
Tickets and streaming information are available at ArizonaCoyotes.com/RookieFaceoff. The Ducks’ Rookie Faceoff roster has not yet been announced, but there is a high possibility that this is the first time that fans will be able to see newly drafted prospects Mason McTavish, Olen Zellweger and Sasha Pastujov in a Ducks jersey, given that there was not a summer development camp this summer.
New Jersey Numbers for Terry, Comtois, Lundestrom
At least three Ducks will have new jersey numbers this upcoming season. Troy Terry, Max Comtois and Isac Lundestrom all have been given the stamp of approval, which comes with becoming an everyday player in the NHL — being able to choose a low jersey number.
While Terry and Lundestrom chose 19 and 21, respectively, Comtois opted for 44, which is a fairly high number compared to some players, but it’s also the number that he wore during his juniors days. Lundestrom has typically worn 20 or 22 while playing for Team Sweden, but both numbers are occupied. Terry previously wore 19 during both his collegiate hockey and AHL seasons and his former jersey number 61 was, as he put it, “just 19 turned upside down.”
Getzlaf Taking It Slow
The captain returned to the Ducks on a one-year deal after briefly flirting with free agency this offseason. He said that he never really considered retirement given how last season went and that he was only going to sign a one-year deal wherever he ended up. “Ultimately, Anaheim has always been where my heart is,” said Getzlaf in an interview with NHL Network.
Though retirement never weighed on his mind, it’s evident that Getzlaf is coming close to the end of his career. He previously stated that he does not want to play into his 40’s like former teammate Teemu Selanne, so it’s safe to assume that Getzlaf will be hanging up his skates within the next three seasons.
That’s all for this edition of Ducks News & Rumors. The Ducks are typically tight-lipped when it comes to trade rumors of any kind, but things could start heating up once we get closer to the start of the regular season.
Derek has been a hockey fan for almost a decade and has been a sports fan in general for more than two decades.
He graduated from UCCS in Colorado Springs, CO in May 2020 with a bachelor’s degree in Sports Communication. He spent the last several years as part of UCCS’ on-campus student newspaper staff (both as a reporter and editor) and is now creating Ducks-related content from his home in Southern California.