Quack of Dawn: TST’s Ducks Morning Report

Gary A. Vasquez-USA TODAY Sports
The Sporting Tribune’s Derek Lee reports from the Ducks’ practice on Thursday afternoon.

IRVINE, Calif. – Fresh off an exhilarating comeback win in overtime last night against the Arizona Coyotes, the Ducks were back on the ice for practice this afternoon.

Alex Killorn, who was in a non-contact jersey for yesterday’s morning skate, donned a regular practice jersey for today’s drills and line rushes. He skated on a line with Mason McTavish and Frank Vatrano in the absence of Ryan Strome, who is dealing with an illness and missed last night’s game.

Leo Carlsson and Trevor Zegras were also not on the ice either for today’s practice. Carlsson was going through his off-ice development plan while Zegras was feeling under the weather.

Here is how the team lined up during practice:

Max JonesTroy Terry
Alex KillornMason McTavishFrank Vatrano
Adam HenriqueBenoit-Olivier GroulxJakob Silfverberg
Ross JohnstonSam CarrickBrett Leason
Cam FowlerJackson LaCombe
Pavel MintyukovIlya Lyubushkin
Urho VaakanainenRadko Gudas
Robert HäggTristan Luneau

Robert Hägg and Alex Stalock were on the ice, the former likely practicing with the Ducks even though he’s been reassigned to AHL San Diego because the Gulls are currently in North Carolina to play the Charlotte Checkers.

Stalock was recalled yesterday in the wake of an upper-body for John Gibson and backed up Lukáš Dostál in last night’s game. Gibson was on the ice for practice and didn’t appear to be in any discomfort. He has a few more days to rest and recover if needed with the Ducks not playing again until Sunday.

Killer is close

That game may be when Killorn makes his official Ducks debut after fracturing a finger during preseason, but the forward says he hasn’t been cleared to play yet.

“That was my first full practice,” said Killorn. “We’re going to see how it feels tomorrow. I put a lot of pressure on it today—doing battle drills and stuff, something I haven’t done—so we’re going to see how it reacts to that and then we’ll go from there. I like the way it’s been moving.”

If not Sunday, he’s hopeful that he’ll be able to get into the lineup at some point next week.

Leason hits the century mark

Brett Leason skated in his 100th NHL game last night and has carved out a role on the Ducks’ fourth line. He’s also taken up a key role on the penalty kill alongside linemate Sam Carrick.

“We’re just keeping it simple,” said Leason. “We’re not making difficult plays, just getting (the puck) in and going to work. It’s nice to get on the penalty kill. (The coaching staff) feel like I’m doing a good job and I think I’m doing a good job. It’s nice to be relied on in that role.”

Scary Terry looking for more

Coming off his first-ever four-point game and second-career hat trick, Troy Terry is looking to continue that aggressive approach that drove him to a career night.

Nov 1, 2023; Anaheim, California, USA; Anaheim Ducks right wing Troy Terry (19) celebrates his hat trick goal scored for the victory against the Arizona Coyotes with left wing Max Jones (49) following the overtime period at Honda Center. Mandatory Credit: Gary A. Vasquez-USA TODAY Sports

“Not to sound like a bad teammate—I couldn’t be happier that we’ve been winning games—but selfishly, I’ve wanted to contribute more and was hoping that I can start putting these home and kind of take us to another level and hopefully add some more scoring. Selfishly, for me, it feels good to have a few go in.”

Head coach Greg Cronin revealed during his postgame press conference that he had asked Terry about why he isn’t one of the top-30 scorers in the NHL right now.

“He’s an offensive guy and I think when he skates and he’s efficient with the puck, he gets chances and I think tonight he did more of that,” said Cronin. “I think he can do more of that on top of that, he had a great game.”

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