Team: Anaheim Ducks
A division title? Wonderful. A 3-2 series lead with home ice advantage? Well, that sure sounds great! A Game 6 loss? That.....well, actually that sounds familiar, why does i- ah crap, it's happening again, isn't it?
For those keeping track, this was the fourth straight season the Ducks have turned a 3-2 series lead with home ice into a 7-game series loss. Well, say what you will about the Ducks, but they've sure been a model of consistency!
The blame for this fell squarely onto the four shoulders of Bruce Boudreau, who was fired in the offseason, and replaced by.......hey, you know what would be funny? Nah, never mind. There's no way they'd be that stupid.
Your Head Coach
OHHHHHHHH MYYYYYY GODDDDDDDDDDDDD YOU ACTUALLY DID IT
Randy Carlyle returns to town after already being driven out once before. The same players who practically held a mutiny to get rid of him in the first place are now swallowing their words and saying he's the coach they need. The Anaheim Ducks are turning into that episode of King of the Hill where Hank and his friends decide to get their old football coach to make the school team win again, but it turns out he's nuts and the kids hate him so much they go play soccer instead.
Much like Boudreau, the Ducks should know what they're getting with Carlyle: perplexing roster decisions, and more shots against than the Cincinnati Zoo. Which defenseman will he alienate first? I CAN'T WAIT TO FIND OUT! Will it be Lindholm? I bet it's Lindholm. I bet he scratches Lindholm for Korbinian Holzer.
Speaking of faces familiar to Carlyle, that's not all.....
Your Starting Goalie
The best part about finding this clip is you search "Jonathan Bernier bad goal" and your internet is like "which one?" There's dozens of these kind of goals that Bernier gave up.
Yes, I know; technically, your starting goalie is John Gibson. But, you know Randy and his toys. It'll be a matter of time before Gibson is "just okay" and Bernier starts fifteen straight down the stretch. The good news, however, is that Bernier is a statistically strong goaltender that only happens to serve up the odd comically bad failure in key moments. To that end, he is a perfect Anaheim Duck.
New Things That Suck
Happy Year One of the Ryan Kesler deal, everyone! Kesler is 32 and put up 21 goals and 53 points last season., and will be destroying your cap until 2022. Beyond that, they didn't really do much this offseason, other than trade for Bernier and hire a coach that will doom them to perpetual failure. They signed Mason Raymond and got David Booth on a PTO, though. The Randy Retreads are all coming in! I'm amazed they didn't keep Mike Santorelli. What; you guys couldn't have given Paul Ranger a call, either?
Things That Still Suck
Orange County is the worst of both worlds. It takes the worst attributes of LA- the soulless, vapid narcissism; being a city populated with airheaded dimwits- and magnifies them. Anaheim is full of nothing more than Trump-voting, anti-vaxxing, Botoxed soccer moms that would plot your murder if you so much as take the last $25 kale salad at Whole Foods. Don't believe me? Never forget that this happened in Orange County. It's like California created a community of people deemed somehow too sociopathic for Los Angeles, which is saying a whole hell of a lot.
The Ducks are the perfect representative of this crapstain of a community. Their franchise is led by the trio of the least likeable players in the NHL. There's the captain that resembles a baby, in that he is very bald and perpetually angry. There's the star winger, that both resembles a raccoon and has the eating habits of one. Finally, there's the overpaid acquisition that, when not perennially underachieving on the ice, spends his time at hot yoga picking up bored housewives neglected by their workaholic husbands.
The LA area has seven different professional sports teams in four leagues, and I struggle to think of one less relevant than this one. The Angels have the best player in baseball; the Clippers at least got rid of their racist windbag owner and are semi-respectable. The Rams....well, they exist again! And even when this team won a Stanley Cup, the Kings- then a terrible team- still outdrew them. The only reason anyone paid attention to them was their Disney appeal, and now that's long gone.
Why You Might Not Suck
This team is still good enough to succeed in spite of Carlyle. Plus, the defense is decent.