Will desperate Ducks make major trade?
Is it time to press the panic button at Honda Center? Is it time for General Manager Bob Murray to make a major move to shake up — if not break up — the skidding Ducks?Is it time to fire the coach or break up the top line by trading one the team’s star players?
If it doesn’t happen now — after the Ducks lost their sixth in a row Friday by turning a two-goal lead in the third period into a 6-5 loss to the Chicago Blackhawks — it probably never will happen.
That’s because it’s the second six-game losing streak in the past 13 games for the Ducks (6-12-4), who find themselves one point out of last place in the Western Conference after losing 15 of 17 games since a misleading 4-1 start in October.
That start was so long ago, there were NHL cognoscenti who actually thought this team was a Stanley Cup contender and those who believed that Corey Perry, Ryan Getzlaf and Bobby Ryan formed the league’s most prolific scoring line. (OK, I was one of them. Guilty as charged.)
Since then, the questions and arguments have changed dramatically. Now those same experts are wondering what’s going to happen in Anaheim if the Ducks don’t start winning.
Even the guys in the home sweaters are beginning to wonder about the possibility of getting a phone call from Murray and being told to pack up the gear and head to another city.
It’s not likely that Murray suddenly is going to withdraw his support of Coach Randy Carlyle, who hoisted Lord Stanley’s coveted silver chalice in 2007 and has led the Ducks to the playoffs in five of his six seasons behind the bench, so making a major trade is not out of the question.
“Can you blame (management) entirely if they do?” Ryan said after breaking out of his own scoring drought with two goals Friday, his first two since Nov. 3. “Probably not.”