Ducks' Ryan Getzlaf may need facial surgery after taking puck to the face
It might be time for Randy Carlyle to institute a visor rule
Anaheim Ducks center Ryan Getzlaf's status remains uncertain after being hit in the face by a puck against the Carolina Hurricanes. Getzlaf is expected to miss up to two months with the injury, and he may need surgery to repair the bone fracture in his face. The Ducks have been plagued by injury woes throughout the first month of the season, and losing Getzlaf is a huge blow to the team.
Getzlaf was struck by a puck on Oct. 29, and the Ducks have largely been mum on his status ever since. Getzlaf had a strong start to the season, scoring six points. Now, the Ducks will have to find scoring elsewhere, as their center situation has become even more dire.
Getzlaf is the second star to miss significant time for the Ducks. Defenseman Hampus Lindholm missed time this year with a shoulder injury sustained during last year's Stanley Cup playoffs. With another star down, Randy Carlyle will have his work cut out for him managing depth.
The Ducks have been off to a lukewarm start in 2017, going 6-6-2 through the first leg of the season. They were hoping, of course, for some continuity with the return of Lindholm, but with Getzlaf out they'll need to wait a bit longer. They're currently sixth in the competitive Pacific Division, and are looking to claw their way into contention.
Richard Rakell takes over as the starting center for the Ducks, while Antoine Vermette and Derek Grant will be looking to provide support for the Ducks' mid-lines. Replacing or replicating Getzlaf will be impossible, but the Ducks will need to find stopgaps somewhere. They've been battling injuries all year, but losing a two-way player like Getzlaf for such an extended period of time will make life very difficult moving forward, especially in a division populated by the Kings and the surprising Golden Knights.
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