Ducks expect a noisy MTS Centre for Game 3 against Winnipeg

Ducks expect a noisy MTS Centre for Game 3 against Winnipeg
Ducks forward Chris Wagner takes a shot against the Devils in March. (Christopher Pasatieri / Getty Images)

The Ducks are skilled, physical and determined and leading their playoff series, two games to none.

They are also smart.


On Sunday, the topic du jour was noise, specifically the noise expected to be generated by the MTS Centre crowd on Monday night for Game 3 of the Winnipeg-Anaheim playoff series.

Earplugs should not be optional.

Pent-up emotion is understandable, after all, considering it will be the first playoff game for the franchise since the team relocated to Winnipeg from Atlanta for the 2011-12 season.

No one foolishly (or inaccurately) said that Ducks' fans would have the sound edge, though they were quite loud for Games 1 and 2 at Honda Center. The Ducks beat the Jets, 2-1, on Saturday night in Game 2 with another patented third-period comeback, scoring twice in the final period.

Anaheim Coach Bruce Boudreau discovered the consequences four years ago when he coached the Capitals after he said in a radio interview that Washington's building had an edge over Madison Square Garden in New York.

"It was pretty crazy, just because I said our fans were louder," he said Sunday morning before the Ducks departed for Winnipeg. "They made a point of proving to me that may not be the case. It was really loud and crazy, that building.

"…Our anticipation or assumption of what it is going to be like in Winnipeg, I don't think they're going to disappoint."

Ducks defenseman Cam Fowler, whose third-period assist on the power-play goal started the Game 2 rally, was asked about the loudest building he has played in.

"That's a good question. I'd say regular season in Winnipeg might have to be up there," Fowler said. "Nashville, in the playoffs, my first year. That building gets going pretty good. Really, any building in the playoffs.

"You look at our building, and these fans have been unbelievable these past two games. We certainly understand the type of energy that we're heading into in Winnipeg."

Said Boudreau: "Most of our players are Canadian and they've been in cities when stuff like this is going on. It'll be pretty wild. It's great time to be a hockey player — going to Winnipeg for the first time in a while hosting a playoff game. They'll be into it, and hopefully that makes our players into it a little bit more."

It all starts before the puck drops, and in this case the double-anthem night. But not all anthems are created equal.

Ducks defenseman Clayton Stoner has spent more time in United Center in Chicago than many of his current teammates by virtue of days with the Minnesota Wild.

"Even when they sing the anthem before the game, it usually gives you goose bumps," Stoner said. "It always sets the stage for the night. That's just one building, and [Montreal's] Bell Centre as well.

"The fans are just very loud. I don't know what it is about that building, it kind of echoes, and it feels like they're right on top of you."


The Ducks said that forward Chris Wagner did not go with the team to Winnipeg on Sunday. Wagner suffered an upper-body injury in the first period of Game 2 on Saturday and did not return. … Winnipeg Jets Coach Paul Maurice is usually good for one gem of a quote per media session, usually more. He did not disappoint Sunday. He was asked about the inclusion of defenseman Adam Pardy for Game 2. Pardy, who was a healthy scratch for Game 1, scored a highlight-reel goal for the Jets on Saturday. It also happened to be his first goal since 2011. "He should've slashed my tires and burned my house down for taking him out of the lineup based on the way he played," Maurice said. "He deserved to get back in. He played with a playoff intensity in that game, closed the gap, played hard."

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