NHL Team Capsules

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PLAYER TO WATCH: Smyth. After a tearful farewell four years ago when he was traded to the New York Islanders after he and the Oilers couldn’t reach a new contract, Smyth has found his way back to Edmonton. He isn’t quite the scorer and force in front of the net he once was, but Smyth still can provide offense and loads of leadership to a young squad.



LAST SEASON: 48-25-9, 105 points. Lost to Vancouver 4-1 in conference finals.

COACH: Todd McLellan, 4th season with Sharks, 152-63-31; 4th overall in NHL.

ADDED: D Brent Burns, C Michal Handzus, D Jim Vandermeer, RW Martin Havlat, C Andrew Murray, D Colin White, C James Sheppard.

LOST: RW Dany Heatley, RW Devin Setoguchi, D Niclas Wallin, C Scott Nichol, D Kent Huskins, D Ian White, LW Ben Eager, RW Jamal Mayers, C Kyle Wellwood.

PLAYER TO WATCH: Burns. The Sharks’ defense was already strong with Dan Boyle, who had 50 points last season, but the addition of the All-Star Burns could be the difference come playoff time.


LAST SEASON: 47-30-5, 99 points. Lost to Nashville 4-2 in first round.

COACH: Randy Carlyle, 7th season with Ducks, 266-169-57; 7th overall in NHL.

ADDED: D Kurtis Foster, RW Andrew Gordon, D Bryan Rodney, LW Jean-Francois Jacques, C Andrew Cogliano, G Jeff Deslauriers, D Matt Smaby, C Mark Bell.

LOST: C Todd Marchant, D Andy Sutton, D Andreas Lilja, C Kyle Chipchura, G Ray Emery, LW Jarkko Ruutu, LW Brad Winchester.

PLAYER TO WATCH: Corey Perry. The forward busted out last season with 50 goals - 18 more than his previous best in the NHL - that earned him the Hart Trophy as NHL MVP. Another season like that could be enough to propel the Ducks much further in the playoffs.


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