Top 5: Players You Forgot Were Anaheim Ducks

When I say “Anaheim Ducks”, I’m sure some prominent players come to your mind. Ryan Getzlaf, Corey Perry, Scott Niedermayer, J.S. Giguere, Teemu Selanne, among others, But there were just as many players who flew under the radar as there were superstars that live on in history. Do you remember these Anaheim Ducks?

Number 5- Ken Klee

Ken Klee had become an established defenseman for the Washington Capitals through the late 1990’s and early 2000’s, where he played 604 games. He bounced around the league quite a bit during his later career, playing for the Maple Leafs, Devils, and Avalanche. In the summer of 2007, Klee signed a two-year deal with the Altanta Thrashers. Klee played one season in Atlanta before was dealt to the Anaheim Ducks right before the start of the 2008-09 season. One month after being acquired by the Ducks, he was claimed by the Phoenix Coyotes after just three games in Anaheim. Klee finished out the season with the Coyotes and retired in the summer of 2009.

Number 4- William Karlsson

Best known for his beautiful hair and leading the Golden Knights in points early in their existence, William Karlsson was once a Duck. After a successful run is Sweden, he was drafted 53rd overall by the Ducks in 2011. He made his NHL debut during the 2014-15 season playing in 18 games before being sent back down to the Norfolk Admirals to finish the year. At the 2015 NHL trade deadline, he was dealt to the Columbus Blue Jackets for defenseman James Wisniewski. After three lackluster years in Columbus he was picked by the Vegas Golden Knights in the expansion draft. Karlsson would later score 43 goals in Vegas’ inaugural season.

Number 3- Todd Bertuzzi

Bertuzzi is best known for a successful tenure with the Vancouver Canucks that was derailed in 2004 after a vicious sucker punch to Steve Moore, which saw him suspended and hit with assault charges. His reputation was ruined, and on ice, the Sedin twins were starting to break out as offensive forces, so there was no space for Bertuzzi in Vancouver anymore. In 2006 he was traded to the Florida Panthers where he played seven games before being dealt to the Red Wings for the remainder of the 2006-07 season. In the summer of 2007, Bertuzzi signed a two-year contract with the Anaheim Ducks. Brian Burke was the GM of the Ducks at the time, who was also the GM during part of Bertuzzi’s tenure in Vancouver. He played 68 games for the Ducks, recording 14 goals and 40 points. After playing just one year of his two year deal, he was put on unconditional waivers to buyout his contract to free up cap space so Anaheim could re-sign Corey Perry and Scott Niedermayer. Once free agency opened, Bertuzzi signed a one year contract with the Calgary Flames.

Number 2- Ray Emery

Emery signed a one-year contract with the Flyers in the summer of 2009, but only made it to December until an abdomen injury put him on the sidelines. In March, he was diagnosed with avascular necrosis, which kept him out the remainder of the season. He was able to overcome a grueling rehabilitation process and almost a year after his original diagnosis, in February 2011, he signed a contract with the Anaheim Ducks. He played five games with the Ducks AHL team in Syracuse before being recalled by the Ducks and making his NHL return one year after his diagnosis to a standing ovation. He played in 10 regular season games as well as five playoff games. He signed a contract with the Chicago Blackhawks in the offseason, ending his short tenure in Anaheim.

Number 1- Doug Weight

Doug Weight made his NHL debut in 1992 with the New York Rangers, and by 2007 he was one of the best American-born players of all time, making a name for himself playing for the Edmonton Oilers and the St. Louis Blues. He signed a two-year contract with the Blues in the summer of 2006, but with the Blues on course to miss the playoffs, Weight was traded to the Anaheim Ducks in exchange for Andy McDonald. He played 38 regular season games with the Ducks, along with five playoff games, but the Ducks were eliminated in the first round by the Dallas Stars. Following the season, he signed a one-year contract with the New York Islanders where he would play three seasons before retiring. Doug Weight finished his career with 278 goals and 1033 points in 1238 NHL games, which is good enough for sixth place amongst American-born players.

Honorable mentions

Radek Dvorak

Dvorak is probably best known for his two tenures with the Florida Panthers, but late in his career he bounced around the league quite a bit, including stints in Atlanta, Dallas, Carolina, and Anaheim. During the 2012-13 lockout he played in Switzerland, but came back late in the NHL season, signing a one-year contract with the Anaheim Ducks. He played in nine games, scoring four goals. In the summer of 2013, he signed a one-year contract with the Hurricanes which would be his last NHL season. Dvorak finished his career with 590 points in 1,260 games played.

Bret Hedican

After a 15-year NHL career, which included a Stanley Cup with Carolina in 2006, Hedican signed a one-year contract with the Anaheim Ducks in the summer of 2008. He played in 51 games, recording six points, and playing in his 1,000 NHL game. Before the start of the 2009 season he announced his retirement from the NHL.

 

By: Dan Esche (@DanTheFlyeraFan)

photo credit: anaheimcalling.com

 

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