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Wednesday, February 5, 2014

Fistric on IR, Ducks recall Vatenen

By on 2/05/2014 12:09:00 PM

The Anaheim Ducks have placed defenseman Mark Fistric on the Injured Reserved list with a Lower-Body Injury.

The blue-collar Fistric will be on the list until the Olympic break has concluded, a blow to a guy that just six days ago Ducks' coach Bruce Boudreau had heaped a ton of praise on while clearing the way for the under-achieving Luca Sbisa to return from a torn tendon in his hand.

"It isn’t like a normal year when he’d be a guy where you’d pencil in right now," Boudreau said to beat writers last Wednesday when Sbisa was activated. "We’re playing pretty good. I think we’re pretty good defensively most nights. He’s (Sbisa) not coming in to get anointed. He’s going to have earn a spot there as Mark Fistric earned a spot. Sat out 10 games in a row earlier on in the year, (now) he's earned his place."
Photo credit: Mark J. Terrill/AP

Sbisa was in the lineup just hours later, perhaps just to showcase the talented blue liner as the trade deadline nears - because later that evening the team announced that they had locked up the heavily sought after free agent to a three year deal on the cheap, paying him in three years what Sbisa makes in one.

As for Fistric on the ice, Boudreau is not taking any chances with his newly signed heavyweight.

"We have extras," Boudreau said. "There's no sense rushing anybody. He's had an injury like this in the past. From what I heard yesterday, he just wrapped it and went back out and ended up really hurting himself. So we don't want that to happen."

There are many silver linings associated with the timing of the injury - if there is such a thing - the most obvious being that Fistric has time to rest and heal during the two-week break, and also that the team can again call up the dynamic young Sami Vatenen from AHL Norfolk.

An offensive-minded defenseman, Vatenen scored six goals and had 14 points in the 39 games he played for the parent club, numbers that ranked 1st and 3rd, respectively, for the Ducks' blue liners.


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