Brandon Montour got his NHL start with the Ducks when they drafted him in to the second round of the 2014 draft. It appears he will restart things with the Florida Panthers tonight when they visit Anaheim.
Montour has missed Florida’s first 16 games due after having surgery to repair a torn labrum in June.
He was activated off injured reserve in time for tonight’s game.
Oh, and Aaron Ekblad was activated as well.
The Panthers are going to look a lot different tonight in Anaheim against the surprising Ducks.
Florida also recalled Jonah Gadjovich from his rehabilitation assignment in the American Hockey League and he could make his debut with the Panthers as well.
To make room on the roster for Ekblad, the Panthers placed Josh Mahura on IR after he took a big hit along the boards in Los Angeles on Thursday.
Mahura briefly returned for the second period but left the game.
Tonight will be the first game Mahura has missed since being claimed off waivers from Anaheim prior to the start of last season.
As for tonight’s starting goalies, the Ducks are expected to go back to John Gibson after Lukas Dostal gave up eight in their loss in Colorado on Wednesday.
Florida was believed to be leaning toward giving Anthony Stolarz a second start on this trip, but Paul Maurice’s comments following Thursday’s loss in Los Angeles may hint toward Sergei Bobrovsky getting back in.
Bobrovsky, as Maurice noted, saw a lot of action early Thursday but just nine shots in the third.
The Panthers did not have a morning skate on Friday; Maurice will speak to the media around 7:45 local time.
UPDATE: Maurice said that Stolarz would get his fourth start of the season and that Gadjovich would be in the lineup.
DUCKS ON A POND
The Ducks are one of the more pleasant surprises in the NHL this season as they ended up with the second-worst record in the league last year but come into tonight tied for the top wild-card position in the west.
Anaheim and Arizona — another fun story — both have 18 points.
The Ducks had a six-game winning streak not too long ago but come into tonight’s game with three losses in their past five.
A couple of former Panthers are leading the Ducks this season with Frank Vatrano having 11 goals and 16 points; Radko Gudas, playing 18:35 a game has also quickly become a fan favorite in Anaheim.
The Ducks having so much on-ice success this season may be a surprise. Gudas being popular among his fan base is not.
PANTHERS ON DECK
FLORIDA PANTHERS @ ANAHEIM DUCKS
- When: Friday, 10 p.m.
- Where: Honda Center, Anaheim
- TV/Streaming: Bally Sports Florida, ESPN+
- Radio: WQAM 560-AM; WBZT 1230-AM (Palm Beach); WCTH 100.3-FM (Florida Keys); SiriusXM
- Panthers Radio Streaming: SiriusXM 932, NHL App
- Local Odds — Panthers Favored: Money Line (-165); Puck line (-1.5, +135); Over/Under 6.5 (-135/+110)
- This Season: @Anaheim, Friday; @Florida, Jan. 15
- Last season: Florida won 2-0
- All-time regular season series: Florida leads 21-14-2, 3 ties
- Up Next for the Panthers: Monday vs. Edmonton, 7 p.m.
PROJECTED FLORIDA PANTHERS (10-5-1) LINES
17 Evan Rodrigues // 16 Sasha Barkov // 13 Sam Reinhart
23 Carter Verhaeghe // 9 Sam Bennett // 19 Matthew Tkachuk
27 Eetu Luostarinen // 15 Anton Lundell// 21 Nick Cousins
94 Ryan Lomberg // 68 Kevin Stenlund // 12 Jonah Gadjovich
42 Gus Forsling // 5 Aaron Ekblad
91 Oliver Ekman-Larsson // 62 Brandon Montour
77 Niko Mikkola // 7 Dmitry Kulikov
41 Anthony Stolarz
72 Sergei Bobrovsky
Scratched: Mike Reilly, Steven Lorentz, Uvis Balinskis
Injured: Josh Mahura (UBI-IR)
PROJECTED ANAHEIM DUCKS (9-7-0) LINES
17 Alex Killorn // 91 Leo Carlsson // 19 Troy Terry
77 Frank Vatrano // 23 Mason McTavish // 16 Ryan Strome
49 Max Jones // 14 Adam Henrique // 33 Jakob Silfverberg
24 Bo Groulx // 39 Sam Carrick // 20 Brett Leason
4 Cam Fowler // 60 Jackson LaCombe
34 Pavel Mintyukov // 46 Ilya Lyubushkin
5 Urho Vaakanainen // 7 Radko Gudas
36 John Gibson
1 Lukas Dostal
Scratched: Ross Johnson
Injured: Jamie Drysdale (LBI), Brock McGinn (LBI), Isac Lundestrom (Achilles), Trevor Zegras (LBI)