With the Pacific Division and the conference in general as competitive as ever, here are six questions facing the Ducks heading into the 2012-13 season:
1. What will Bruce Boudreau be able to achieve in his first full season in Anaheim?
When he was hired Dec. 1, the Ducks found themselves in a sorry state of affairs with a 7-13-4 record. It would get worse before it got better, as they won just three of their first 14 games under Boudreau before going 24-14-6 the rest of the way.
Although he couldn't pull off the miracle comeback he did when he first became an NHL coach in Washington, leading the Capitals back from last place in the Eastern Conference to the first of four consecutive Southeast Division titles in 2007-08, Boudreau re-energized the Ducks -- most notably Hiller and the team's defensive efforts in front of him -- and created expectations of better things to come.