SUN Hockey Pool

Andy ducks into St. Loo

STEVE MACFARLANE -- Sun Media

, Last Updated: 10:52 AM ET

ST. LOUIS -- From the sunny shores of Southern California to the winter blizzard in St. Louis, things have changed quickly for Andy McDonald.

Dealt from the Ducks to the Blues Friday for Doug Weight, a still-dazed McDonald admits he wondered about the weather when his ride arrived at the airport.

"Jay McKee picked me up last night. I asked him if the weather was like this all the time," said McDonald yesterday before the Blues lost 5-3 to the Calgary Flames at the Scottrade Center. "He told me this is the worst it's been in a long time. I'm from Canada, it's nothing new to me."

Almost everything else is new to the Strathroy, Ont., product, who spent his entire NHL career with the Ducks after signing as an undrafted free agent in the spring of 2000. He hasn't had a lot of time to digest his first trade, which comes at a bit of an awkward time for his family.

"It's the nature of the business. It's a little bit tough around Christmas time," said McDonald.

"It's about winning hockey games, and right now, that wasn't happening in Anaheim. Players knew there was going to be movement."

With the return of defenceman Scott Niedermayer, most of the speculation was a blueliner would be moved for space under the salary cap.

"I guess the key word there is speculation. You read the names in the paper," said McDonald. "It doesn't mean much because I guess (Ducks GM) Brian Burke only mentioned a few names that were untouchable, so everybody was kind of vulnerable to being traded.

"I guess I was a little surprised, but I knew it might have been a possiblity."

Still, the 30-year-old has had a rollercoaster 24 hours.

"At the start, when I found out on Friday, it was just kind of shock. Overwhelming. There's a lot of emotions going through you. That's kind of surpassed a little bit and you start thinking about your new team, and it's exciting to come here," said McDonald when asked if there was excitement in joining a team focused on speed and youth.

It's not like McDonald walked into a room full of strangers. He and McKee grew up together in Ontario, and Paul Kariya is a one-time linemate from Anaheim.

The two were reunited on a line last night.

"We did have some chemistry," said McDonald. "Hopefully, we can pick up a little bit where we left off."

The speed McDonald brings to the table is an exciting prospect for a team that sometimes struggles to score.


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