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Hard to find the right complement to Ryan Getzlaf and Corey Perry

Corey Perry, left, and Ryan Getzlaf are great together, but finding someone who complements the duo has been tough. Derek Leung/Getty Images

ANAHEIM, Calif. -- Bobby Ryan. Dustin Penner. Dany Heatley. Kyle Palmieri. Devante Smith-Pelly. Matt Beleskey. Patrick Maroon.

Heck, even Teemu Selanne got a taste for a few games.

We're leaving out a bunch of other names who have skated alongside Ryan Getzlaf and Corey Perry on the Anaheim Ducks' top line the past few seasons, but you get the point.

One would think it would be a plum job to play with those two stars, but for whatever reason, it's been a revolving door for years, with no one nailing down the job long-term.

"I've given up on it," Getzlaf said with a laugh over the weekend during a break in Ducks camp.

That's not a criticism of the players who have taken a stab at it. It's more an indication by Getzlaf that he and Perry seem to be a tough pair to play with.

"Finding three guys that play well together every single night is tough to find," Getzlaf said. "I think when you're talking about playing that role, it's a tough one to get into because we're counted on to do things every single night. And when things aren't going our way, that [third] guy tends to change."

Ducks coach Bruce Boudreau and his predecessor, Randy Carlyle, have had the same issue.

"I don't think it's the question of trying to find somebody," Boudreau said Sunday. "They play so well together that the other guy is always forgotten, the third wheel. I mean, those two guys have played together 10 years. When they play for Canada, they play on a line there. So they're a hard duo to break up.

"Whoever ends up on that line often tries to force the puck to those guys. If they play their own game, that's when it works. But when they try to force the puck to Getzy or Perry, then it becomes a bit of a problem."

As Boudreau pointed out, Maroon did play well with them at times last season, certainly as well as anyone has in a while.

"Most importantly, you just have to play your game," Maroon said Monday at Ducks camp. "You can't tense up or be nervous. Because if you do that, you're not playing your game. Stay within your game. If you play your game, you should be OK. You can't always worry what they're doing with the puck."

Still, the job is open again this season.

Maroon will no doubt get another look, but the likes of Chris Stewart, Jiri Sekac or Carl Hagelin will, too. Or will it be someone else?

Stewart seems like an obvious guy to try there.

"I mean, it would make things a lot easier for me, that's for sure," Stewart said on Monday. "To play with those guys, I think they need a worker, a guy that can forecheck, create turnovers and get them the puck and get to the net. That's kind of my game in a nutshell. If I get the opportunity, I'm going to try and make the most of it."

One player who has found chemistry with Getzlaf and Perry is Dallas Stars captain Jamie Benn. Of course, last we heard, he isn't available in a trade. Benn combined with the Ducks duo on the "Big Boy" line for Team Canada at the 2014 Olympics, and they were fun to watch.

"It started a few years ago at a world championship, where the three of us got thrown together," Benn said over the phone from Dallas on Monday. "The three of us kind of play the same style. We're three big guys who like to control the puck, like to cycle the puck, I think that's why we had some success at the Olympics because we were all on the same page and we can read off each other. We just play the same game."

But as Benn points out, the NHL is a league in which coaches focus on forward pairings, not so much trios, and what the Ducks have gone through trying to find a fit for Perry and Getzlaf is something a lot of teams go through. Benn said the same thing has happened in Dallas in terms of finding a player to fill out a line with him and Tyler Seguin.

And it's the same on many teams.

"I kind of look at them like the Sedins," said Ducks center and Ryan Kesler, once a teammate of twins Henrik Sedin and Daniel Sedin on the Vancouver Canucks. "It took a while in Vancouver to find a fit. It seemed like every year there was a different guy. Then [Alex Burrows] stepped in for a little bit.

"But I think you just have to know how to play the game when you play with guys like that. You have to be really smart to play with those two and find the open areas. Because, obviously, Getzy is looking for Perry all the time. You have to do the dirty work and be a smart hockey player. It's hard to find."

In the meantime, it should be noted that a few days into Ducks camp, Perry and Getzlaf have, in fact, not even been a tandem. Which is not something fans are used to seeing in these parts.

"Everybody is assuming that those two are going to play together all the time," Ducks GM Bob Murray said on Monday. "Wouldn't it be interesting if we could balance out our lineup a little bit with Getzy's line, Kesler's line and Corey on another line? It would give the other coach something to think about.

"I'm not saying we're going to do that, but it's a thought."

Perry and Getzlaf on different lines? One can see the merit in the idea of balancing out the offense. But, man, those two are just so good together.

I'll give it two games at most. I'm kidding. Kind of.

"Yeah, I could put them back together tonight, tomorrow or in two weeks and they know exactly where each other is," Boudreau said of his dynamic duo. "So let's experiment finding out what everyone else can do. And we'll take it from there."