Ducks Cap Dramatic Comeback with Shootout Victory
Over Red Wings, 4-3
By Adam Brady
ANAHEIM – The Ducks and Red Wings don’t see each other as often as they once did, but tonight they provided yet another classic chapter in their once-intense rivalry.
A dramatic Ducks comeback in the third period ultimately led to a triumphant shootout and a thrilling 4-3 victory over Detroit in front of a sellout crowd of 17,174 at Honda Center.
Down two goals and struggling to get shots on net, the Ducks exploded for three unanswered goals in a span of 3 minutes, 40 seconds in the middle of the third period to seize the lead. But the Red Wings sent it to overtime on a Riley Sheahan goal with 3:51 left in regulation.
In the shootout, Corey Perry and Jakob Silfverberg each found the net while John Gibson (in his first career shootout) stopped Pavel Datsyuk in the first round and Tomas Tatar in the third to seal the victory and ignite the home crowd.
"Down 2-0 going into the third, we didn’t quit. We kept going," said Francois Beauchemin, who had the go-ahead goal in the third. "They did a good job the first two periods of keeping shots down and blocking shots. We couldn’t find a way to get shots through, and finally in the third we did and it paid off."
The Ducks-Red Wings rivalry isn’t renewed as frequently as it was in the past, since Detroit moved to the Eastern Conference last season. But tonight was still a physical battle that left the Ducks with little room to operate before that flurry in the third.
After managing just three shots in the second period, the Ducks didn’t get on the board until 10:43 remained in the third, as Hampus Lindholm’s shot bounced off goalie Jimmy Howard’s chest, and Andrew Cogliano swept in the rebound with the backhand. It was the fourth goal in the last five games for Cogliano, play his NHL-best 601st straight game tonight.
"I thought it turned when we didn’t panic getting down two," Cogliano said. "We learned our lesson in terms of times during the season when we’ve gone down two or three and lost our composure and taken penalties trying to win the game in five minutes. I thought tonight we stuck to the gameplan and kept forcing them, putting more pressure on them. You get one and you start feeling good, the crowd gets into it and you get a couple more."
Anaheim tied it two minutes after Cogliano's goal off another fat rebound off a Clayton Stoner shot, as Emerson Etem pounced on it in the low slot and rolled it under Howard.
"It was a great job by Stoney there, and I was just able to follow it up," Etem said. "It kind of had a wicked bounce, and I was just able to slide it through."
Another minute and a half later, the Ducks went in front, as Ryan Getzlaf forced his way to the net and slipped the puck back to Beauchemin, who hammered a one-timer that got through traffic and touched the twine.
"We were just sticking with it," Beauchemin said. "In the third, we came out a little more aggressive, keeping pucks in the zone, working the walls and getting pucks through. And we got a couple rebound goals. I thought we responded the right way in the third. Gibby [John Gibson] was really good all night and gave us a chance to win."
Detroit tied it back up with just under four minutes to go when Anaheim got caught on a bad change, and Gustav Nyquist sent a cross-ice pass to a wide open Sheahan, who buried the one-timer.
Before that third period, the game belonged to Detroit and, more to the point, Pavel Datsyuk. The Russian center struck 3:54 into the second off a Ducks turnover, sniping a shot from the left wing circle into the far top corner, his first of two tallies on the night.
Detroit made it 2-0 later in the period, taking quick advantage of a Pat Maroon penalty, as Datsyuk took in the puck down low and backhanded it around Gibson. It continued a trend for Datsyuk vs. Anaheim, as he's racked up 18 goals and 41 points in 40 career games against the Ducks.
"A lot of times this year, you get down two like that and all of a sudden things unravel and you’re down three and we’re getting mad," said Ducks coach Bruce Boudreau. We stayed within striking distance of a team that was outplaying us the first two periods. In the third period when you’re getting outplayed, you get that goal and you get some emotion in the game. We got that second one and third one, and I think we had a bad change on their tying goal. We got lucky and won it."
It was a third straight victory for the Ducks and a sweep of the season series vs. Detroit after a 3-2 victory in Detroit way back in October.