Player Preview: Corey Perry
As we approach training camp and the start of the 2014-15 season, AnaheimDucks.com will preview each player on the roster, highlighting last season’s accomplishments and providing insight into what you can expect this season. Our preview continues with Corey Perry.
“Scorey” Perry wasn’t just a nickname for Anaheim’s talented right winger this season.
It was almost a mission statement for the 29-year old forward, who finished the 2013-14 campaign with 82 points and a career-high plus-32 rating. Perry led the league in even-strength goals (35) and finished second to Washington’s Alexander Ovechkin in the Maurice “Rocket” Richard Trophy race with 43 goals. Those two were the only players to crack 40 goals, a testament to Perry’s goal-scoring prowess.
Along with those gaudy goal totals, he finished tied for third in game-winning goals (9), fifth in points (82) and tied for seventh in plus/minus. His 39 assists were good for second on the team while his eight power-play goals led the Ducks.
He also had a flair for the dramatic, scoring plenty of late goals. Perhaps the best one came against the Vancouver Canucks on January 5 at Honda Center. The game-winning tally came at 4:58 of overtime and was the latest OT winner by a Duck since Nov. 17, 1995 when Peter Douris scored with one second remaining in a 2-1 win against the New York Islanders. He also played a huge role in the epic comeback win against the Winnipeg Jets on March 31 (also at Honda Center), scoring the game-tying goal with just 23 seconds remaining in regulation.
Perry carried his regular season play into the postseason, where he recorded 11 points (4g/7a) in 13 games. He ranked second on the team in scoring and assists, and tied for second in goals. Perry also surpassed Teemu Selanne (33) for second on the club’s all-time postseason assist list (34) in Game 4 of the Second Round series against the Los Angeles Kings.
The Second Round loss to their bitter rivals left a bitter taste in Perry’s mouth.
“When your season comes to a screeching halt, it’s hard,” he said during exit interviews. “You sit there and reflect on everything you experienced and went through. There were a lot of emotions this year.
“We have the same feeling we had last year. We could see the end of the tunnel, but we just couldn’t get there.”
Much of the offense will again fall on the shoulders of “The Twins,” Perry and linemate Ryan Getzlaf, as the Ducks look to replicate last year’s success. He ranks third in the NHL in goals with 203 tallies since the start of 2008-09, spanning six seasons, trailing only Ovechkin and Tampa Bay’s Steven Stamkos. Expect more late thrillers from Perry this season. Since the start of 2010-11, Perry leads the NHL with 31 game-winning goals.
You know what’s coming – Perry’s goal from his knees against the New York Islanders stands as one of the best goals across the league from last season. Perry stepped out from the penalty box with less than 10 seconds remaining in the second period, following Daniel Winnik into the offensive zone. He took a drop pass and immediately drove to the slot, forcing Islanders defenseman Calvin de Haan to trip him. Sliding on his knees, Perry flicked a wrister into traffic that beat Anders Nilsson with just over two seconds remaining.
That goal won the Ducks Fan Awards Goal of the Year, as voted by the fans.
BY THE NUMBERS
35: The number of even-strength goals Perry scored last season to lead the league.
31: The number of game-winning goals Perry scored since the 2010-11 season. That number leads the league.
4:58: Perry’s game-winning overtime tally against the Vancouver Canucks on January 5 was the latest OT winner by a Duck since Nov. 17, 1995 when Peter Douris scored with one second remaining in a 2-1 win vs. NYI.