|ANA||0||0||0||(0 - 0)||4|
|LAK||0||0||0||(0 - 0)||3|
While the Anaheim Ducks are the league's best team, Teemu Selanne is making a strong case as the league's best player.
The red-hot Selanne will try to lead the Ducks to a sweep of their home-and-home series with the Los Angeles Kings when the teams meet at the Honda Center on Sunday.
With a 4-3 win on Saturday, Anaheim (20-2-6) extended its winning streak in the series to seven games. Given how Selanne is playing, the Ducks may have an easy time extending it further.
Selanne had two goals and an assist as the Ducks took a four-goal lead early in the third period before holding on for their third win of the season over their Southern California rivals.
Since the Ducks lost in regulation for the first time this season on Nov. 10, Selanne has tallied nine goals and 10 assists in 11 games, including a five-assist effort in a Nov. 19 win over Phoenix.
"I don't think I've tried to change anything. I just try to make the right decision at the right time, when it's time to shoot or pass," Selanne said Saturday. "When you play with great players, you get great passes."
Anaheim has gone 8-1-2 during Selanne's hot streak and leads the league with 46 points, four more than Buffalo. The Ducks also became the first team in the NHL to reach 100 goals this season.
Travis Moen added a goal and an assist and Andy McDonald chipped in two assists Saturday for the Ducks, who will look for a more complete effort from goaltender Jean-Sebastien Giguere should he start again.
Giguere stopped all 25 shots he faced over the first two periods, but gave up third-period goals to Scott Thornton, Rob Blake and Dustin Brown - the final two coming in the last 1:50 of the contest.
"You never want to criticize a win, but we had a little letdown and there were some things we feel we maybe let slip a little bit," Ducks defenseman Sean O'Donnell said. "We made a couple of mistakes on some clears, and they got two.
"I was on for both those goals, and I don't think we were mentally strong enough there."
Despite the poor third period, Giguere finished with 38 saves en route to winning his fourth straight start and recorded his league-best 16th win overall. He's won three home starts in a row since allowing a season high-tying five goals in a 7-4 loss to Philadelphia on Nov. 15.
Should backup Ilya Bryzgalov start for coach Randy Carlyle, he will try to win for the first time in a month. Since beating the Coyotes on Nov. 3, Bryzgalov is 0-1-1 with a 3.57 goals-against average in two starts. He was 2-1-0 with a 2.65 GAA in three starts against the Kings (9-15-4) last season.
Los Angeles coach Mark Crawford said his team - which trails Anaheim by 24 points in the Pacific Division - needs to play smarter.
"These are our cross-town rivals," he said. "These guys are the kings of the castle right now, and they're on top of the heap. We have to play with a lot of emotion in order to beat them tomorrow, or anytime."
Lubomir Visnovsky assisted on the Kings' final two goals Saturday. The defenseman has a goal and four assists in a four-game points streak.
|Mar 18 '07||LAK 5 at ANA 3||P. O'Sullivan|
|Mar 01 '07||ANA 3 at LAK 4 - OT||M. Cammalleri|
|Feb 18 '07||LAK 4 at ANA 3 - SO||L. Visnovsky|
|Feb 17 '07||ANA 3 at LAK 2 - SO||C. Perry|
|Dec 03 '06||LAK 3 at ANA 2||A. Frolov|
|Dec 02 '06||ANA 4 at LAK 3||T. Selanne|
|Oct 22 '06||ANA 3 at LAK 2 - SO||R. Getzlaf|
|Oct 06 '06||LAK 3 at ANA 4||C. Kunitz|