|DAL||0||0||0||(0 - 0)||5|
|ANA||0||0||0||(0 - 0)||2|
ANAHEIM – Unfortunately for the Anaheim Ducks, some things never change.
The Dallas Stars team that owned the Ducks last year and eliminated Anaheim from the Stanley Cup Playoffs came into this game struggling mightily with a 4-6-2 record and a league-worst 50 goals against. But that hardly showed as they dominated Anaheim on both ends of the ice en route to a 5-2 whitewashing at Honda Center.
"We got away from our game of just the hard work, the skating and the simple things," said Ducks captain Scott Niedermayer. "They came out and did those things. They had us back a little bit and got those early goals. When you’re playing against a team that is pretty determined defensively like they were, it’s tough to turn it around. We tried, but we weren’t able to do it."
|Scott Niedermayer and the Ducks dropped their first game in regulation in the last 10, as they continued to have trouble with Dallas.
The Stars went 5-3-0 against the Ducks last regular season and eliminated them in six games in the first round of the postseason, so Anaheim was looking for revenge. And they came into the game with the opposite fortunes as the Stars, having won eight of their last nine. But the Ducks looked sluggish for much of the game and a Mark Parrish hat trick in his Stars debut helped do them in, handing the Ducks their first regulation loss in 10 games.
"They were playing hard," Niedermayer said. "They were a team that was hungry for the points tonight, probably hungrier than we were. I think that showed. All those things that happened out there, I think they deserved to win."
The Stars blew ahead of the Ducks in the second period, thanks to the second and third goals of the game for the 31-year-old Parrish. The right winger, who had 16 goals last year for Minnesota, was a free agent up until last Wednesday, when the Stars signed him for a salary of just $500,000.
Parrish put the Stars up 3-1 with a power play goal 1:13 into the period, as he took in a bouncing puck in the slot and quickly chipped it past Giguere. A few minutes later, Scott Niedermayer was holding the puck alone at the Ducks’ blueline when he inexplicably fell to the ice. Parrish scooped up the puck, and with only Giguere to beat, he sent a wrist shot past him.
"I knocked it down, it went into my feet and I just stepped right on it," Niedermayer said. "Things like that do happen in a hockey game. We were already behind the eight ball."
That sent Giguere to the bench for backup Jonas Hiller, the second time Giguere has been pulled mid-game in the last four. He was removed last Friday in a 7-6 shootout loss to Vancouver at Honda Center
Parrish had given the Stars a 2-0 lead when he followed a Fabian Brunnstrom goal with another strike halfway through the period on the power play. Sean Avery went behind the net to pick up the puck and sent it backwards to a waiting Parrish, who batted it home.
The Ducks were able to cut that lead in half with 2:32 left in the period, as Brendan Morrison finally found the net for the first time this season. Ryan Carter’s shot from between the circles was saved by Dallas netminder Marty Turco, but it snuck underneath him. He tried to turn around and freeze the puck, but Morrison jabbed at it repeatedly before sending it through.
"It was pretty much laying there," Morrison said. "It’s not the kind of one that you dream about, but a goal is a goal. Right now, we’ll take them any way we can get them. It’s always nice to contribute. The last three games it feels like it’s starting to come, so hopefully it’s a sign. The goal is to get better each and every night."
|One positive for the Ducks was Brendan Morrison (far left) scoring his first goal as a Duck in the first period.
Teemu Selanne, who started the play by getting the puck away from Turco in the corner, earned an assist for his 370th as a Duck. That broke him out of a tie with Paul Kariya for the Ducks record.
Turco, who entered the game having struggled just as much as the rest of the Stars with just three wins and a goals-against average of 4.34, had 28 saves. The Ducks actually outshot the Stars, 30-26.
The game got out of hand for Anaheim when a Steve Ott shot trickled behind Hiller and Brad Richards dove to help it in as it was heading for the stripe.
The Ducks did manage to score one later in the period on the power play, when Scott Niedermayer got his stick on a Chris Pronger slap shot and tipped it past Turco.
Anaheim had heavyweight George Parros in the lineup for the first time since suffering a scratched cornea last Friday against Vancouver. Parros skated with a protective visor for the first time and played 7:41.
"We didn’t have a very good effort tonight all around," Morrison said. "I don’t think they played exceptionally well. I just don’t think that we were as sharp as we needed to be. We knew they were a desperate team coming in and they were a little bit fragile, but they did what they had to do to win. We didn’t do enough. Now, the key here is to see how quickly we can rebound. That is the sign of a good team is to bounce back right away."
The Ducks look to get back on track Sunday when they take on Florida at Honda Center.
|Fabian Brunnstrom (6) ASST: Mike Ribeiro (12), Brenden Morrow (9)|
1 - 0 DAL
|PPG - Mark Parrish (1) ASST: Sean Avery (6), Philippe Boucher (2)|
2 - 0 DAL
|Brendan Morrison (1) ASST: Ryan Carter (4), Teemu Selanne (6)|
2 - 1 DAL
|PPG - Mark Parrish (2) ASST: Mike Ribeiro (13), Brad Richards (6)|
3 - 1 DAL
|Mark Parrish (3) ASST: NONE|
4 - 1 DAL
|Brad Richards (4) ASST: Steve Ott (2), Trevor Daley (3)|
5 - 1 DAL
|PPG - Scott Niedermayer (2) ASST: Chris Pronger (10), Ryan Getzlaf (13)|
5 - 2 DAL
|Travis Moen Elbowing against Nicklas Grossmann|
|Chris Kunitz Roughing against Trevor Daley|
|Trevor Daley Roughing against Chris Kunitz|
|Chris Kunitz Boarding against Sean Avery|
|Brian Sutherby Fighting (maj) against Philippe Boucher|
|Philippe Boucher Fighting (maj) against Brian Sutherby|
|Stephane Robidas Interference against Ryan Getzlaf|
|Samuel Pahlsson Roughing against Brenden Morrow|
|Chris Pronger Roughing against Steve Ott|
|Steve Ott Roughing against Chris Pronger|
|Mark Parrish Too many men/ice - bench|
|Mike Modano Hi-sticking against Samuel Pahlsson|
|Corey Perry Interference against Brad Richards|
|Mike Modano Delaying Game-Puck over glass|
|Corey Perry Cross checking against Stephane Robidas|
|Nicklas Grossmann Holding against George Parros|
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