San Jose

Game Recap

Ducks 5, Sharks 2

Wednesday, 08.06.2014 / 1:49 AM

Associated Press

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Ducks 5, Sharks 2
Anaheim Ducks 5, San Jose Sharks 2

SAN JOSE, Calif. (AP) -From the slick no-look pass behind the net to the smart cross-ice feed during 4-on-4 play, Ryan Getzlaf constantly kept the Anaheim Ducks one pass ahead of San Jose.

Getzlaf's four-point performance earned him Anaheim's single-season assist record, and he also kept the Ducks on a roll that seems to have them headed straight back to the postseason.

Getzlaf set up goals by Bobby Ryan, Corey Perry and Teemu Selanne, and the Ducks dominated in the NHL's toughest road arena with a 5-2 victory over the league-leading Sharks on Saturday night.

Less than three minutes into the first leg of a home-and-home series between the longtime Pacific Division rivals, Getzlaf moved behind the net and instinctively flipped a pass back in the opposite direction, past Joe Thornton and straight to the stick of Ryan, who scored the first of his two goals.

"I never said anything," said Ryan, whose two goals included his 30th of the season, a new Ducks rookie record. "He has eyes on the back of his head, and he saw me."

The play was an early indication of the game's one-sided tenor - and of the urgency felt by the Ducks, who were in danger of falling out of the playoff race just two years after winning the Stanley Cup before embarking on a stellar streak of nine wins in 10 games.

"It's a situation where I know he's there," Getzlaf said of Ryan. "I may not know he's right beside the net, but I know he's back there somewhere, so I can throw it and trust that he's going to make the play on it."

Anaheim stayed in seventh place in the Western Conference, one point behind sixth-place Columbus and two ahead of Nashville and St. Louis with three games to play. The revitalized, veteran Ducks now are looming as a nightmare first-round matchup - perhaps for the Sharks, who had won three of four against their longtime rivals before Getzlaf, Ryan and Perry shredded their defense.

"They were flat-out dominant," Sharks coach Todd McLellan said of the Ducks' high-scoring line. "They were the top players in the game. We had last change, we could have matched anybody we wanted, but it wouldn't have mattered. They were playing that well."

Mike Brown also scored, and Jonas Hiller made 28 saves for Anaheim, which has scored 20 goals during a four-game winning streak. But the Ducks' offense revolved around Getzlaf, the playmaking center who increased his team-leading points total to 89 with a series of exceptional passes that gave him 10 assists in Anaheim's last five games.

He also surpassed Paul Kariya's 62-assist Anaheim record with 64 this season, while Ryan and Perry both reached 30 goals for the first time in their careers.

"I'm just not a big stats guy," Getzlaf said with a shrug.

Joe Thornton and Milan Michalek scored for the Sharks, whose lead over Boston for the league's best record stands at one point with four games to play. Evgeni Nabokov stopped 23 shots, but San Jose lost at home in regulation for just the fourth time all season.

With just eight days left in the regular season, San Jose began a five-game sprint to the finish with an unimpressive effort while missing injured captain Patrick Marleau and forwards Ryane Clowe and Mike Grier. The Sharks are six points in front of Detroit for the conference lead, but they're barely ahead of the Bruins in their chase of the franchise's first Presidents' Trophy.

"Our transition game wasn't very good, our passing wasn't good, and that sets up turnovers," forward Jeremy Roenick said. "We weren't very good, and we were playing against a determined team that's fighting for its playoff lives. We can't have games like this. It's unacceptable."

San Jose's NHL-best home record slipped to 31-4-4 with the loss, which also snapped a three-game winning streak. The Sharks' 4-1 loss to Dallas on March 3 was their only other three-goal defeat at home this season.

After Ryan put the Ducks ahead early, Perry got his 30th goal three minutes later on another setup from Getzlaf.

Thornton pulled the Sharks back with his 25th goal, and Michalek tied it early in the second period with a power play tally, but Brown quickly put the Ducks back ahead on a shot that was going wide before it hit the stick of Sharks center Tomas Plihal and sneaked inside the post. Selanne added his 26th goal on another sharp pass from Getzlaf when both clubs were short-handed late in the second.

Ryan added a power play goal late in the third period, giving him 30, which broke Dustin Penner's previous franchise rookie goals record.

The mini-series concludes Sunday night at Honda Center, where San Jose beat Anaheim 1-0 on March 15 on a goal by Travis Moen, who was traded from the Ducks to the Sharks at the deadline. Kent Huskins, the defenseman also sent to San Jose in the deal, still hasn't played for the Sharks while recovering from foot surgery, but is practicing in hopes of a late-season appearance.

Notes: The 24-year-old Perry finished with 29 goals last season. ... On Michalek's goal, Nabokov picked up an assist, his first of the season.

scoring summary
1st Period
Bobby Ryan (29) ASST: Ryan Getzlaf (61), Corey Perry (39)
1 - 0 ANA
Corey Perry (30) ASST: Ryan Getzlaf (62), Chris Pronger (37)
2 - 0 ANA
Joe Thornton (25) ASST: Dan Boyle (39)
2 - 1 ANA
2nd Period
PPG - Milan Michalek (23) ASST: Christian Ehrhoff (31), Evgeni Nabokov (1)
2 - 2 Tie
Mike Brown (2) ASST: Erik Christensen (20)
3 - 2 ANA
Teemu Selanne (26) ASST: Ryan Getzlaf (63)
4 - 2 ANA
3rd Period
PPG - Bobby Ryan (30) ASST: Erik Christensen (21), Ryan Getzlaf (64)
5 - 2 ANA
penalty summary
1st Period
Rob Niedermayer  Elbowing against  Marcel Goc
2nd Period
Ryan Whitney  Interference against  Brad Staubitz
Brendan Mikkelson  Roughing against  Milan Michalek
Milan Michalek  Roughing against  Brendan Mikkelson
3rd Period
Rob Blake  Hooking against  Teemu Selanne
Chris Pronger  Interference against  Jonathan Cheechoo
goalie stats
Jonas Hiller
Jonas Hiller
SA: 30TOI: 60:00
Saves: 28EV: 23 - 24
PIM: 0PP: 5 - 6
SV%: .933SH: 0 - 0
Evgeni Nabokov
Evgeni Nabokov
SA: 28TOI: 59:44
Saves: 23EV: 22 - 26
PIM: 0PP: 1 - 2
SV%: .821SH: 0 - 0 is the official Web site of the Anaheim Ducks. Anaheim Ducks and are trademarks of Anaheim Ducks Hockey Club, LLC. NHL, the NHL Shield, the word mark and image of the Stanley Cup and NHL Conference logos are registered trademarks of the National Hockey League. All NHL logos and marks and NHL team logos and marks as well as all other proprietary materials depicted herein are the property of the NHL and the respective NHL teams and may not be reproduced without the prior written consent of NHL Enterprises, L.P. Copyright © 1999-2015 Anaheim Ducks Hockey Club, LLC and the National Hockey League. All Rights Reserved.