By Adam Brady (email@example.com)
ANAHEIM – Not pleased with his performance in a loss two nights earlier, Jonas Hiller
was the goalie the Ducks need him to be tonight against Nashville.
Hiller had 40 stops in pitching his first shutout of the year, and was given some breathing room by the Ducks scorers (including a two-goal game from Teemu Selanne
) as they rolled to a 4-0 victory over the Predators at Nashville.
|Hiller had 40 saves in his first shutout of the season, and got some insurance from his teammates in the third.
Hiller gave up four goals, including two in a pivotal third period, in a 4-3 loss to Pittsburgh here on Tuesday night, but this evening he was flawless in helping the Ducks break out of a funk that had seen them drop six of their last seven.
"We played pretty solid defensively," Hiller said. "I gave up a couple of rebounds, but our defensemen were doing a great job tonight clearing those. I’m definitely happy about the win. If we play the way we did tonight, we’ll always have a chance to win."
The Ducks needed all of his saves in the first two periods, when a Selanne power play strike was the extent of the scoring for both teams. But Selanne’s second of the game in the third, followed by Todd Marchant
’s first of the season and Bobby Ryan
’s fifth, allowed the Ducks to pull away and turn it into a rout.
"We have to start building the confidence from little things," Selanne said. "This team can play way better than we did. The good thing is we found a way to win the game and that is all that really matters. Jonas gave us a chance to win and the special teams were good."
Selanne and Marchant lit the lamp within a span of 106 seconds, as Selanne struck first on a pretty feed from linemate and countrymate Saku Koivu
. After Selanne set up Koivu on the rush, Koivu gave it back to Selanne in the slot, where he smacked a one-timer home.
"We have had some really good games and so many good chances, but the puck has not gone in," Selanne said of his play with Koivu. "It’s a little frustrating. We have been playing well, but have not been rewarded. I really hope tonight’s game is going to give us the confidence boost we need."
Marchant also connected on a one-timer in front of the net, as Petteri Nokelainen stole the puck from Francis Bouillon and fed a wide-open Marchant
As Hiller stood strong and ensured there would be no late Nashville charge, Ryan put the game away on a goal following a rush in which all three members of the top line contributed. Ryan Getzlaf
bumped the puck off the wall to Corey Perry
, who backhanded a pass to Ryan for the one-timer.
With the win, the Ducks continued their dominance over the Predators at home, improving to 13-0-3 in their last 16 games at Honda Center.
"It was a nip and tuck game until the third period," said Ducks coach Randy Carlyle. "We found a way to score some goals in third period to give us some breathing room."
After Selanne provided the only scoring in the first 40 minutes – on a power play connection with 4:28 left in the first – the Ducks put a little pressure on themselves with three Nashville power plays in the second. A fourth penalty, for roughing, was committed by Ryan Whitney with 0.2 seconds left in the period and carried over to the third. But the Ducks were able to keep the Preds out of the net thanks in great part to Hiller.
"We knew we had to do something," Hiller said of Anaheim's penalty kill. "We were struggling a little on it in the beginning of the year. We worked hard at it in practice. Everybody was working hard. We just have to keep it up and do the same job the next game."
Each of Anaheim’s four goals came against second-year Nashville netminder Pekka Rinne, who entered the game red hot with an undefeated record in the last three games, coupled with a 0.76 goals-against average and .968 save percentage.
"From our standpoint, we did a lot of good things in the hockey game," said Carlyle. "The penalty killing came up large. When you’re penalty killing is shutting the other team’s power play out, usually your goaltender has a good part of the responsibility for that. Jonas stood in there and made some big stops for us at key times."
The Ducks have earned points in 20 of 21 all-time home games vs. Nashville (17-1-3) and have points in 16 straight home games vs. the Predators (13-0-3). The one Nashville win in regulation at Honda Center was on Jan. 31, 2001 (3-0).
Anaheim has earned points in three of the last four games (2-1-1, five points).
The Ducks have killed 12 straight penalties going back to Oct. 31 at Phoenix.
With his first goal tonight, Teemu Selanne
passed Jean Beliveau for sole possession of 38th on the NHL’s all-time points list with 586-634=1,220. His first goal also moved him past Keith Tkachuk into sole possession of 10th in all-time PP goals (211). Tonight marked Selanne’s third multi-goal game of the season and the 117th of his career.
extended his season-high point streak to seven games (1-10=11). His six-game assist streak (0-10=10) is the longest current assist streak in the NHL.
With an assist in his 300th career NHL game, Corey Perry
extended his point streak to a career-high tying seven games (6-5=11).
extended his point streak to a season-high four games (1-4=5) with two assists tonight. It is his longest scoring streak since Nov. 8-15, 2008 (four games, 2-2=4). Tonight also marked Koivu’s first multi-point game of the season.
recorded his first shutout of the season, stopping all 40 shots he faced (40 saves is a season-high and most since Apr. 10, 2009 vs. Dallas (42 saves)). It was the fifth regular season shutout of his career with the most recent coming on Jan. 17, 2009 at Minnesota.
scored his first goal of the season and his first since Apr. 10, 2009 vs. Dallas.
Tonight’s attendance was 14,298.
20:00 - END OF GAME - Emphatic win for the Ducks, who trounce the Preds 4-0 on two Selanne strikes and the first shutout of the year for Hiller.
19:48 - Ducks fans reach for the bill of their caps as Selanne gets a headman pass with open ice, but he falls down before he can shoot.
19:18 - Hiller stands tall on a wraparound try by Santorelli. Very nice effort for the kid tonight.
17:40 - ANAHEIM GOAL - BOBBY RYAN - It's a beauty for the Ducks to put this game away, and it's all three guys on the top line contributing. Getzlaf bumps the puck along the wall to Perry, who heads down the left wing before sending a backhand pass to a wide open Ryan, who one-times it off the twine. It's 4-0 Ducks and this game is over.
17:13 - Selanne gets loose as the crowd noise rises with hat trick on the brain, but his backhander under pressure is too soft.
15:25 - Hiller makes a nice stop on a shot from close range after the Preds were a good five feet offside and the officials didn't see it.
13:27 - Hiller with a nice glove stop on a shot from the point. He's got 35.
12:06 - Lupul tries to whip it on net from a low angle after a Selanne feed. Nice stop.
11:06 - NSH Penalty - Jerred Smithson, 2 min. tripping. Smithson takes down Ryan in front of the benches. No diving call this time.
9:51 - ANAHEIM GOAL - TODD MARCHANT - Just after Marchant slams David Legwand into the glass in the corner, Nokelainen steals the puck from Francis Bouillon in the other corner. He promptly feeds a wide open Marchant in the slot and Marchant one-times it through. First of the season for Marchant, , first since that overtime winner in Game 2 in Detroit, and it's 3-0 Ducks.
8:05 - ANAHEIM GOAL - TEEMU SELANNE - The Koivu-Selanne connection comes through on the 4-on-4. Selanne holds the puck against the left wing wall and sends it to Koivu, who skates away from the middle down the right wing. In an instant, he turns and feeds Selanne in the slot, and Selanne slams it home. Two fists in the air as Selanne converges on Koivu for the hug, and if you read lips, you can see Selanne yelling what appears to be "[Expletive] yeah!" Or maybe it was something in Finnish. It's 2-0 Anaheim as they get a huge insurance goal.
7:52 - ANA Penalty - Bobby Ryan
, 2 min. diving and NSH Penalty - Joel Ward, 2 min. diving. Easy to see the Ward penalty, who spun Ryan to the ground with his stick. The diving? Not so much.
4:06 - Koivu gets knocked down after the whistle and goes sliding into Rinne, who goes down like a bowling pin. No penalty.
2:00 - Big kill for the Ducks to start this stanza, as Eminger blocks a slap shot and Mike Brown knocks the puck down the ice.
0:00 - Here we go in the third, the Ducks facing two minutes of PK time.
20:00 - END OF PERIOD - No on lights the lamp in this one, but the Ducks escape on three penalty kills and will face another one when we start the third.
19:59 - After the whistle with 0.2 left, Whitney drills a Nashville player in the scrum around the net. Fourth minor of the period, but this one will fall heavy on the Ducks in the next period.
19:53 - Nice kick save by Hiller on a deep Franson shot.
17:29 - ANA Penalty - Corey Perry
, 2 min. tripping. Perry gets caught taking down Joel Ward away from the play. Third power play of the period for Nashville. Tacos or not, that needs to cease.
15:49 - George Parros
and Wade Belak drop the gloves right off the draw and get into a lengthy one where Parros gets some shots in, but takes a couple of hard lefts before pulling Belak down to the ice. First fight of the year for Belak. Not the first for Parros, who gets high fives from teammates and fans as he heads down the tunnel to the locker room.
15:04 - Ducks escape during a scramble around the cage as Hiller kicks out the leg to deny Patric Hornqvist right near the post. Hornqvist, by the way, the last pick in the 2005 draft.
14:01 - Nice snag of the puck with the glove by Hiller on an Arnott shot from the point. He says, "looks like I'm going to score" and Hiller says, "Arnott." Sorry.
13:30 - ANA Penalty - Todd Marchant
, 2 min. slashing. Marchant knocks the stick from the hands of Cody Franson.
12:30 - Ryan gets robbed as he weaves through two defenders, dekes to his right and looks to have a sure goal before Rinne kicks out the leg pad and stops it. Ryan's caught looking at the replay on the video board, thinking of what might have been.
10:59 - NSH Penalty - Bench minor, 2 min. too many men on the ice.
10:50 - Selanne springs from the bin and gets on a 2 on 1with Perry, whose centering pass to Selanne is knocked away by Francis Bouillon.
10:40 - Second period penalty kill. Everyone in the house gets a free taco from Del Taco. I grabbed food there last night at around midnight. In retrospect, when they asked me if I wanted to "macho size" my order, probably should have said, "No, thank you." I think I'm still full.
8:40 - ANA Penalty - Teemu Selanne
, 2 min. holding. Selanne wraps the stick around Suter in the Anaheim end. Not a good penalty at all.
7:28 - Niedermayer has a wide-open shot in the slot, saved.
6:19 - NSH Penalty - Michael Santorelli, 2 min. hooking. Santorelli grabs on to Mike Brown from behind.
5:25 - Nice stop by Hiller, who's holding his own so far.
2:25 - Perry making things happen again, tapping the puck hugging the net to Brown, who nearly punches it through.
0:00 - Off and running in period 2.
20:00 - END OF PERIOD - A period that goes by in a hurry finishes with a 1-0 Anaheim lead thanks to 8 on the power play.
19:45 - Andreas Thuresson gets a lot of room on the rush and fires a wrister that Hiller snags with the glove with flair.
18:54 - Perry gets deep on the right wing and fires high, gloved by Rinne.
15:32 - ANAHEIM GOAL - TEEMU SELANNE - Getzlaf walks deep into the left wing circle, turns and feeds Selanne, who sends it under Rinne from the slot. Big first goal for Anaheim and a 1-0 lead.
15:06 - NSH Penalty - Kevin Klein, 2 min. hooking. A 5 on 3 for Anaheim for 22 seconds. Klein was excellent in A Fish Called Wanda.
15:00 - Lupul fires, big Rinne save. Selanne fires the rebound, another save.
13:28 - NSH Penalty - Jordin Tootoo, 2 min. slashing. Tootoo, who wears 22, gets 2. First game of the season for him after missing the first 13 with an injury.
13:10 - Hiller bails out two Ducks defensemen as Marcel Goc somehow gets behind the D on a breakaway and his wrist shot is knocked away.
11:09 - Ducks get close as Koivu tips a Lupul shot on its way to the net.
9:40 - B. Ryan shows the rollerdaddy skills he built as a kid, jumping over a sliding Preds defender to keep heading up ice.
6:15 - ANA Penalty - Nick Boynton, 2 min. cross checking. Boynton drills Tootoo in the back and he goes down.
2:21 - An issue with the mask sends Rinne to the bench for repairs and delays the game slightly.
2:01 - Marchant gets deep on the right wing and his backhander is stopped. He creates another opportunity in front, stopped too.
0:00 - And we're underway at Honda Center.
7:08 p.m. - Jill Burke with a passionate rendition of the anthem.
Starting Goaltenders - ANA Jonas Hiller
; NSH Pekka Rinne
Starting Skaters - ANA Steve Eminger, Ryan Whitney, Teemu Selanne
, Saku Koivu
, Joffrey Lupul
; NSH Dan Hamhuis, Ryan Suter, David Legwand, Jerred Smithson, Joel Ward
Scratches - ANA Erik Christensen, James Wisniewski
(suspension); NSH - Shea Weber, Martin Erat, J.P. Dumont
Full Lineups/Game Notes