ANAHEIM – Elation went to frustration in a hurry at Honda Center tonight, as the Ducks failed to hold onto a two-goal lead in the final half of the third period and ultimately fell 5-4 to visiting Atlanta in a shootout.
Winger Anthony Stewart finished off a hat trick with two Thrashers goals in the third to force extra time, then Nigel Dawes had the only conversion in the shootout to finish off the Ducks (1-3-1).
"Any time you lose in your own building, it’s disappointing, especially when you have the lead going into the third," said Ducks captain Ryan Getzlaf. "We worked pretty hard all game long. We needed to close it out of the end and we didn’t."
The Ducks had jumped to a 4-2 lead 6:35 into the third period when Getzlaf scored on the power play off a nice through-the-crease feed by Corey Perry.
But Stewart pulled Atlanta to within one on the power play exactly four minutes later, reaching out to deposit the puck in the net after Rich Peverley threw it off Jonas Hiller from the corner.
Another four minutes later, Stewart tied the game 4-4 on a controversial goal in which he appeared to be the first player to touch the puck after Peverley knocked it out of the air with a high stick. After a Dustin Byfuglien point shot was deflected high into the air, Peverley batted it toward the net, where Stewart also hit it in midair into the net. Officials ruled it a goal on the ice, and confirmed it after replay review, much to the dismay of the home crowd.
The Ducks, who had 41 shots on the night to Atlanta’s 33, only managed one attempt on net in the overtime, forcing a shootout. Perry, Getzlaf, Teemu Selanne and Saku Koivu each came up empty and Dawes clinched victory by beating Hiller on the glove side.
Hiller helped the Ducks avoid going down in overtime, throwing out his skate to deny Stewart on a breakaway with just four seconds on the clock.
Selanne played a part in both Ducks second period goals that gave Anaheim a 3-2 lead. Midway through the session, Selanne fired a shot from the right wing on the slot, creating a hard rebound off goalie Mason. Fellow Finn Toni Lydman was in the right place at the right time to bat it through.
Lydman, the 33-year-old defenseman, was playing his first game after missing time with bouts of double-vision suffered a week and a half before training camp.
Chris Thorburn made it 2-2 on the Thrashers man advantage following a Lubomir Visnovsky tripping call, but Selanne came back with a power play goal of his own with 51.7 seconds left in the period to reclaim the Ducks lead. Another Finn, Koivu, assisted on the goal, waiting behind the Atlanta net for Selanne to get into position before giving him a pinpoint pass at the top of the crease for the one-timer. It was the second straight goal for Selanne and the 608th of his career, tying him with Dino Ciccarelli for 16th all time.
The Ducks got off to a rocky start in the game when Stewart took advantage of a defensive breakdown to score from the high slot just 17 seconds after the opening faceoff.
But the Ducks tied it halfway through the first when a leaping Perry got a piece of a Visnovsky rocket from the point on the power play, Perry’s second goal in as many nights.
"We’re upset with losing the point tonight," said Ducks coach Randy Carlyle. "That is probably as emotional as I have been in losing a shootout because there were mental mistakes that we made that cost us the point, not their effort. They worked and tried. Some nights shootouts go for you, some nights they don’t."
The Ducks play again Sunday night against Phoenix at Honda Center. "We just need to keep pushing," Getzlaf said. "We have a big game coming up on Sunday and we know it. We’ll come to work tomorrow like professionals and get ready."
Sunday’s game is Hockey Fights Cancer Awareness Night at Honda Center. In addition to highlighting the Orange County/Inland Empire chapter of the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society, the club will honor Dr. Jeffrey Pulver, the Ducks’ long-time oral surgeon who passed away in June after a 14-year battle with cancer.
The Ducks have gone 6-for-16 on the power play over the last three games for a 37.5% success rate. Anaheim’s three power play goals tonight are the most since Apr. 2, 2010 vs. Vancouver (3-for-8).
Teemu Selanne’s power play goal at 19:08 of the second period moved him into a share of 16th in all-time NHL goals (also Dino Ciccarelli, 608). With 1-2=3 tonight, Selanne marked his first three-point game since Apr. 2, 2010 vs. Vancouver (2-1=3). Selanne has earned 2-3=5 points over the last four games.
In his first appearance in 2010-11 (also first game as a Duck), Toni Lydman scored a goal, his first since Apr. 6, 2010 with Buffalo vs. the New York Rangers.
With 1-1=2 tonight, Ryan Getzlaf has earned 2-4=6 points in the last two games.
Corey Perry has earned 2-2=4 points over the last two games, including 1-2=3 tonight. His last three-point game took place on Mar. 21 vs. Colorado (0-3=3).
Tonight’s attendance was 13,123.
ATL Nigel Dawes' attempt is GOOD, as he races in and wrists it past Hiller glove side. Thrashers win it, 5-4.
ANA Saku Koivu's attempt is NO GOOD, as he fakes a shot and fires right into Mason.
ATL Bryan Little's attempt is NO GOOD, as he tries a wrister that hits Hiller and goes wide.
ANA Teemu Selanne's attempt is NO GOOD, as he races in and tries a quick wrister into Mason.
ATL Rich Peverley's attempt is NO GOOD, as he dekes to the backhand and Hiller stops it with the mitt.
ANA Ryan Getzlaf's attempt is NO GOOD, as he dekes to the forehand but Mason is there.
ATL Evander Kane's attempt is NO GOOD, as he has trouble controlling the puck and wrists it off the glass.
ANA Corey Perry's attempt is NO GOOD, as he swings in from the right wing and shoots a backhander too high.
5:00 - END OF OVERTIME - Ducks narrowly escape and we're going to a shootout.
4:56 - Hiller saves the day as Stewart (three goals already) gets on the breakaway following a shot by Fowler that goes wide. Hiller throws out the skate to deny the breakaway with four seconds left. Wow.
4:10 - Lydman almost gets the winner, but good save Mason.
3:49 - Ducks without a shot in the OT.
3:20 - Desperation kick save by Hiller on a shot from the point to save the game.
2:06 - Marchant appears to jam the puck in from the side of the net, but it's waved off by the official, who says the net was off its support and the puck went under it. Replay review confirms that fact. Fans still don't like it.
0:00 - Here we go.
20:00 - END OF REGULATION - Ducks don't get a shot over that final half-minute and we're going to overtime.
19:26 - Timeout Atlanta. Smart one since their tired unit has to stay on following the icing.
19:26 - Atlanta ices it with 33.5 left, cuing the Rocky music. Love it.
18:45 - 40th shot of the game for Anaheim, 29 for Atlanta.
17:15 - Sexton feeds Beleskey in the slot, who kicks it to his stick and fires just wide.
16:00 - Mason makes a couple of nice stops on rockets from Vish and Perry.
14:55 - ATL Penalty - Ben Eager, 2 min. hooking. Ducks with a big chance.
14:38 - ATLANTA GOAL - ANTHONY STEWART - Byfuglien fires from the point and it's deflected up into the air, where Peverley swats at it with a high stick toward the net. Stewart is right in front to bat it out of the air into the net. The call on the ice is a goal, but they go to replay review, which shows that Peverley hit it with a high stick, meaning an Atlanta player can't be the next to touch it. Somehow, someway, the referee announces the call on the ice stands, drawing boos from the home crowd. Dubious hat trick for Stewart. Still not sure how that was a goal, but it's 4-4.
Dad is sitting five rows behind the tennis balls tonight. Thank you very much, employee comps.
13:48 - ANA Penalty - Corey Perry, 2 min. slashing. Perry breaks a stick after a blocked shot.
13:00 - I could use some insurance right now.
Boos as they show on the out-of-town scoreboard that the Kings are beating the Canucks and even bigger boos when they show that the Yankees came back to beat Texas, 6-5.
10:35 - ATLANTA GOAL (POWER PLAY) - ANTHONY STEWART - Stewart gets his second of the night as Peverley retrieves the puck off the wall and backhands it on net. It hits Hiller and trickles into the crease, where Stewart reaches out and deposits it netward. It's 4-3 Ducks now.
10:15 - A 2 on 1 goes awry when Chipchura takes the shot, and might have missed an open Marchant.
8:50 - ANA Penalty - Brendan Mikkelson, 2 min. high sticking. "Phil" gets the stick up in front of his own net.
8:10 - Sexton working his rear end off behind the Atlanta net. Love this kid.
6:35 - ANAHEIM GOAL (POWER PLAY) - RYAN GETZLAF - It's textbook twin-to-twin as Perry maneuvers toward the net, moves it to his backhand and sends it across the crease where Getzlaf is waiting for it to chip it into the open net. It's 4-2 on a monster goal for the Ducks. Second in as many games for Getzlaf. Perry and Selanne also have their second straight tonight.
I love girls' reactions when they realize they're on the video board. They're either embarassed or elated, but the best is when they're both.
6:22 - ATL Penalty - Freddy Meyer, 2 min. tripping. Blake draws it by going hard to the crease.
4:15 - Nice kill by the Ducks.
2:15 - ANA Penalty - Toni Lydman, 2 min. hooking. Lydman gets caught in front oft the Ducks net.
2:15 - Ducks outshooting Atlanta, 30-18. Not kidding.
0:00 - Off and running in the third.
20:00 - END OF PERIOD - We're still riding the high of that Selanne goal, as the Ducks head to the locker room with a 3-2 lead.
19:08 - ANAHEIM GOAL (POWER PLAY) - TEEMU SELANNE - It's Finn to Finn again, but in a different way. Koivu holds the puck behind the net and waits and waits and waits for Selanne to fight for position in front before dishing a no-look pass that the Flash one-times past Mason. It's the 608th for Selanne, tied for 16th all time. He's good.
They decide to go a little more blurry on the photo for Guess That Duck texting contest. The hint is, This Duck scored his 100th NHL point on Dec. 29 vs. Minnesota, though they don't give the year. It's a choice between Getzlaf, Perry and Ryan. Perry is in the lead and ... it's Bobby Ryan! Fools!!
17:50 - ATL Penalty - Nik Antropov, 2 min. hooking. Another PP for the Ducks as the former Leaf gets the gate.
15:00 - Perry again hammering away in deep.
14:45 - Perry two quick shots, but denied.
13:21 - ATLANTA GOAL (POWER PLAY) - CHRIS THORBURN - Byfuglien fires a slap shot from the point that Thorburn tips through with his back to the net. It's the third of the year for Thorburn, who had four in 76 games last year. We're tied 2-2.
12:19 - ANA Penalty - Lubomir Visnovsky, 2 min. tripping. Visnovsky gets flagged for tripping Kane from behind on a shorthanded rush as Ryan goes into the wall hard and looks like he's in some pain.
11:30 - Selanne with a great chance as he tries a one-timer from the circle, but it hits the side of the net. He's not pleased.
10:36 - ATL Penalty - Chris Thoburn, 2 min. tripping. Got to admit, I didn't see it.
9:43 - ANAHEIM GOAL - TONI LYDMAN - It's Finn to Finn as Beleskey drops it to Selanne on the rush and Selanne fires a hard wrister from the right wing. Mason makes the initial stop, but lets out a hard rebound to a charging Lydman, who bats it in for his first as a Duck in his first game. It's 2-1 Ducks. That was pretty cool.
I would say these guys below us have been boozin', but they were like this early in the first.
6:30 - Loving the Beleskey-Chipchura-Sexton line right now. Making a lot happen.
5:37 - Just as an unsuccessful power play ends, Sexton fires a quick one off Mason.
3:30 - ATL Penalty - Rich Peverley, 2 min. tripping. Peverley gets called for taking down Ryan at center ice, although the penalty may have been on the ice instead.
2:55 - Slater with another chance on the rush, deflected away by Hiller.
2:15 - Lydman does a nice job breaking up a shot by Slater and gets a little hit in for good measure.
0:00 - Here we go in the second.
20:00 - END OF PERIOD - Ducks give up an early one, but get one back courtesy of Perry (Visnovsky) to tie it 1-1 through 1. Ducks outshoot the Thrashers 11-10 in the period.
18:50 - Ryan feeds Getzlaf in the slot, but he whiffs on the one-timer.
Some dude below the box is yelling, "Sweet spot, Teemu, sweet spot!" Not sure what that means. Not the only thing he's yelling tonight.
18:25 - Ryan weaves in and shoots a backhand that's deflected into the crease, and Getzlaf and Perry try to hack away to no avail.
17:52 - ATL Penalty - Bryan Little, 2 min. hooking. Little looks like he steals the puck from Big Sexy to get on the breakaway, but his momentum is stalled by a whistle for the hook.
17:27 - Visnovsky gets into the bottom of the right wing circle and fires a backhander, saved.
It's the Steal a Player's iPod segment, where you text your vote on whether you want to hear Jason Blake's, Saku Koivu's or Luca Sbisa's iPod. Koivu is the winner so far with 50 percent of the vote, though I would imagine his iPod is filled with a lot of Finnish rock. Not sure I can name a Finnish recording artist right now, but I imagine they sing about saunas a lot.
13:30 - Ducks all over the Atlanta net right now.
12:19 - Sexton speeds down right wing and fires into the glove.
10:20 - Ducks throw a couple on net, both stopped by Mason.
Okay, now they give him the assist, though I still think the goal was his.
Still haven't announced that Visnovsky even got an assist on that one. What's the guy got to do?
8:43 - ANAHEIM GOAL (POWER PLAY) - COREY PERRY - The Ducks cash in on the PP quickly, as Visnovsky rips a shot from above the left wing circle past a leaping Perry, off the leg pad of Mason and in. It's determined that Perry got a piece of it, though not sure that was the case. They do a quick replay, but not sure why. It's a Ducks goal and it's 1-1.
7:54 - ANA Penalty - George Parros, 5 min. fighting and ATL Penalty - Chris Thorburn, 2 min. roughing and 5 min. fighting. Parros tangles with Byfuglien behind the net as the puck heads the other way and though Byguflien is a big boy, Chris Thorburn jumps in to defend, with he and Parros not landing much before it's broken up. Thorburn get the extra two, giving the Ducks a power play.
6:30 - Perry nearly pokes in a rebound in front as the puck slides across the blue paint but goes wide.
3:50 - Perry with a good look from the slot, but denied.
3:40 - Ryan weaves to the middle of the ice, but too much pressure by the Thrashers.
0:30 - Lydman on for the first time this season for Anaheim, paired with Visnovsky.
0:17 - ATLANTA GOAL - ANTHONY STEWART - Defensive breakdown leads to a shockingly early one for Atlanta, as Andrew Ladd feeds from the left wing to Stewart, wide open in the middle of the ice, and Stewart tags a slap shot that nicks off Hiller's stick and hits the inside of the post before finding net. It's 1-0 Thrashers.
0:00 - And we're underway at Honda Center.
7:07 p.m. - Emily Van Gorder, who I believe won one of our Oh Say Can You Sing? contests, does a beautiful job on the anthem. Starters in bold/italics. Scratches crossed out.