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Ducks Rally from 3-Goal Deficit to grab 3-0 Series Lead
- Updated: April 18, 2017
Corey Perry’s OT Winner puts Ducks one win from second round
CALGARY-After two hard fought games in Anaheim, the Anaheim Ducks-Calgary Flames series shifted to Calgary on Monday night with Anaheim up 2-0. The Flames looked to an energetic crowd to help them get back in the series. A Ducks rally, however, put them on the verge of elimination.
Two goals from rookie defenseman Shea Theodore helped the Ducks rally from a 4-1 deficit to defeat the Calgary Flames 5-4 in overtime and take a 3-0 series lead.
Things actually started off pretty well for the Flames. Just 1:47 into the game, Calgary was awarded a power-play. Anaheim forward Nick Ritchie was called for interference on Flames defenseman Matt Bartkowski.
23 seconds into the man-advantage, center Sean Monahan scored his third goal of the series to give the home team a 1-0 lead. All three of Monahan’s goals have come on the power-play in the series.
Just over seven minutes later, Kris Versteeg would extend Calgary’s lead to 2-0. This goal would also come on the power-play, giving Versteeg his first goal of the playoffs.
The Ducks would answer, however, with 4:27 left in the first. Antoine Vermette fired a low wrist shot that Flames goalie Brian Elliott could not handle. That allowed Ritchie to capitalize on the rebound for his first career playoff goal and cut Calgary’s lead to one.
CALGARY POWER-PLAY STAYS HOT
In the second, however, the Flames would extend their lead yet again.
4:34 into the middle frame, defenseman Michael Stone fired a slap shot past Anaheim goalie John Gibson to restore Calgary’s two-goal lead. Just under four minutes later, the power-play would strike again for the home team.
A point shot from captain Mark Giordano deflected off of center Sam Bennett’s foot and into the goal to give the Flames a 4-1 lead. The goal would mark the end of the night for Gibson, as he was pulled for back up Jonathan Bernier.
The goal was Calgary’s fifth on the power-play in the series and third in the game. The Flames are now 5-for-13 on the man advantage through three games.
DUCKS RALLY BEGINS
As the period was winding down, it looked for sure that Calgary would hold that 4-1 lead going into the third period. However, that’s when Theodore would step into the spotlight.
With 48.2 seconds left in the period, Theodore skated down the left wing side. Just inside the circle, he fired a wrist shot that seemed to fool Elliott. The Flames goalie whiffed on it, giving the rookie his first career playoff goal and making it a two-goal game again.
That’s how things would stay going into the third period. In the third, Anaheim started to pressure Calgary. The Flames did good in holding off the Ducks in the first half of the period. However, with 8:46 left in the game, center Nate Thompson made Calgary fans hold their breath.
Thompson deflected a shot from defenseman Hampus Lindholm past Elliott to bring Anaheim within one. The goal would be reviewed for a high stick. The referees determined, though, that Thompson’s stick was not above the height of the crossbar and the goal stood.
With the game clock ticking away, Theodore would again make his presence felt. The 21-year-old scored his second goal of the game with just 4:21 left to erase the Flames’ lead and tie the game at 4-4. That would set the stage for Corey Perry.
The game would head into overtime for the first time in the series. And like he did in 2015, Perry wouldn’t need a lot of time to hand Calgary a loss.
Just 1:30 into the extra period, Perry’s shot from the right boards deflected off of Stone past Elliott to cap off the Ducks’ rally and give them the 5-4 win. It was Perry’s first goal of the 2017 playoffs and first in his last 10 playoff games.
HISTORIC NIGHT FOR DUCKS AND PERRY
It capped off a historic night for the 31-year-old and his team. Game 3 was Perry’s 100th career playoff game. He becomes only the second Anaheim player in franchise history to play in 100 career postseason games, per the NHL’s media site. The other is current Ducks captain Ryan Getzlaf.
It was his second career playoff overtime game winner, as well. His first also came against the Flames in Game 5 of their second round series in 2015. That goal propelled Anaheim to the Conference Final for the first time since 2007.
The goal also put him in the Ducks record books yet again. According to the NHL’s media site, Perry became the sixth Duck in franchise history with two playoff overtime goals. He got to within two goals of tying franchise great Teemu Selanne for the most playoff goals in team history, as well.
For Anaheim, it was a historic because it marked the first time they had ever overcome a three-goal deficit in a playoff game, according to the Elias Sports Bureau. It also marked Bernier’s first career playoff win, as well as Thompson’s first career three-point game in the playoffs.
The Ducks now have a commanding 3-0 series lead and can wrap up the series in Game 4 on Wednesday night (10:00 PM ET, USA, CBC, TVAS, PRIME).
THREE STARS OF THE GAME:
1ST STAR: Corey Perry, ANA
2ND STAR: Kevin Bieksa, ANA
3RD STAR: Sam Bennett, CGY