First Period Reap: If you tuned into this game expecting the Ducks to show up and take it to the Oilers like they did in Edmonton on Friday night, you were severely disappointed. The first period was a slog, to say the least. Edmonton's defense was far and away better than it was in the previous meeting, which isn't saying much since it was practically non-existent in that game.
The Oilers had the better of the play for the first half of the period, and it was several minutes past the midway point of the first before the Ducks even registered their second shot on goal. Just before the 13 minute mark Will Acton was on a delayed penalty for holding when he dropped the gloves with Matt Beleskey. It was a pretty even fight, except when Beleskey kept throwing punches after the two hit the ice.
The power play allowed the Ducks to get into the game really for the first time. They registered two shots, but the best chance of the period came a minute or so after the Oilers killed the penalty with Mathieu Perreault and Patrick Maroon on a 2-on-1. Actually if it wasn't for some serious backchecking from Justin Schultz (haha) it would have been a 2-on-0. Perreault held up at the hash marks and shot five hole, but Viktor Fasth was equal to it.
Another couple of good shifts from the Ducks ended up in a hooking call on Sam Gagne. The power play had some good puck movement and a couple of decent shots, but nothing to worry Fasth too much. Thanks to the momentum swing provided by the two late penalties the Ducks were able to draw almost even in the shots on goal, finishing the period 11-9 for Edmonton after having trailed 7-1 at one point. But for the most part it was a boring period
Second Period Recap: The second period mostly controlled by the Oilers, and more specifically by Taylor Hall. He was dangerous on the rush early on with a breakaway, splitting the D-pair of Ben Lovejoy and Hampus Lindholm. Hall tried to open Andersen up by going to the backhand but the Danish goalie closed the wickets and Lovejoy cleaned up the rebound that sat in the crease without any Oilers follow up.
Hall's second rush opportunity of the period, four minutes later, was played much more safely by Lindholm. His shot was forced from further out and steered aside calmly by Andersen.
Twelve and a half minutes into the period, Luca Sbisa and Matt Hendricks exchanged pleasantries in front of the Anaheim bench, each receiving roughing minors. During the ensuing 4-on-4 Mathieu Perreault got tangled up with Jeff Petry, they each fell down a couple of times, but unfortunately the last thing that the referee saw was Petry tripping over the stick of Perreault and the Oilers went on a 4-on-3 power play.
With only five seconds remaining on the Perreault penalty, Philip Larsen opened the scoring for Edmonton. Ryan Smyth was doing what Ryan Smyth does, screening Andersen and Larsen's shot deflected off of the glove of Bryan Allen into the near side top corner of the net.
Before the end of the period, Hall was set up for a shot from the high slot that was gloved down by Andersen, but it just cemented this as Hall's period from beginning to end. The Oilers out shot Anaheim 13-6 in the second and led 1-0 after 40 minutes.
Third Period Recap: In the third period the game came alive. The first few minutes were still controlled by Edmonton until they scored their second goal of the night. Once again it was Hall creating for the Oilers, He worked a give and go with Jordan Eberle at the blue line to create a 2-on-1 against Francois Beauchemin. Beauch tried to slide and take away the passing lane, but Hall's pass across to Eberle was perfectly timed and Andersen couldn't get across in time to stop Eberle from making it 2-0 just shy of the three minute mark in the third period.
On the next shift Andersen had to make a good save and a spectacular save on Ryan Nugent-Hopkins to keep the Oilers from running away with the game but the Ducks got the puck right back up the ice and Beleskey found Corey Perry in the high slot all alone and he wired it past Fasth. Only 37 seconds after the Oilers had jumped out to the two goal lead it was cut in half.
Shortly after the goal, Perry went hard to the net whacking away at the puck under Fasth's glove. It looked like Fasth may have been hurt on the play AGAIN, but he ended up being fine and finished the game. In the skirmish afterwards Andrew Cogliano and Martin Marincin were each assessed roughing minors for some more 4-on-4, but nothing came of the extra open ice.
About three and a half minutes later the Oilers' defense from Friday night returned for a second when Marincin's attempted clearance became a turnover. Stephane Robidas shot from the point was deflected past Fasth by Perry making a fly by in front of the crease, tying the game at two with 8:35 remaining.
The rest of the way, each team had a couple of scrambles around the net that could have been dangerous, but it was Beauchemin who broke the tie with only 1:22 on the clock. Ryan Getzlaf's pass through the neutral zone found none other than Corey Perry at the blueline and he teed the puck right up for Beauch's slapper from the top of the circle. Fasth got a piece of it, but not enough to stop it from fluttering into the net.
Dallas Eakens pulled Fasth with less than a minute left, but most of that time was wasted with the puck pinned in the corner and the Ducks held on for the 3-2 victory.
The Good: The Ducks are starting to show that resiliency that they had in the early part of the season. We've seen in previous years Getzlaf and Perry may have lost their cool and started taking stupid penalties or fighting when down multiple goals in the third period. Now they're choosing to raise the level of their game and carry the team to a victory once again. Of course,that's not entirely a positive thing, but we'll get to that in a minute.
The Bad: The Ducks' defense had no answer for the speed of Taylor Hall. For most of the game he was seemingly able to fly right up the wing and put the puck wherever he wanted to, whether it was on the tape of a teammate or right on net. On Friday, Robidas gave Hall the Corey Perry treatment, just refusing to let him go a single shift without being physically abused. For some reason, with the added benefit of the last change at home, Boudreau matched Hall up against Lovejoy and Lindholm instead and got eaten up.
The Ugly: It appears as if Monday's record setting comeback gave the Ducks the wrong idea. Instead of acting as a wake up call to show that they need to be better from the start it proved that they can get away with slow starts and spotting lower ranked teams multiple goal leads, but still win. That isn't going to fly in a couple of weeks when sh** gets real.
3rd MVD: Francois Beauchemin - If this was a real three stars it would be Taylor Hall (actually he'd probably be number two) but since it's not I guess I'll just give it to Beauch for the game winner.
2nd MVD: Frederik Andersen - bailed out Hampus Lindholm and Ben Lovejoy on a number of occasions when Taylor Hall was just too much for them, but mostly the reason he's here is for that one outrageous save he made on RNH that could have easily put the game away, instead it started the comeback for the Ducks. He even got an assist on the Perry goal a few seconds later thanks to that monster save.
1st MVD: Corey Perry - Two goals and an assist in a 3-2 comeback win will put you at the top of the three stars list every single time.
Next Game: Friday, April 4, 2014 at 7:00 pm PT Home to the Nashville Predators