Once again, the Ducks and Red Wings are going the distance. And how could they not? For the sake of history, if not our collective cardiovascular health, this matchup had to go seven. Let's see how the Ducks have faired when pushed to the limit in years past.
1997 Western Conference Quarterfinals
Phoenix Coyotes 0, Mighty Ducks of Anaheim 3
After winning their first two playoff games in franchise history, the fourth seeded Mighty Ducks dropped three straight to the fifth seeded 'Yotes. Paul Kariya forced a seventh game with his overtime winner in Game Six, and the series moved back to the Pond. Defenseman Dave Karpa, who had scored two goals in 69 games during the regular season, recorded his first and last career playoff goal just over three minutes into the first period, and it was all the Ducks needed as Guy Herbert shut the door on all 31 shots the Coyotes sent his way. Steve Rucchin and Joe Sacco added second period goals, and the Ducks claimed their first ever Stanley Cup Playoff series win.
2003 Stanley Cup Final
Mighty Ducks of Anaheim 0, New Jersey Devils 3
Once again, Paul Kariya's heroics forced a Game Seven, this time away from home. And once again, the series would end in a 3-0 shutout, but this time it would be Ducks on the wrong end of things. Rookie Mike Rupp scored the Stanley Cup-winning goal by deflecting a Scott Niedermayer point shot past J-S Giguere in the second period, and he added two assists for a three-point night. Martin Brodeur stopped 24 of 24, securing his third Stanley Cup championship and ending the Ducks' Cinderella run, despite Giguere's Conn Smythe performance.
2006 Western Conference Quarterfinals
Mighty Ducks of Anaheim 3, Calgary Flames 0
The Ducks may have been able to force a Game Seven without Francois Beauchemin introducing Jarome Iginla to his fists in Game Six, but it wouldn't have been nearly as fun if he hadn't. For the third time in a row, the Ducks played in a 3-0 Game Seven, and for the second time they came out on top. Teemu Selanne opened the scoring in the second period, and Ruslan Salei doubled the lead with a minute to go in the middle frame. Jeff Friesen capped off the series with an empty net goal, and Ilya Bryzgalov made 22 saves in the final installment of the 3 vs 6 upset.
2009 Western Conference Semifinals
Anaheim Ducks 3, Detroit Red Wings 4
The Red Wings led 2-0 and 3-1 at different points during the second period, but Corey Perry brought them within a goal going into the final frame. In his last ever Stanley Cup Playoff game, Scott Niedermayer (as well as Perry) assisted on Bobby Ryan's game tying goal, [Ed. Note: Bad omen -CK] and as time wound down everyone watching started thinking about overtime. With three minutes to go, however, Dan Cleary pushed the puck past Jonas Hiller and scored perhaps the most heartbreaking goal in Ducks history.
2013 Western Conference Quarterfinals
Detroit Red Wings at Anaheim Ducks
For the first time since 1997, the Ducks will play a Game Seven at home. And for the first time ever, they will play a Game Seven in a series that they could have closed out in six. This is the first of the six Anaheim-Detroit series that the Ducks began on home ice, and Sunday's game will be the last between the two rivals in the Western Conference. The Ducks have never played past 60 minutes in a Game Seven, but if the first six games of this series are any indication, that may change this time around.