A thrilling game 1 had Saturday approaching not fast enough. Finally, Game 2 was at hand and a late scratch had Korbinian Holzer draw in for the Vatman while Ritchie took Kase’s spot on the third line. With “Dawn!” being shouted in the anthem and the orange towels waving, it was time for puck drop.
After a few shots on goal and a little over three minutes in, it was the Ducks striking first once again. And wow, does Elliot want this one back. Montour gained the zone and left the puck for Jakob Silfverberg. He took a shot from the top of the circle nearby the wall...and it went in. Elliot simply missed. ANA-1 CGY-0.
Corey Perry was looking like his old self as he continuously harassed Versteeg. Eventually the two of them got into a scuffle that resulted in Perry’s helmet being removed. Both took a couple for roughing and appropriately so. On the ensuing 4v4, Getzlaf chipped the puck to the corner and sent it behind the Calgary net. Rakell would bat the puck mid air from Brodie and stuff the puck with a wrap around on a very confused Elliot. The Pond was rocking, ANA-2 CGY-0.
It wouldn’t take long before some more scrums occurred, this time in front of Gibson. The Flames were certainly frustrated. Vermette would get a step behind the defense but Matt Bartkowski made a nice poke check from behind to end it. Calgary started to get some good movement but Gibson made it all seem easy with great rebound control.
Soon Major Eaves would be high sticked and bled like he did during his civil war days drawing a double minor. What an opportunity...to totally squander. With hungry Ducks pinching hard (Theodore) it allowed Mikael Backlund to slip behind the Ducks for a breakaway. Frolik won the puck to set his teammate up and Backlund went forehand, backhand, forehand to barely put it over Gibby’s pad. ANA-2 CGY-1.
The Ducks had a few more scoring chances but the period ended on that dull note as the Ducks outshot Calgary 12-11.
The Ducks continued to look lame on their power play, giving Calgary a huge PK and a boost in momentum. Johnny hockey was sprung free but thankfully shot it up high. Then our dearest Kevin took a slashing penalty sending the Flames to the power play. Sean Monahan would strike, sentencing the Honda Center to silence. Brodie faked a shot at the point and passed to Johnny Gaudreau who dished up Monahan for the one timer. Tick, tack, goal. Tie game 2-2.
Perry got a chance right after the equalizer but Brian Elliot said no. Once again more pushing and shoving, this time with Nick Ritchie losing his bucket. Then it was Gibby time. Troy Brouwer took a wrister and followed his rebound while Stajan hacked away for a goal. The biscuit found its way to the other side of the crease as Bouma’s backhand was denied with the sprawling glove of John Gibson. What. A. Save.
The chaos wasn’t over, as these November looking Ducks continued to suck. Versteeg threw a backhand to the cage and it turned into a mad scrum. Sam Bennett’s skate shoved Gibson’s pad into the net allowing the puck to cross the goal line. Chiasson was also all over Gibby on the other side, making this review easy for the refs. No goal.
Even Ryan Getzlaf made a bad pass, everything was going terrible. Stone would find Monahan all alone in front of the net for a redirection but luckily he tipped it wide. How are opposing players just standing in front of the net all by themselves? Can someone explain that. Stupid Kevin Bieksa took another trip to the box. Cogs and Shaw took off on a shorthanded 2v1 but could not score. The Ducks killed this one off.
The period came to an ungraceful ending as Lindholm and Alex Chiasson got into a scuffle of tangled up sticks. As that went down, Ryan Kesler and Sam Bennett got two each for roughing. Then Bieksa did us all a favor by earning five minutes of no ice time in some fisticuffs with Ferland. These teams hate each other. Calgary now outshot the Ducks 26-18.
Nate Thomspson had an early chance from Cogliano but Elliot continued to stand strong. The Ducks had control of the puck (finally) but weren’t getting quality chances. Perry would take a hit down low but the Flames forgot that you need to defend in front of the net as well. Cogs was stopped though, Elliot bailed them out. Then Shea Theodore gave up a puck to Hamilton who fed Backlund but Gibby stopped the rush.
Silfy entered the Calgary zone slamming on the brakes and zipped a puck to a crashing Montour but Elliot fought the shot off with the glove. The Flames then attacked with some decent looks but it was the goalies keeping rubber out. Hampus Lindholm turned over a puck to Monahan and it led to Johnny Hockey getting a scoring chance but Gibson managed to make a shoulder save. It was some ugly hockey.
Then Dougie Hamilton got caught up in Perry’s antics. Pears ran into Hamilton in the neutral zone and Hamilton took the liberty of holding onto Perry’s stick, right in front of an official. Ducks to the man advantage. It was then that the magic of the streak hit. On the power play, Getzlaf attempted to rip a pass across the slot. Instead, the puck would ricochet off Bouma’s skate and flutter into the net. Wow. Just wow. The sea of orange and black rejoiced. ANA-3 CGY-2. The curse is a thing people.
The fans taunted the poor tendy with chants of his name. Soon after, another stupid penalty by the Flames took place. This time it was Brodie cross checking an already down Kesler. Another power play. The two minutes was just a clock burner as with under a minute to go, Elliot finally got to the bench. Lindholm did it again with a tape to tape pass to Gaudreau, scaring us all, who passed to Kris Versteeg but Gibson was on it. Calgary would use a timeout late, but it would not matter as the Ducks cleared the puck and sealed the W. Ducks win 3-2. The SOG were 37-29 Flames though, so thank Gibson.
Anaheim has not lost a regular season game since March 10.
Game three will take place across the border in Calgary Monday night.