Stars
Ducks
2 - 3 Final - OT
  for this game

Scott Niedermayer's OT goal clinches playoff spot for Ducks

Mar 24, 2007 - 6:58 AM ANAHEIM, California (Ticker) -- It was only fitting that captain Scott Niedermayer secured a postseason berth for the Anaheim Ducks.

Niedermayer scored at 2:28 of overtime and Chris Kunitz added a pair of goals as the Ducks clinched a playoff spot with a 3-2 victory over the Dallas Stars.

Corey Perry recorded two assists and Jean-Sebastien Giguere made 34 saves for Anaheim (44-19-12), which has a franchise-high 100 points, one behind idle Nashville (47-21-7) for first overall in the Western Conference.

"You try not to think about the playoffs and focus on the present," Giguere said. "Obviously, this was a good preparation for the playoffs. You've got to be able to play these types of games."

"Right now, it doesn't mean anything," Kunitz said of clinching the playoff spot. "We don't have a guaranteed spot on home ice, and that's what we're looking for. We want to get home ice all the way through the playoffs."

Trailing, 2-1, the Ducks forged a tie on Kunitz's second power-play goal of the game just under five minutes into the third period. Dallas goaltender Marty Turco kept the contest even with a brilliant save on Andy McDonald's shot during a 2-on-1 rush with 5:40 remaining but could not prevent Niedermayer from scoring for the first time in 10 games during the extra session.

From the right point, fellow defenseman Francois Beauchemin dished the puck to Niedermayer, who beat Turco high to the glove side with a wrist shot from the high slot for his 13th goal of the season.

"When it's 4-on-4, there's a lot of opportunity to change positioning and move around," Niedermayer said. "I thought I was just in a good spot to shoot. (The defenseman) gave me a little bit of room, and when the puck was back in front of the net, I just thought it was a good opportunity to get a shot on net."

"I didn't catch (sight of the puck) right away," Turco said. "He shot it as our defenseman was moving. I've got to hang in there and make the save and not just go down when I don't see anything."

The victory also is a franchise high for the Ducks, who notched 43 last campaign.

"It's nice to clinch a playoff berth, but nobody is talking about that for us," Carlyle said. "We're in, but what does it mean? Right now, it's about getting our team to play at the top of their game and be more consistent with what we do."

Defenseman Sergei Zubov and Mike Modano tallied for Dallas (44-24-6), which climbed within one point of idle Minnesota (44-24-7) for sixth place in the West.

"I liked the way we competed," Stars coach Dave Tippett said. "We competed hard. I thought Turco gave us some big saves and we fumbled a bit with the puck, but Giguere made some great saves for them, too."

Kunitz gave Anaheim a 1-0 lead with 5:41 to go in the first, beating Turco to the short side with a shot from below the right faceoff circle.

"I knew Mac (McDonald) was off to the side and looked at him," Kunitz said. "The goalie kind of bit, so I shot five-hole and it went in."

But Zubov drew the Stars even with a man-advantage tally of his own with four minutes left in the session.

"We had a breakout, which I tried to follow," Zubov said. "They overplayed Mike a little, so I had an opportunity to carry the puck. I moved inside to the middle, and then I was in shooting position. I took a slapper against the direction the goalie was moving and it went in."

Modano put Dallas ahead 1:40 into the second, when he carried down the left wing, went around the net and wrapped the puck inside the right goalpost.

"I was able to get some speed down the side," Modano said. "I almost lost (possession) about three times, but I was able to control it and get something on it. Giguere comes out and challenges really good, so at that point, I just ran out of space and figured I'd try and come down low on the other side to get around him."

However, Kunitz made the lead short-lived as he grabbed a loose puck in the slot and fired it between Giguere's pads 3:16 later for his 25th goal.

The tally capped Kunitz's third multi-goal performance of the season.








  • NHL
    FINAL IN OT 1ST 2ND 3RD OT TOTAL
    --- --- --- --- -----
    DALLAS 1 0 1 0 2
    ANAHEIM 1 0 1 1 3 FINAL IN OT
    GOAL SCORING:
    1ST PRD: ANA - (PP) CHRIS KUNITZ 24 (COREY PERRY, ANDY MCDONALD)
    14:19
    DAL - (PP) SERGEI ZUBOV 11 (UNASSISTED) 16:00
    2ND PRD: NONE
    3RD PRD: DAL - MIKE MODANO 19 (LADISLAV NAGY, JERE

    Mar 24 12:31 AM


  • NHL
    DALLAS 2
    ANAHEIM 3
    OT: ANA - CHRIS KUNITZ 26 (UNASSISTED) 2:48

    Stars vs. DucksMar 24 12:30 AM


  • NHL
    END OF THE 3RD GOING INTO OT
    1ST 2ND 3RD TOTAL
    --- --- --- -----
    DALLAS 1 0 1 2
    ANAHEIM 1 0 1 2 GOING INTO OT
    GOAL SCORING:
    1ST PRD: ANA - (PP) CHRIS KUNITZ 24 (COREY PERRY, ANDY MCDONALD)
    14:19
    DAL - (PP) SERGEI ZUBOV 11 (UNASSISTED) 16:00
    2ND PRD: NONE
    3RD PRD: DAL - MIKE MODANO 19 (LADISLAV NAGY, JERE LEHTINEN) 1:40
    ANA - (PP) CH

    Mar 24 12:25 AM
  • 65
    roots
    RUWTbot Added 33 roots

    Stars vs. DucksMar 24 12:16 AM
  • 32
    roots
    RUWTbot Added 32 roots

    Stars vs. DucksMar 24 12:12 AM


  • NHL
    DALLAS 2
    ANAHEIM 2
    3RD PRD: ANA - (PP) CHRIS KUNITZ 25 (COREY PERRY, SCOTT NIEDERMAYER)
    4:56

    Stars vs. DucksMar 24 12:02 AM


  • NHL
    DALLAS 2
    ANAHEIM 1
    3RD PRD: DAL - MIKE MODANO 19 (LADISLAV NAGY, JERE LEHTINEN) 1:40

    Stars vs. DucksMar 23 11:58 PM


  • NHL
    END OF THE 2ND 1ST 2ND 3RD TOTAL
    --- --- --- -----
    DALLAS 1 0 1
    ANAHEIM 1 0 1 END OF THE 2ND
    GOAL SCORING:
    1ST PRD: ANA - (PP) CHRIS KUNITZ 24 (COREY PERRY, ANDY MCDONALD)
    14:19
    DAL - (PP) SERGEI ZUBOV 11 (UNASSISTED) 16:00
    2ND PRD: NONE
    SHOTS ON GOAL: 1ST 2ND 3RD TOTAL
    --- --- --- -----
    DAL 14 12

    Mar 23 11:37 PM


  • NHL
    END OF THE 1ST 1ST 2ND 3RD TOTAL
    --- --- --- -----
    DALLAS 1 1
    ANAHEIM 1 1 END OF THE 1ST
    GOAL SCORING:
    1ST PRD: ANA - (PP) CHRIS KUNITZ 24 (COREY PERRY, ANDY MCDONALD)
    14:19
    DAL - (PP) SERGEI ZUBOV 11 (UNASSISTED) 16:00
    SHOTS ON GOAL: 1ST 2ND 3RD TOTAL
    --- --- --- -----
    DAL 14 14
    ANA

    Mar 23 10:44 PM


  • NHL
    DALLAS 1
    ANAHEIM 1
    1ST PRD: DAL - (PP) SERGEI ZUBOV 11 (UNASSISTED) 16:00

    Stars vs. DucksMar 23 10:38 PM


  • NHL
    DALLAS 0
    ANAHEIM 1
    1ST PRD: ANA - (PP) CHRIS KUNITZ 24 (COREY PERRY, ANDY MCDONALD) 14:19

    Stars vs. DucksMar 23 10:33 PM