for this game

Ducks persevere without Pronger, even conference finals

May 18, 2007 - 6:54 AM ANAHEIM, California (Ticker) -- Forced to play without one of their defensive pillars, the Anaheim Ducks raised their game to a new height.

With Norris Trophy candidate Chris Pronger serving a one-game suspension, Ryan Getzlaf snapped a tie 5:24 into the third period and Jean-Sebastien Giguere made 36 saves as the Ducks evened their Western Conference final series at two games apiece with a 5-3 victory over the Detroit Red Wings on Thursday.

Teemu Selanne had a goal and two assists and defenseman Francois Beauchemin set up a pair of tallies for Anaheim, which gets back the services of Pronger for a pivotal Game Five in Detroit on Sunday afternoon.

"You can't replace a guy like him," Selanne said. "(It was) going to give a great opportunity to other players to step up, show what they can do. They did a great job."

"Not one guy can do it by himself," Giguere added. "Everybody has to do it, and I think as a team, we were able to overcome (Pronger's absence)."

After being soundly beaten at home in Game Three, the Ducks were forced to bounce back without Pronger, who was handed a one-game ban by the NHL for delivering a blow to the head of Detroit's Tomas Holmstrom in Tuesday's loss. They had a strong first period but were outplayed in the middle session, setting up a crucial third.

"The level of play that we displayed tonight was kind of a gut check for our group," Anaheim coach Randy Carlyle said. "Our players took that responsibility upon themselves. We had different people step up and have huge games for our hockey club."

"You know the team's going to play," Red Wings coach Mike Babcock said. "You're not playing against Chris Pronger, you're playing against the Ducks. Just like when we lost our people, significant people for us, you just keep playing. That's what you do. That's what good teams do."

With the game even at 3-3 and the Red Wings holding the momentum, the Ducks cashed in on an early power play in the final period to move ahead. After receiving a pass from Selanne, Getzlaf settled the puck above the right faceoff circle and wristed it past screened goaltender Dominik Hasek at 5:24 for his fourth goal of the playoffs.

"It was actually a great pass," Getzlaf said. "He saucered it right through the middle. I just had to wait a little bit for guys to get over to the front of the net. ... I had to wait for our guys to get in their position, wait for their guy to overcommit a little bit there so I could pull it around them."

"He can shoot the puck," Carlyle said. "He doesn't always have to slap it, as he proved tonight. He has the ability to wrist the puck and get pucks on the net. That's the most important thing. From out there, it's not the hardest shot, but it's the shot that's the most accurate or placement of the shot."

Getzlaf gave plenty of credit to teammate Todd Marchant on the play.

"The play started in the corner," Getzlaf said. "Todd Marchant battling in the corner to get that puck out, we got that rim around and Teemu made that pass across the lane there. It didn't stop there. Todd Marchant went and battled, got in front of the net. The goalie didn't see a thing all the way in."

As much praise as Getzlaf dished out, he got back tenfold.

"He's got a chance to be a big-time superstar in this league," Selanne said. "I don't think he realizes how good he can be. ... I can honestly say that Getzie could become the best player in this league."

Following a furious attempt by Detroit to get the equalizer, Anaheim assured itself of another home game when Rob Niedermayer scored into an empty net with 68 seconds left. Niedermayer also was involved in the play that resulted in Pronger's suspension, skating well across the ice to deliver a crushing hit on Holmstrom that drew a five-minute boarding penalty and a game misconduct.

"If you're down 3-1 going to Detroit, you don't even want to think about that," Giguere said. "It was a must-win for us. We approached it that way and we should be real happy. We're back to square one. ... If you work hard, you give yourself a chance. That's all you can ask for, and I think tonight we did that."

Needing to elevate their play without Pronger in the lineup, the Ducks struck early. Corey Perry intercepted a bad pass by Todd Bertuzzi just inside the Red Wings' blue line and reversed field, skating to the top of the right faceoff circle before beating Hasek low to the stick side with a slap shot just 97 seconds into the game.

"Bertuzzi tried to make a cross-ice pass," Perry said. "It was either me knock it down or they had a 3-on-2 or 4-on-2. The defenseman had a step on me, so I just tried to get my stick in the way and it hit my stick. I turned around and fired it.

"To get the first goal within the first five minutes was huge for our team. It was a big confidence boost for the whole team for the rest of the game."

Detroit, which outshot Anaheim, 15-8, in the first period, tied it less than two minutes later on a turnover by Giguere. After stopping a clearing attempt along the right wing boards, defenseman Chris Chelios threw the puck in front, where Daniel Cleary redirected it past the netminder at 3:29 on Detroit's first shot of the contest for his first tally in eight games and third overall this postseason.

Inserted into the lineup in place of Pronger, Ric Jackman restored Anaheim's lead during a power play midway through the opening session. Appearing in his first career playoff game, the defenseman received a feed from Getzlaf at the top of the slot and unleashed a wrist shot that deflected off Hasek and into the net with 8:14 remaining for a 2-1 edge.

"It was very exciting," the 28-year-old Jackman said. "Any time you can enter yourself into a game and help your team get two points, it's a fantastic feeling.

"I'm more excited about the win. ... It's such a special feeling. I just wanted to be part of that."

Selanne doubled the advantage late in the period with his first goal of the series, whacking in a bouncing puck from low in the right circle with 89 seconds remaining.

"As a goal-scorer, it's really tough sometimes when you can't score," Selanne said. "But it's nothing that I haven't faced before. You just have to work hard and believe that those goals are coming. ... We need everybody, and tonight it was a little bit my turn."

"You make your own breaks," Chelios said. "They worked hard out there. Their goals came from in front of the net, where they outnumbered us and got the opportunities. We've got to be better."

Atoning for his earlier miscue, Bertuzzi began Detroit's comeback in the second. With Todd Marchant in the penalty box for slashing, Robert Lang made a pass from behind the net to Bertuzzi, who slipped the puck by Giguere from the doorstep at 7:48, drawing the Red Wings within 3-2.

A phantom hooking call on Niedermayer allowed Detroit to knot the contest with 4 1/2 minutes to go. With Giguere flat on his chest, Cleary jammed the puck over the former Conn Smythe Trophy winner from near the right goalpost to complete his first career multi-goal postseason performance and forge a tie.

"Not taking anything from Detroit, they played a solid second period," Anaheim defenseman Sean O'Donnell said. "But we felt that we kind of gave it back a little bit with the power plays. We have to find a way to not do that and not shoot ourselves in the foot."

Giguere kept the game even with three minutes left in the period, making a brilliant glove save on Valtteri Filppula during a shorthanded breakaway. The Red Wings again outshot the Ducks, compiling a lopsided 16-6 advantage in the session.

"(Giguere) did a good job," Cleary said. "We got a lot of shots on him, but he stopped them. We've got to put the puck behind their defense and get behind Giguere."

Inspired by Giguere's performance, the Ducks did not allow the squandering of the two-goal lead get the better of them.

"We still had an opportunity," Anaheim defenseman Scott Niedermayer said. "We still had 20 minutes to go out there and try to win a hockey game. That's all our focus was about, not what happened in the second. It was just about what we had an opportunity to do in the third period."

Detroit had a golden opportunity to take its first lead of the game early in the third but was unable to convert during a 5-on-3 advantage that lasted 95 seconds, registering just one shot on goal.

"If we had scored on even one of (the penalties), it would have been a whole different game," Red Wings left wing Henrik Zetterberg said. "Our line had some chances, but we didn't put the puck in the net."

"We had the chances but couldn't score," Detroit's Kris Draper added. "It was disappointing, (but) you can't look back at this time of year."








  • PLAYOFFS
    NHL FINAL 1ST 2ND 3RD TOTAL
    --- --- --- -----
    DETROIT 1 2 0 3
    ANAHEIM 3 0 2 5 FINAL
    GOAL SCORING:
    1ST PRD: ANA - COREY PERRY 3 (UNASSISTED) 1:37
    DET - DANIEL CLEARY 3 (CHRIS CHELIOS) 3:29
    ANA - (PP) RICHARD JACKMAN 1 (RYAN GETZLAF, TEEMU SELANNE)
    11:46
    ANA - TEEMU SELANNE 4 (TODD MARCHANT, FRANCOIS BEAUCHEMIN)

    May 17 11:39 PM


  • PLAYOFFS
    NHL DETROIT 3
    ANAHEIM 5
    3RD PRD: ANA - (EN) ROB NIEDERMAYER 3 (TRAVIS MOEN, SCOTT NIEDERMAYER)
    18:52

    Red Wings vs. DucksMay 17 11:34 PM
  • 0
    roots
    RUWTbot Took away 15 roots

    Red Wings vs. DucksMay 17 11:34 PM
  • 15
    roots
    RUWTbot Added 15 roots

    Red Wings vs. DucksMay 17 11:31 PM


  • PLAYOFFS
    NHL DETROIT 3
    ANAHEIM 4
    3RD PRD: ANA - (PP) RYAN GETZLAF 4 (TEEMU SELANNE, FRANCOIS
    BEAUCHEMIN) 5:24

    Red Wings vs. DucksMay 17 11:12 PM


  • PLAYOFFS
    NHL END OF THE 2ND 1ST 2ND 3RD TOTAL
    --- --- --- -----
    DETROIT 1 2 3
    ANAHEIM 3 0 3 END OF THE 2ND
    GOAL SCORING:
    1ST PRD: ANA - COREY PERRY 3 (UNASSISTED) 1:37
    DET - DANIEL CLEARY 3 (CHRIS CHELIOS) 3:29
    ANA - (PP) RICHARD JACKMAN 1 (RYAN GETZLAF, TEEMU SELANNE)
    11:46
    ANA - TEEMU SELANNE 4 (TODD MARCHANT, FRANCOIS

    May 17 10:47 PM


  • PLAYOFFS
    NHL DETROIT 3
    ANAHEIM 3
    2ND PRD: DET - (PP) DANIEL CLEARY 4 (TODD BERTUZZI, MIKAEL SAMUELSSON)
    15:36

    Red Wings vs. DucksMay 17 10:40 PM


  • PLAYOFFS
    NHL DETROIT 2
    ANAHEIM 3
    2ND PRD: DET - (PP) TODD BERTUZZI 3 (ROBERT LANG, DANIEL CLEARY) 7:48

    Red Wings vs. DucksMay 17 10:20 PM


  • PLAYOFFS
    NHL END OF THE 1ST 1ST 2ND 3RD TOTAL
    --- --- --- -----
    DETROIT 1 1
    ANAHEIM 3 3 END OF THE 1ST
    GOAL SCORING:
    1ST PRD: ANA - COREY PERRY 3 (UNASSISTED) 1:37
    DET - DANIEL CLEARY 3 (CHRIS CHELIOS) 3:29
    ANA - (PP) RICHARD JACKMAN 1 (RYAN GETZLAF, TEEMU SELANNE)
    11:46
    ANA - TEEMU SELANNE 4 (TODD MARCHANT, FRANCOIS

    May 17 9:48 PM


  • PLAYOFFS
    NHL DETROIT 1
    ANAHEIM 3
    1ST PRD: ANA - TEEMU SELANNE 4 (TODD MARCHANT, FRANCOIS BEAUCHEMIN)
    18:31

    Red Wings vs. DucksMay 17 9:46 PM


  • PLAYOFFS
    NHL DETROIT 1
    ANAHEIM 2
    1ST PRD: ANA - (PP) RICHARD JACKMAN 1 (RYAN GETZLAF, TEEMU SELANNE)
    11:46

    Red Wings vs. DucksMay 17 9:33 PM


  • PLAYOFFS
    NHL DETROIT 1
    ANAHEIM 1
    1ST PRD: DET - DANIEL CLEARY 3 (CHRIS CHELIOS) 3:29

    Red Wings vs. DucksMay 17 9:18 PM


  • PLAYOFFS
    NHL DETROIT 0
    ANAHEIM 1
    1ST PRD: ANA - COREY PERRY 3 (UNASSISTED) 1:37

    Red Wings vs. DucksMay 17 9:15 PM