NHL

Wed, Mar 18, 2009 - 10:00 PM ET
Game Recap
 

Selanne's heroics take Ducks over Predators

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ANAHEIM, Calif. (AP)

The only number that mattered to the Anaheim Ducks was the two points they earned in a big overtime victory over the Nashville Predators. Teemu Selanne scored Anaheim's third power-play goal 34 seconds into the extra session for his 1,200th NHL point, rookies Andrew Ebbett and Bobby Ryan also connected with the man advantage, and the Ducks beat the Predators 4-3 on Wednesday night. "It was huge - not just because of the points, but I think the morale was kind of dropping there a little bit because we were losing games at home," Ryan said. "We've felt like we've played good enough to win some games." Corey Perry also scored for Anaheim, Chris Pronger and Ryan Getzlaf each had two assists, and Jean-Sebastien Giguere made 28 saves. With 72 points, the 12th-place Ducks are three behind eighth-place Edmonton in the Western Conference playoff race with 12 games remaining. "We've dug ourselves a pretty big hole, and we're the only ones who can dig ourselves out," Pronger said. "There are too many teams vying for what essentially is turning into probably one playoff spot. So we've got to worry about ourselves and not about getting any help because we're probably not going to get it." Selanne's goal was his 22nd this season and 574th of his career, overtaking Mike Bossy for 18th place on the NHL career list. Pronger earned his 600th NHL point with the assist. Ryan's two points, including an assist on Perry's first-period goal, gave him 45 this season and tied the Ducks' rookie record set by Dustin Penner in the 2006-07 championship season. Joel Ward had two goals, J.P. Dumont had a goal and an assist, and Ryan Suter had three assists for the Predators, seventh in the conference. Captain and leading goal-scorer Jason Arnott missed his fourth straight game because of an upper body injury. Nashville center Vernon Fiddler tripped Pronger with 49 seconds left in regulation, giving Anaheim the power play that carried into overtime. Pronger sent a slap pass from the right point to Selanne at the left of the net for the redirection past rookie goaltender Pekka Rinne. "I was just pump-faking to give Teemu time to get over there," Pronger said. "We kind of made eye contact, so he knew we were going to try that tip play. Scotty (Niedermayer) was going toward the net, drawing their defenseman over there, so I just needed the pump-fake to get a lane open - and then Teemu did the rest." Ward took an unnecessary penalty for tripping Ryan behind the Ducks net with 10:58 left in the third, and the Predators paid for the mistake. Rinne stopped Pronger's wrist shot from the right point, but Nashville defenseman Dan Hamhuis couldn't clear the rebound and Ryan slammed in his 24th goal to put Anaheim ahead 3-2. "We knew they had a really good power play, and they really executed," Rinne said. "Their power play won the game for them. We played an undisciplined game and took some unnecessary penalties." Ward atoned for the costly penalty with his 14th goal, scoring with 2:45 left in regulation. "We needed those two points and we got them, so you have to be happy with that. But I'm still not very happy with how we played," Selanne said. "When you get that 3-2 lead, you shouldn't let the other team score anymore. You've got to play solid and mistake-free." There were 21 seconds remaining on Ryan Whitney's tripping penalty when Anaheim teammate Todd Marchant received a boarding penalty for checking Martin Erat face-first into the glass. Dumont scored his 15th goal with 13 seconds left on the two-man advantage, giving Nashville a 2-1 lead at 6:05 of the second period. The Ducks, 1-for-28 with the man advantage over their previous eight games, tied it at 11:13 of the second with Ebbett's fifth goal. "The power play hasn't been very good lately," said Selanne, who leads Anaheim with 15 power-play goals. "We know we can win games with a good power play, and tonight was a good example." Perry opened the scoring at 4:19 of the first with his 23rd of the season. The Predators tied it at 10:09 when Dumont's wrist shot from the right circle glanced off Ward's body and past Giguere's glove while Marchant was off for tripping Steve Sullivan.

Notes

Anaheim LW Rob Niedermayer has no points in 19 games since his winning goal on Jan. 27 at Phoenix, and he is minus-13 in that stretch. ... The Predators killed off all but two of 36 short-handed situations in their previous 12 games after giving up five power-play goals on six opportunities at Detroit on Feb. 18. ... The Ducks haven't won more than two games in a row since a four-game streak Nov. 22-30. ... The Predators have won only four of 20 games they've played in Anaheim, including three in overtime. ... Ducks D Bret Hedican missed his seventh straight game because of back spasms.
Tagged: Ducks, Predators

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