Ducks blow big lead, but win in OT

BY foxsports • November 20, 2009

Scott Niedermayer scored a power-play goal 52 seconds into overtime and the Anaheim Ducks beat the Tampa Bay Lightning, 4-3, on Thursday night after blowing a three-goal lead.

Corey Perry extended his career-best point streak to 13 games with a power-play goal and two assists, and Ryan Getzlaf and Teemu Selanne each had a goal and two assists for the Ducks in the first game of a seven-game homestand.

Ryan Malone was sent off for cross-checking Getzlaf just 11 seconds into overtime, and Niedermayer got a drop pass from Getzlaf in the high slot before snapping off a 45-footer that beat Mike Smith high to the glove side and ended Anaheim's four-game losing streak. Niedermayer has 13 career overtime goals, the most by an NHL defenseman.

Jeff Halpern, Steven Stamkos and Martin St. Louis scored for the Lightning, and Malone and Steve Downie each had two assists.

Smith made 23 saves in his first start since Nov. 2 after five consecutive starts by Antero Nittymaki, who leads the league in goals-against average (1.93) and save percentage (.939). The last time Smith played, he gave up five goals on 18 shots at Philadelphia and was pulled in the second period of a 6-2 loss.

Anaheim's Todd Marchant got a tripping penalty with a second left in the second period after upending Halpern, and St. Louis cashed in 1:38 after the intermission on a power play for the equalizer. He got the puck at the left point from Downie, moved laterally with it and took a slap shot that whizzed past Petteri Nokelainen's right leg and beat a screened Jonas Hiller to the glove side.

Ryan gave the Ducks a 3-0 lead at 6:52 of the second period, scoring on a wrist shot to the glove side after Joffrey Lupul barely kept the puck from sliding back over the Tampa Bay blue line. Ryan's ninth of the season came David Hale cut him with a high stick and received a double-minor.

But just 49 seconds after Ryan scored, it was suddenly 3-2 as the Lightning struck twice in a span of 18 seconds. Downie had the puck behind the net and was tripped from behind by Sheldon Brookbank, but still managed to throw it out in front and Halpern converted the pass for his second goal of the season.

Stamkos added his 14th goal, taking a swipe at the puck while falling down and tipping it past Hiller's glove after he was stopped on a one-timer from about 10 feet.

Smith received an interference penalty at 4:22 of the first period after he tried to play the puck behind the net, lost it on a poke-check by Perry and then pinned him against the boards. The Ducks opened the scoring just 3 seconds after Alex Tanguay finished serving Smith's penalty, with Selanne converting Getzlaf's pass through the crease for his 11th goal and 590th of his career.

Getzlaf made it 2-0 at 18:12 of the first, just the fourth shot on net by the Ducks to that point. It was a mirror image of his earlier collaboration with Selanne, only this time they were on opposite sides of the crease during a power play while Lukas Krajicek was off for interference.

NOTES: Anaheim D James Wisniewski, playing in his 200th NHL game, left the ice for good with a bruised right foot after blocking a shot by Paul Szczechura before the midway point of the first period. ... Ducks D Steve Eminger was scratched because of back spasms. C Saku Koivu missed his fifth consecutive game (groin) and C Ryan Carter sat out his fourth straight (bruised foot). ... Stamkos has three goals in his last seven games, following a six-game goal streak in which he scored eight times. ... Ducks C MacGregor Sharp made his NHL debut.

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