Ducks beat Philadelphia shootout, 5-4, after late lead gets away

 Ducks beat Philadelphia shootout, 5-4, after late lead gets away
Ducks defenseman Sami Vatanen (45) celebrates after scoring against the Flyers in the second period Wednesday night in Anaheim. (Chris Carlson / Associated Press)

Corey Perry's scoring touch, hidden throughout a game that threatened to slip away Wednesday, emerged when it mattered most.

Perry's shootout goal to the left of Flyers goalie Steve Mason was followed by Anaheim goalie Frederik Andersen's stopping a shot by Philadelphia's Claude Giroux, giving the Ducks a 5-4 shootout victory over the Flyers at Honda Center.


"We battled hard," Perry said after his team overcame the Flyers' tying goal in the final seconds of regulation and a 3-1 deficit. His team also halted a power-play rut.

The Ducks (16-6-5) felt sick that the game went to overtime.

With the Ducks up 4-3 in the final minute and Philadelphia's net empty, Anaheim's Nate Thompson scooted a pass in front of the net that center Devante Smith-Pelly couldn't find.

The missed opportunity haunted the Ducks when the Flyers took the puck and pressured Andersen, with forward Wayne Simmonds following his own shot with a tying goal.

Just 2.6 seconds remained.

"They're a desperate team and they got a big goal for themselves," Ducks forward Andrew Cogliano said of the Flyers (8-13-4). "That was probably as big as it gets for them, to push it into [overtime].

"We have a keep-on-pushing mentality."

The Ducks' 4-3 lead came in the third period on a goal by forward Patrick Maroon, who stomped in a mad celebration and pounded the glass.

Besides its being a late go-ahead score, there was reason.

The Ducks' gifted power-play unit had ended a stunning 0-for-19 slump when Maroon followed an up-close Ducks shot with 5 minutes 2 seconds left in the third.

"It was in Perry's feet," Maroon said. "I tried to find it there and I hit it between his feet and got a lucky bounce there. It got in."

Ducks Coach Bruce Boudreau said, "The best power plays in the world shoot the puck … then they go to the net and they get ugly goals. And nobody ends up noticing it at the end, but they look at the numbers and the power play is usually a good one."

The teams answered a hard-hitting first period by opening up with five goals in a second-period span of 5:29.

Philadelphia had a 3-1 lead.


"We never thought we were out of it," Boudreau said.

Ducks center Ryan Getzlaf closed the blitz of goals by blasting in a shot, and Anaheim tied the score when defenseman Sami Vatanen scored his seventh goal with 53.2 seconds remaining in the second.

Vatanen pushed the puck to the net, then saw Maroon send him a sudden pass from behind the net.

Boudreau said Vatanen is playing like a fourth forward.

"And every team now has a guy that comes up with the play," Boudreau said.

"Sami's been doing it quite well."

Each team tallied 15 hits in the first, as the Ducks missed nine shots and had six others blocked.

Before Andersen allowed three goals on 10 shots in the second, the Ducks looked to provide him some backup by signing their former draft pick and 2006 and 2007 playoff standout Ilya Bryzgalov to a tryout contract.

Bryzgalov, in contract talks with the team, will probably replace Jason LaBarbera, who suffered a broken hand in Saturday's loss at San Jose and will miss two to three weeks.

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