It's usually not a good sign when the captain can't remember if his team had scored four goals in a game this season.
The Ducks' slow-drip offense tends to clog the memory, and Ryan Getzlaf was reminded that they've done it a few times this season. The latest was the most significant yet, a 4-1 victory against the
That represents the final guaranteed playoff spot, and the Ducks got there with an offensive outbreak by their standards to support goalie John Gibson and extend their post-Christmas break run to 4-0-1.
"We kept pushing and tried to build something here, and luckily enough, we're still in it," Getzlaf said.
The Ducks' four goals at
Rickard Rakell had another dynamic game with a goal, an assist and two highlight-reel opportunities, and Corey Perry scored his 14th goal.
The Ducks took leads of 2-0 and 3-1 to loosen up from their usual tight-game feel.
"I think it allows the guys to relax a little bit and just play," Ryan Kesler said. "We've accepted that we haven't been a high-scoring team this year.
"Obviously, we're frustrated, but it's not frustrating us. We're going to have to win those 1-0 games, and tonight we broke out."
Gibson's shutout streak ended at 184 minutes 30 seconds on an own goal by Carl Hagelin, who deflected Tyler Myers' shot into the net early in the second period.
"As long as we win, it doesn't [matter]," Gibson said.
It was the third-longest shutout streak in Ducks' history, and Gibson spread it out over four appearances. Anaheim scored one goal in each of his previous two games, and Gibson acknowledged the support.
"I think no matter who you ask, the more goals you score, the more fun it is for everybody," Gibson said. "[We're] fortunate tonight to get the goals. It's not going to come every night, but when it does, it's more fun for everybody."
Perry scored a goal on a rush for the Ducks with a slap shot that beat goalie Michael Hutchinson on the far side on a three on two for a 3-0 lead five minutes into the second period.
Rakell made a terrific individual effort six minutes into the game. He stripped Ben Chiarot of the puck off a faceoff, drew two defenders as he circled to the high slot and chipped in his own rebound for his eighth goal.
Defenseman Kevin Bieksa scored his first goal as a Duck on a first-period power play with a slap shot from the top of the left circle as Kesler screened Hutchinson.
It added to a complete game for the Ducks. Anaheim's two goals given up in its last four games matched the fewest given up in franchise history over a four-game stretch.
But Coach Bruce Boudreau wasn't making any declarations on the first of eight games at home although they fully supported their stingy defense.
"We're not out of the woods by any stretch of the imagination, but we are playing a little better," Boudreau said.
Defenseman Clayton Stoner was "banged up" and couldn't play, Boudreau said.