Jakob Silfverberg’s goal with 21 seconds left in the third period, a quick shot that sneaked under the right arm of Winnipeg goaltender Ondrej Pavelec, proved to be the difference Saturday as the Ducks rallied for a 2-1 playoff victory over the Jets at Honda Center on Saturday night to take a two games to one lead in their first-round playoff series.
The series shifts to Winnipeg for Games 3 and 4, on Monday and Wednesday.
Silfverberg had a slow start offensively this season but has developed some confidence in his shot, and justifiably so. The Swedish right wing, always considered a responsible player defensively, is evolving into a complete player who could provide much-needed offensive depth.
Frederik Andersen made 28 saves for the Ducks. Pavelec was spectacular in stopping 37 shots.
The Ducks put intense pressure on Winnipeg and finally broke through to tie the game at 1-1 during a power play at 10:43 of the third period.
Fowler and Ryan Getzlaf got the assists.
Jets 1, Ducks 0 (end of second period)
The second period ended with Winnipeg holding a 1-0 lead and having closed the once-wide gap in shot differential. The Ducks’ lead in shots had dwindled to one, 22-21.
A few more stats: the Ducks were credited with 34 hits through two periods, compared to 22 for the Jets. In addition, the Ducks have been credited with 11 blocked shots, to five by the Jets, who have a slight edge on faceoffs, 20-19.
The Jets put the puck in the net first, but the officials had to huddle and the goal was reviewed at the NHL’s situation room in Toronto before it was verified and ruled a goal at 15:43 of the second period.
Defenseman Adam Pardy made a terrific move up the left side and went behind the net before trying to score on a wraparound. Ducks center Ryan Kesler had pushed Winnipeg’s Lee Stempniak into the net and Stempniak’s leg was still entangled with the leg of Ducks goaltender Frederik Andersen when the puck went in. The officials conferred and ruled it a goal.
Kesler was penalized for elbowing at 16:14, but the Ducks killed that off.
A bad clearing attempt by Ducks left wing Matt Beleskey kept the puck in the Ducks’ zone and led to a penalty taken by Kyle Palmieri at 6:08 of the second period. But Winnipeg forward Andrew Ladd was sent off for slashing at 7:14, leaving the teams at four on four and, eventually, giving the Ducks a power play.
A few seconds later, the team announced that center Chris Wagner had sustained an upper-body injury and was doubtful to return.
The Ducks had announced another personnel move earlier, saying they had summoned defenseman Josh Manson from Norfolk of the American Hockey League. His season has ended and he likely will benefit from practicing with the Ducks and being available in case injuries strike.
Ducks 0, Jets 0 (end of first period)
The first period ends without any goals, but it was still entertaining and fast-paced.
Faceoffs were even at 8-8.
The Ducks continue to dominate but they can’t score.
Anaheim killed an interference penalty that was called against Hampus Lindholm at 11:28 and a penalty to Kesler for hitting Tyler Myers in the head.
If comebacks were the Ducks’ trademark this season, so was their inexplicably feeble power play, which ranked 28th with a 15.7% success rate. Although they broke that pattern in Game 1 when they scored two power-play goals, they reverted to their regular-season form in the first period on Saturday.
First, Winnipeg defenseman Adam Pardy was sent to the box for high-sticking Tim Jackman at 5:18. Jets defenseman Tyler Myers joined him there at 6:55, giving the Ducks a five-on-three advantage for 23 seconds.
They did get one good scoring chance, a blast by Corey Perry from the left circle, but they couldn’t cash in. Halfway into the period they had a 14-3 edge in shots but the score remained 0-0.
Greetings from Honda Center, site of Game 2 of the Ducks’ Stanley Cup first-round playoff series against the Winnipeg Jets. The Ducks won the hard-hitting opener Tuesday, 4-2, and there was every indication the hit total on Saturday would match or exceed the 83 credited to players on both sides in Game 1.
“I don’t think either team is going to change. It would be a shock to me if all of a sudden both teams changed what they’ve done all year to be successful,” Ducks Coach Bruce Boudreau said after his team’s morning skate. “If it’s a physical, game, it’s a physical game. They like playing that way. We love playing that way, so I’ve got to believe it’ll be a physical game.”
Ducks defenseman Hampus Lindholm said the first game “was a real battle,” and he expected it to be even tougher Saturday.
“We know they’re going to come out hard, and we’ve got to come out even harder,” he said. “We know some stuff we have to improve to come out on top.
“Every game is going to be physical. It’s going to be a battle. That’s how playoffs are.”
The Ducks were expected to use the same lineup as they did in Game 1, which means goaltender John Gibson and center Nate Thompson won’t play because of undisclosed injuries.
The Jets considered reinstating center Mathieu Perreault, who missed the first game because of an injury. Perreault was considered possible for Game 1 but then didn’t participate in the warmups and didn’t play. He’s scheduled to take part in the warmups again Saturday.
“He'll be a game-time decision,” Coach Paul Maurice said. “We'll see how he feels when he comes back. He felt really good coming off the ice today. We'll make a decision then.”
Games 3 and 4 will be played Monday and Wednesday at Winnipeg’s MTS Center. Should be crazy there for the first playoff hockey in the city since 1996, when the original Jets played there before moving to Phoenix.
The Jets did reinstate Mathieu Perreault to their lineup after he apparently emerged from the warmups unscathed. Their starters and scratches were:
Pavelec; Pardy-Byfuglien; Lowry-Perreault-Stempniak.
Scratch: Hellebuyck, Postma, Ellerby, Peluso, Halischuk, Galiardi, Harrison, Copp, O’Dell and Chiarot.
Andersen; Stoner-Vatanen; Cogliano-Rakell-Silfverberg.
Scratch: Gibson, Holzer, Fleischmann, Wisniewski, Thompson and Sekac.