A few more takeaways from the Calgary Flames' 4-3 overtime victory over the Ducks in Game 3 of the Western Conference semifinals. The Flames’ win cut the Ducks’ lead in the series to two games to one.
Yes, it’s a series now
The Ducks were less than 20 seconds away from taking a commanding 3-0 series lead and becoming the third team since 1990 to open the playoffs with seven straight victories.
But hold off on making those hotel reservations in Chicago.
Flames rookie sensation Johnny Gaudreau, who until now had been pointless in the series, tied the game, 3-3, with 19.5 seconds remaining, and the Flames’ Mikael Backlund won it for them in overtime.
Gaudreau’s goal, by the way, was the latest game-tying goal in Flames playoff history, according to the Elias Sports Bureau. Robert Reichel had owned the previous mark, scoring the game-tying goal at 19:13 of the third against the San Jose Sharks in the 1995 playoffs.
Ryan Getzlaf shines in his former home
A banner honoring the junior career of Ducks’ captain Ryan Getzlaf is high in the rafters at the Scotiabank Saddledome, a homage to his impressive four-year tenure with the Calgary Hitmen of the Western Hockey League.
Getzlaf was a such a force in Game 3, you half-wondered, jokingly, if the Flames would decide to cover it up for Game 4 on Friday.
Almost lost in the wild third period and overtime was the fact that Getzlaf had two more assists in the first period on Tuesday, delivering a punishing hit and crushing Flames defenseman T.J. Brodie to set up Corey Perry’s goal to make it, 2-1.
The Captain has been at his devastating best through three games of the series: Getzlaf has eight points through the first seven periods.
Learning curve for the kids
They’ve been impressive and dynamic and now that the national media are getting to see them up close, Ducks’ kid defensemen Hampus Lindholm and Sami Vatanen are drawing more kudos.
Then there are going to be rough nights.
Lindholm and Vatanen experienced that in Game 3. Lindholm, on the power play, lost an edge and fell down, allowing the Flames' Joe Colborne to go in on a breakaway to score, tying it 2-2.
Then Vatanen’s late penalty for delay of game -- shooting the puck over the glass -- set the stage for the Flames’ Gaudreau to tie it at 3. Mistakes like that happen ... even to veterans.