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Hockey

It was a strange win over the Avalanche but the Ducks will take it

Nick Ritchie
Ducks winger Nick Ritchie is congratulated by teammates after scoring a goal against the Avalanche during the third period Thursday.
(Jae C. Hong / Associated Press)

Snowmageddon game, meet Glassgate. The Ducks seem to up the ante every season in terms of unusual occurrences, so it was true to form when there was a 45-minute delay in Thursday’s game because of a broken pane of glass. 

The Ducks also made a minor trade and lost Jakob Silfverberg to an upper-body injury on a strange night at Honda Center. So there was a collective exhale when Nick Ritchie scored with 2:02 remaining for a 2-1 win against the Colorado Avalanche.

Ritchie grabbed a loose puck, off Nikita Zadorov’s turnover, and fired from the high slot for his 11th goal of the season. Colorado’s Jarome Iginla had a glorious chance in the final seconds, but Ducks defenseman Sami Vatanen got his stick on the attempt and the puck flew wide just before time expired.

“We rallied around it, and it ended up being not too bad,” Ritchie said on getting the win after the delay. “I guess it helped us in the end.”

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Last Jan.22, the “Snowmageddon” ice storm on the East Coast forced an 11th-hour postponement of a game at the Washington Capitals that was replayed in the regular-season finale.

This wasn’t nearly as harrowing. It bordered on comical.

Both teams tried to stay loose and warm during the delay by skating around, but the initial delay lasted so long that opposing players chatted each other up at the red line. Ducks defenseman Kevin Bieksa briefly retreated to the dressing room during the stoppage and returned to a seat in the tunnel.

It started with 9:48 remaining in the second period when a shot by Colorado’s Eric Gelinas cracked the glass behind the net. Twenty minutes passed before a maintenance crew brought out replacement glass, which was soon hauled away because it had to be cut to accommodate the camera behind the net, according to the Ducks.

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Officials decided to start the second intermission and add the time on for a third period that lasted 29:48. It was in compliance with Rule 77.3, which states that “if a delay takes place with longer than five minutes remaining in the first or second period” the next intermission will be taken, according to the NHL. 

“In that situation, you just want to keep yourself warm and go into the locker room and keep your body ready,” defenseman Hampus Lindholm said about the delay. “You don’t want to be coming out there cold and get injured or something.”

About 45 minutes passed between action, and play was stopped 9:48 into the “third” period so the ice could be dry scraped. 

When hockey resumed, Colorado took a 1-0 lead on Gabriel Landeskog’s power-play goal at 14:04 of the second period.

Lindholm answered with his third goal this season, a power-play goal on a shot from the left point at 7:17 of the third period that triggered huge cheers in the building.

It restored order.

“Of course, it’s a little weird,” Lindholm said. “We’re just really thankful for the fans to keep [staying] in the game and not leaving and cheering us on there.”

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Minor trade

The Ducks acquired right wing Max Gortz from the Nashville Predators for left wing Andrew O’Brien in a minor league trade announced during the game.

Gortz, 23, was the second-leading scorer for the Milwaukee Admirals last season and has 51 points in 102 career minor league games. O’Brien, 24, has 30 points in 135 games in the minors.


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