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Ducks try to pull even with Devils

  |   June 2, 2003 at 9:01 AM
ANAHEIM, Calif., June 2 (UPI) -- After winning in overtime Saturday, the Mighty Ducks of Anaheim seek to pull even with New Jersey Monday night in Game Four of the Stanley Cup Finals.

The home team has won the first three games of the best-of-seven series for the first time since 1987, and the Ducks hope the trend continues.

Home ice has been especially important for the Stanley Cup finalists. The Devils are 10-1 at home in the postseason. The Ducks are 7-1.

New Jersey outscored Anaheim, 6-0, in the first two games of the series at Continental Airlines Arena as Martin Brodeur recorded two shutouts.

Unfortunately for the Devils, Brodeur gave the Ducks a gift goal in Game Three and defenseman Ruslan Salei won it at 6:59 of overtime, wristing a shot from the top of the left circle past the glove of Brodeur.

"It's only one win, so we still got a lot of work to do," said Salei, whose other playoff goal came in Game Six of the Western Conference semifinals against Dallas.

Anaheim goaltender Jean-Sebastien Giguere made 29 saves and broke Patrick Roy's record by extending his overtime shutout streak to 167 minutes, 4 seconds.

Giguere was at the top of his game for the first time in the series, and he also became the first goalie in NHL history to win his first six postseason overtime decisions.

Brodeur mishandled a seemingly harmless dump-in by defenseman Sandis Ozolinsh with 5:13 left in the second, giving the Ducks a 2-1 lead. Brodeur had dropped his stick and was helpless as Ozolinsh's shot hit the stick and caromed through his legs.

It came just 45 seconds after Patrik Elias beat Giguere on a breakaway.

"That's the break we needed," said Anaheim Coach Mike Babcock. "Sometimes, that's what it takes to turn around a series."

Game Five is Thursday at East Rutherford.

© 2003 United Press International, Inc. All Rights Reserved. Any reproduction, republication, redistribution and/or modification of any UPI content is expressly prohibited without UPI's prior written consent.
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