Ice road warriors: Anaheim Ducks keep trend alive winning at Edmonton Oilers

By Steven Sandor, The Sports Xchange
Continuing the trend in the series, the Anaheim Ducks won on the road in their series against Edmonton. The road team has won each game so far. Photo courtesy Anaheim Ducks via Twitter.
Continuing the trend in the series, the Anaheim Ducks won on the road in their series against Edmonton. The road team has won each game so far. Photo courtesy Anaheim Ducks via Twitter.

EDMONTON, Alberta -- In the first two games of their Western Conference second-round series, the Anaheim Ducks launched 76 shots at Edmonton Oilers goalie Cam Talbot but beat him just four times. The Ducks lost them both games in Anaheim.

In Game 3, Anaheim scored on each of its first two shots, then got a bad-angle game-winner from Christopher Wagner after the Oilers stormed back from three goals down.


The game of hockey giveth, and it taketh away. Talbot only stopped 22 of 28 shots on the night, and the Ducks won 6-3 Sunday.

The road team has won every game of this series so far, leaving Anaheim trailing 2-1 in the best-of-seven series. Game 4 is Wednesday in Edmonton.

Talbot fell on his sword after the game.

"They caught us on a sneaky play there right off the bat, and I didn't make the save, really, that I needed to," he said. "And I didn't make a lot of other saves during the game that I needed to. That's on me to make some of those big saves that I've been making that I didn't make tonight."


At the other end of the ice, Anaheim goalie John Gibson stopped 24 of 27 shots, including a series of fantastic stops late in the second period.

Jakob Silfverberg, who scored twice and added an assist, said it was all about getting traffic in front of Talbot. Sure, the shots are nice, but the Ducks felt Talbot saw too much of the puck over the course of the first two games.

"We just didn't get that traffic in front of the net, so that was obviously something we tried to do more of today," Silfverberg said. "My first goal was an example of that. Hampus (Lindholm) just throws a puck in there, and I just managed to get a stick on it. (Ryan) Kesler's goal, it wasn't a fancy shot from me, but he battles in front but he gets rewarded for it."

Josh Manson and Shea Theodore each had two assists for Anaheim.

The Oilers scored three consecutive goals to tie the game in the second period, but Wagner scored 9:28 into the middle period to put the Ducks ahead for good.

With Anaheim leading 4-3, Gibson made several big saves late in the second period and early in the third to keep the Oilers from tying the game. Then, at 4:56 of the third, Silfverberg got his second goal of the game. The Oilers challenged the goal, and, after a lengthy video review, the call was confirmed.


Series supervisor Don Van Massenhoven told the pool reporter that none of the video angles could show whether Silfverberg was offside or not, so the call on the ice stood.

"I was wondering a little bit, wondering what happened, but I thought I was fine," Silfverberg said. "It's tough, even I couldn't really tell on the video. I thought it was kind of close. ... Anytime (the review) goes longer and longer, you get more and more nervous. But it paid off for us, and it was a good goal."

That was the marker that stabbed the Oilers in the heart.

Kesler then made it 6-3 at 10:38.

Oilers center Connor McDavid, who was moved to a line with Jordan Eberle and Milan Lucic in the first period, didn't see the ice after the final goal.

The Ducks opened fast.

First, Rickard Rakell buried a breakaway chance just 25 seconds in. Then, at 5:33, Silfverberg found the loose puck off of Lindholm's shot to double the lead.

Anaheim's first-period onslaught continued at 11:51. The visitors upped their margin to three after Oilers defenseman Darnell Nurse made a poor pass attempt from behind his own goal that went right to Ducks captain Ryan Getzlaf, who snapped a shot over Talbot's shoulder.


"We didn't take advantage of the energy that was around us, (allowing a goal) 25 seconds in," Oilers coach Todd McLellan said. "By the first (TV) timeout we were down by two. By the second timeout we were down by three."

Then, cue the Oilers comeback.

Edmonton got one back with 39.5 seconds left in the period, with a shot taking what looked to be a deflection off of Ryan Nugent-Hopkins and Patrick Maroon before going in, though the official scorer later removed Nugent Hopkins' assist.

The Oilers made it 3-2 just 1:28 into the second. David Desharnais' pass went off the skate of Anton Slepyshev, flew into the air and hit Ducks defenseman Theodore before fluttering across the goal line.

Then it was McDavid's turn to work his magic. At 8:40, in the Ducks zone, McDavid turned on a dime, opened up a shooting lane and fired a wrist shot just inside the post.

Anaheim reclaimed the lead just 48 seconds later when Wagner stuck a bad-angle shot through Talbot's legs to make it 4-3.

Getzlaf said his team did well to deal with the emotional roller coaster.

"We're talking about emotional games, there's ups and downs, there's different things," he said. "That goal at the end of the first hurt us. I thought had we come in here (to the locker room) with a three-goal lead, everybody's feeling good and doing the same thing. Again, our group showed a bit of resiliency there. We bounced back. We got a big one from Wagner there, and away we went."


Kris Russell collected two assists for Edmonton.

NOTES: After Game 3, the Ducks headed to Kelowna, British Columbia, for a two-day mini retreat ahead of Wednesday's Game 4. The Ducks want to get out of rabid pro-Oilers environment in Edmonton during the break in the series. .... The Rogers Place sound system didn't work in the pre-game ceremony, so the 18,000-plus fans in attendance sang both "The Star-Spangled Banner" and "O Canada." ... Ducks D Kevin Bieksa, who left Game 2 with an injury, was out Sunday. LW Nick Ritchie, who missed Game 2 with an illness, returned for Game 3. ... The Ducks also scratched D Korbinian Holzer, RW Jared Boll and LW Nicolas Kerdiles. ... The Oilers scratched D Eric Gryba, C Matt Hendricks, RW Iiro Pakarinen and LW Jujhar Khaira.

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