Published March 06, 2012
ANAHEIM, Calif. – Bobby Ryan scored the tiebreaking goal on a breakaway with 11:51 to play, and Corey Perry netted two goals in the frantic final minutes of the Anaheim Ducks' 4-2 victory over the Edmonton Oilers on Monday night.
Jonas Hiller made 34 saves in his 26th consecutive start for the Ducks, who aren't giving up on their unlikely playoff hopes. Anaheim finished a brutal stretch of six games in nine days in 12th place in the Western Conference with 68 points, five behind eighth-place San Jose.
Perry scored his 200th career goal with 3:20 to play before putting another puck into an empty net with 1:14 left. Jordan Eberle scored a power-play goal for Edmonton in between Perry's goals, but the Ducks hung on to earn their 42nd point since Jan. 1, tying them with St. Louis for the NHL's best record in 2012.
Jason Blake had an early power-play goal for the Ducks, who have won five straight and 10 of 11 over Edmonton.
Shawn Horcoff's slick deflection goal in the final minute of the second period tied it for the Oilers, who lost for the fourth time in five games despite dominating the weary Ducks for most of the final two periods. Nikolai Khabibulin made 26 saves for the NHL's worst road team, but the Russian goalie was heading to the bench for an extra skater when Perry scored his second goal.
Edmonton seemed firmly in control of the tied game before Ryan slipped behind the Oilers and took a pass from Teemu Selanne. Ryan flipped a backhand past Khabibulin while falling flat on his chest on the ice, scoring his 25th goal for the fourth consecutive season.
Selanne's assist put him in a 19th-place tie on the NHL career scoring list with Jari Kurri, his fellow Finn and personal hero who also scored 1,398 points.
Niklas Hagman then jumped on a turnover by former Ducks defenseman Ryan Whitney and fed it cross-ice to Perry, who scored his 32nd goal of the season.
Two days after Anaheim coach Bruce Boudreau ripped the officiating in a loss at Los Angeles, the Ducks weren't called for a penalty until Selanne got a debatable tripping call with 2:47 to play. Edmonton pulled Khabibulin, and Eberle scored during the two-man advantage for the NHL's best power play.
Until their three-goal flurry in the final minutes, the Ducks were relying on Hiller, who stopped all but Horcoff's final deflection during the Oilers' 22-shot second period.
Hiller hasn't taken a game off since Jan. 10 while backup Dan Ellis is out with a serious groin injury, and the Swiss netminder is back in last season's All-Star form, fully recovered from the apparent case of vertigo that sidelined him for the second half.
NOTES: Oilers D Jeff Petry went to the dressing room midway through the third period apparently favoring his elbow. ... Anaheim and Edmonton will meet twice in the first five days of April. ... D Sheldon Brookbank played in his 200th game with Anaheim. He has scored three goals in the Ducks' last 10 games after failing to score in his previous 167. ... Horcoff ended a six-game goal drought. ... Edmonton will finish its two-game road trip Tuesday at San Jose's Shark Tank. Anaheim will begin a three-game trip Thursday in St. Louis.