Corey Perry did what All-Star forwards do -- score big goals at the right time.
Perry fired him his 37th of the season 1:32 into overtime, Ray Emery made 31 saves in his second straight victory and the Anaheim Ducks beat the Los Angeles Kings 2-1 in the 100th Freeway Faceoff on Saturday night.
But Anaheim earned its seventh win in nine games when rookie defenseman Cam Fowler got the puck to Perry in full stride with a long pass to mid-ice. Perry beat Jonathan Quick from the top of the right circle with a slap shot for the All-Star forward's sixth goal in four games.
The Ducks pulled into a ninth-place tie with Calgary in the Western Conference standings with 83 points. The clubs meet at Honda Center on Sunday night.
"I didn't have much left," Perry said. "I was at the end of a shift. I saw one defenseman back so I figured I might as well go. I just closed my eyes and shot it and it found a way in."
Emery was outstanding against the Ducks' local rivals in just his second start for Anaheim, which signed him last month to fill in for injured All-Star Jonas Hiller. Emery has allowed only two goals in his first seven periods with Anaheim, although he fell just short of his 12th career shutout.
"We battled tonight and we have another one tomorrow (against Calgary), so it was a huge relief," Emery said.
Quick stopped 23 shots for the fifth-place Kings, who have lost two straight after a perfect four-game trip. Los Angeles still earned its 86th point to move ahead of Dallas.
"It seems like everyone's playing each other right now, so everyone wants to scoreboard watch," Kings defenseman Willie Mitchell said. "It's just instinct. But we really have to worry about our preparation and our focus. If we keep doing the things like we did tonight, I like our chances to get in."
Los Angeles and Anaheim met for the first time on Dec. 2, 1993, with the Kings winning 3-2 on two goals by Jari Kurri. Both Southern California clubs have a strong chance this spring to qualify for the playoffs in the same season for the first time -- and this result helped both teams, who conclude their seasons with a home-and-home series.
The Ducks scored late in the first period when a dump-in pass by Dan Sexton bounced crazily on the Staples Center ice, ricocheting away from Jack Johnson and landing in front of McMillan. The speedy rookie forward skated past Johnson and beat Quick for his 10th goal.
Quick stopped Jason Blake on a breakaway after L.A. defenseman Drew Doughty fumbled the puck for the opening minute of the second period. Wayne Simmonds' apparent goal for the Kings was then waved off when Alexei Ponikarovsky was called for goaltender interference after driving to the net, although Ponikarovsky appeared to be checked into Emery by Ducks defenseman Luca Sbisa.
Emery patrolled his crease with more aggression after that, checking Justin Williams to the ice during a power play late in the period.
Brown scored his 23rd goal moments after a power play ended, banging the puck into an open net after Michal Handzus fired it onto his tape with a perfect pass from the boards.
Kings forward Dustin Penner faced the Ducks for the first time since returning to Southern California, where he won the Stanley Cup alongside Perry and Ryan Getzlaf with Anaheim in 2007. Penner then signed an offer sheet with Edmonton, which traded him to Los Angeles last month.
"The guys played hard today … it was a good game," Kings coach Terry Murray said. "I liked everything that was going on right from the very start of the game. It was a playoff-like atmosphere. The building was alive and both teams came to compete hard. I thought we had an excellent third period … we just couldn't find a way to finish at the end."Material from wire services and team media was used in this report
|Ryan Smyth Hooking against Jason Blake|
|Ryan Getzlaf Hi-sticking against Matt Greene|
|Luca Sbisa Boarding against Dustin Brown|
|Dustin Brown Interference against Francois Beauchemin|
|Andy Sutton Hooking against Dustin Brown|
|Andy Sutton Cross checking against Wayne Simmonds|
|Alexei Ponikarovsky Interference on goalkeeper against Ray Emery|
|Toni Lydman Hooking against Dustin Penner|
|Cam Fowler Delaying Game-Puck over glass|