The Ducks seemingly had the Minnesota Wild on the ropes. Two goals within a 25-second span in the second period had the Ducks buzzing and the Wild backpedaling. Then, the game took a dramatic turn. Minnesota reeled off four unanswered goals, three of which in the third, to defeat the Ducks 4-2 at Honda Center.
After a scoreless first period, the Ducks came out strong in the middle frame with goals from Rickard Rakell and Jacob Larsson that sent the crowd of 15,526 into a frenzy. Rakell finished his own rebound for his fourth goal and 10th point of the season just 1:27 into the period.
Video: MIN@ANA: Rakell buries his own rebound
Then, 25 seconds later, Larsson scored his first career NHL goal in his 69th career game on a wrist shot from the left point that made its way through traffic.
Video: MIN@ANA: Larsson wrists home first NHL goal
"It's a good feeling, but obviously it would've been nice if we had a win, but a good feeling," said Larsson. "Nice to have it over with."
Minnesota entered the game with a 1-8-0 record on the road and a 4-9-1 mark overall. This was the opener of a four-game road trip. The opportunity seemed prime for the Ducks to get back on track after a disappointing overtime loss on Sunday vs. Chicago.
Instead, the Wild tallied unanswered goals from Kevin Fiala, Mats Zuccarello, Eric Staal and Zach Parise.
"Tonight was a tough loss," said Rakell. "We kind of felt like we gave them their goals, and especially when we have that power play, I have to know the time better and know they have a guy coming out of the box, and not force that play in the middle. Other than that, I thought we played a good game. We were hungry on the puck and hungry on the forecheck. We definitely had our chances tonight."
The loss dropped Anaheim's record to 9-7-1. John Gibson took the loss in a 22-save performance. Alex Stalock turned aside 29 of 31 shots for the Wild.
Prior to the game, Ducks captain Ryan Getzlaf was recognized with a pregame ceremony in honor of 1,000 career games - a milestone achieved on Sunday vs. Chicago. Joining him at center ice was wife Paige, kids Ryder, Gavin, Willa and Mac, Ducks owners Henry and Susan Samueli, teammates Jakob Silfverberg and Cam Fowler, and NHLPA representative Shane Doan.
Video: MIN@ANA: Ducks honor Getzlaf for reaching 1,000 games
The Ducks won't play again until Sunday when they host the Edmonton Oilers on Military Appreciation Night at Honda Center.
"The one thing I've felt here over the last week is we're a tired team," said Ducks head coach Dallas Eakins. "I think we've been kind of hanging on by a thread and we need some much needed practice time. So, we'll use the next four days for both."