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game recap

Ducks increase lead in Pacific

Defeat Flames, move four points ahead for first in division

by Dan Arritt / NHL.com Correspondent

ANAHEIM -- The Anaheim Ducks moved closer to a fifth straight Pacific Division title with a 3-1 victory against the Calgary Flames at Honda Center on Tuesday.

Patrick Eaves, Kevin Bieksa and Chris Wagner scored for the Ducks (44-23-13), and goaltender John Gibson made 26 saves for his first win since Feb. 19.

Anaheim is four points ahead of the Edmonton Oilers and San Jose Sharks for first in the division. Each has clinched a berth in the Stanley Cup Playoffs.

"If we're playing the way we can play, we're a tough team to beat," Bieksa said. "Going in the playoffs, we know if we find ourselves playing [the Flames], it'll be a tough series."

 

WATCH: All Flames vs. Ducks highlights

 

The Flames (44-31-4) have lost 25 straight regular-season games (0-20-5) at Honda Center. Anaheim's 25-game home winning streak against Calgary is the longest against one team in NHL history.

Calgary, which clinched a postseason berth Friday, holds the first wild card into the playoffs from the Western Conference. The Flames and Nashville Predators, who clinched Sunday, each have 92 points, but Calgary has two more regulation/overtime wins (40-38), the first tiebreaker.

Video: CGY@ANA: Bieksa cranks a slapper past Elliott

"There are a lot of things we can build on if this if this is our opponent come playoff time," Flames coach Glen Gulutzan said.

Anaheim defenseman Cam Fowler left the game with a lower-body injury at 6:09 of the third period after a collision with Calgary defenseman Mark Giordano. The Ducks already were missing defensemen Hampus Lindholm and Sami Vatanen, each out with an upper-body injury.

"I hope he's OK. You don't like to see guys hurt," Giordano said. "There was no intent there."

After Bieksa gave the Ducks a 2-1 lead with his third goal of the season at 13:02 of the second period, Wagner scored at 6:43 of the third to make it 3-1.

Gibson started 45 of Anaheim's first 58 games but had played once since Feb. 20, when he sustained a lower-body injury that sidelined him for six games before a setback in his return March 10 caused him to miss another nine.

Calgary goaltender Chad Johnson started for the third time in the past 18 games, but he left with an injury after making his first save with an outstretched left pad at 4:53 of the first period. He was replaced by Brian Elliott, who made 16 saves on 19 shots.

Video: CGY@ANA: Backlund slams home rebound to open scoring

"A weird situation," Elliott said. "I hope Chad's OK ... it was a tough game."

The Flames took a 1-0 lead after Kris Versteeg passed from behind the net to Giordano at the point. Gibson kicked out Giordano's shot, but Mikael Backlund was in position for the rebound and scored at 15:19 of the first period.

It was Backlund's NHL career-high 22nd goal after he had 21 last season.

Eaves tied it 1-1 48 seconds into the second period with his 10th goal in 18 games since he was acquired in a trade from the Dallas Stars on Feb. 24.

After three minor penalties were called in the first and second periods, there were 106 penalty minutes in the third period, all after the Fowler injury.

 
Goal of the game

Anaheim center Ryan Getzlaf won a faceoff in the Calgary zone, sweeping a backhand at the net with Eaves cutting to the crease. Elliott made the save, but Eaves was there to score off the rebound.

Video: CGY@ANA: Eaves finishes Getzlaf's crafty faceoff shot

 
Save of the game

Shortly after the Ducks killed a Flames power play that included 48 seconds at 5-on-3, Calgary defenseman TJ Brodie had plenty of room to skate in alone from the top of the left faceoff circle, but Gibson got his right pad on his shot from close range at 12:32 of the third period.

Video: CGY@ANA: Gibson makes a strong pad stop on Brodie

 
Highlight of the game

Logan Shaw passed the puck from below the goal line to Wagner cutting through the slot, and Wagner scored to give the Ducks a much-needed boost 34 seconds after Fowler left the game because of injury.

Video: CGY@ANA: Wagner chips home Shaw's centering feed

 
Unsung performance of the game

Anaheim defenseman Josh Manson had no points on three shots on goal, but he had three hits and fought Giordano 51 seconds after Fowler was injured. Manson was named First Star. "Hockey's a fast game. Things happen out there, but something needed to be done. I respect [Giordano] for standing up," Manson said.

 

They said it

"It was hard to get that push in the end with everything going on." -- Flames forward Mikael Backlund on the penalty-filled third period

 

"The most important thing, from my perspective as a coach, was to settle things down and focus on the hockey game." -- Ducks coach Randy Carlyle on the third period

 
Need to know

The Ducks and Chicago Blackhawks are the only NHL teams with at least 100 points each of the past four seasons. ... Anaheim is 12-1-1 since Feb. 14 against teams that are in a playoff position entering Wednesday. ... Versteeg had an assist and has seven points (two goals, five assists) in the past six games. ... Getzlaf has 23 points (four goals, 19 assists) in his past 16 games. ... Eaves has eight goals in his past nine games.

 
What's next

Flames: At the Los Angeles Kings on Thursday (10:30 p.m. ET; SN360, FS-W, NHL.TV)

Ducks: Host the Chicago Blackhawks on Thursday (10 p.m. ET; NBCSN, CSN-CH, NHL.TV)

 

Video: Ducks net three unanswered goals to down Flames, 3-1

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