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Ducks focus on positives from marathon loss

by Curtis Zupke / NHL.com

ANAHEIM -- Anaheim Ducks teammates Francois Beauchemin and Kyle Palmieri have different experiences when it comes to marathon games.

Beauchemin played in a quadruple-overtime game in the 2003 Calder Cup Finals.

"It's funny, they made a T-shirt about it because it was the longest game in [American Hockey League] history that we ended up losing, unfortunately," Beauchemin said.

Palmieri played a long peewee game at his home rink in New Jersey.

"It was a little different format," Palmieri said. "I think it went 4-on-4, 3-on-3, 2-on-2, 1-on-1, and I remember losing and I was out there for the 1-on-1. That was probably the longest game before this."

"This" is a reference to Anaheim's 3-2, triple-overtime loss against the Chicago Blackhawks in Game 2 of the Western Conference Final on Tuesday. If the Ducks were feeling the effects of fatigue, they could playfully reference the aforementioned stories Wednesday before they flew to Chicago with the best-of-7 series tied 1-1.

Game 3 is Thursday at United Center (8 p.m. ET; NBCSN, CBC, TVA Sports).

Now the question is how Anaheim will respond after such a dramatic loss, one that could impact the Ducks physically and mentally.

"I'll tell you that [Thursday] after I see how I feel in the game," Beauchemin said. "But I think maybe for some guys, mentally it's hard. It's tough to lose, but you've got to get over it."

Beauchemin, Anaheim's ice-time leader, played 46:29 on Tuesday. His previous NHL high was 41:14 in a double-overtime game against the Vancouver Canucks in 2007.

Captain Ryan Getzlaf played 38:29 minutes, just shy of the 38:59 he played in a triple-overtime win against the Detroit Red Wings in Game 2 of a 2009 second-round series.

"I felt pretty good out there for the most part when you're talking about playing six periods of hockey," Getzlaf said. "It's not normal for anybody. As hockey players, we don't do that very often. I felt pretty good overall."

Getzlaf, Beauchemin, forward Corey Perry and defenseman James Wisniewski are the remaining Ducks from that 2009 game and have other considerable Stanley Cup Playoff experience to draw from. Anaheim has handled the adversity that comes with an overtime loss in the playoffs well; the Ducks' only other postseason loss came in overtime against the Calgary Flames in Game 3 of the second round. The Ducks rebounded with a 4-2 road win in Game 4.

"We've done it all year," Anaheim coach Bruce Boudreau said. "I would be surprised if we weren't able to rebound and play a really great game than if it went the other way around. I've been with this group for a long time now. You can see it. They were, rightfully so, very angry [Tuesday] night. Not disappointed, but angry. That's a good thing."

The Ducks had their chances to win, hitting the post or crossbar three times in the overtimes, making it easier to dwell on what might have been. But Anaheim has put the loss behind it, at least publicly.

Forward Andrew Cogliano said the Ducks are not getting enough credit for how well they have played in the first two games. Beauchemin said he saw the missed chances in Game 2 as a positive.

"The way I see it, it's more the way we could have won," Beauchemin said. "We were right there. It's not hard to move on because, like I said, we had our chances. It's not like we were really out of it. Nothing to do with the game. It could have been 2-0, but it's 1-1, and we're going to Chicago."

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