ANAHEIM - The Anaheim Ducks looked like little kids jumping up and down with unrestrained joy on the bench and on the ice on Friday night at Honda Center.
A comeback for the ages will do that. It has a way of turning the clock back, letting the years fall away.
The Ducks became the first team in Stanley Cup Playoff history to force overtime when trailing by three goals with less than four minutes remaining in regulation. Ducks forward Corey Perry scored 6:57 into the second overtime to give the Ducks a 4-3 win against the Edmonton Oilers in Game 5 of the Western Conference Second Round.
[RELATED: Complete Ducks vs. Oilers series coverage | Oilers angry, dejected after Game 5 collapse against Ducks]
The Ducks lead the best-of-7 series 3-2. Game 6 is Sunday in Edmonton.
The stage was set for Perry by an improbable comeback that saw the Ducks score three goals in a span of 3:01. Ducks captain Ryan Getzlaf started the rally, cutting the Oilers lead to 3-1 at 16:44, handed off to defenseman Cam Fowler, who pulled the Ducks within a goal at 17:19. Finally, forward Rickard Rakell tied it with 15 seconds remaining in regulation.
Video: EDM@ANA, Gm5: Rakell ties game with 15 seconds left
"We willed it through," Getzlaf said.
The three goals in the final 3:16 of regulation by the Ducks all came with goaltender John Gibson pulled for an extra attacker.
You could say it was a combination of will, luck and a test of nerves.
"We did whatever we had to do," Getzlaf said. "We scratched and clawed at the end and found a way to get ourselves back in that game."
Said Perry: "We've been in this position before in the first round against [the] Calgary [Flames]. Guys were still up on the bench. Guys still had that attitude, 'We can go out and win.' Guys found a way to get it done in the third period."
The test of nerves came with a review of Rakell's goal. He put a backhander past Oilers goalie Cam Talbot, jumping on a loose puck with some players piled up in the crease and around it. It was determined that Oilers defenseman Darnell Nurse caused Ducks center Ryan Kesler to "contact Talbot before the puck crossed the goal line."
"When I saw the replay on the Jumbotron, I didn't really think they could take it back from us," Rakell said. "The way we battled and the way we made every effort we could to get back into that game, there just wasn't any doubt. They can't do this to us."
Video: EDM@ANA, Gm5: Perry ends thriller with goal in 2OT
Rakell turned 24 on Friday.
"It was starting to be a pretty bad birthday there," Rakell said, smiling. "It was a good ending."
For all the struggles Perry has had this season, he has the skill of a gifted goal-scorer. In other words, he can finish. He scored in overtime of Game 3 against Calgary in the first round.
Ducks Coach Randy Carlyle was reflective when talking about Perry.
"The criticism that's been directed at Corey Perry for lack of offensive production over the course of the season … you can't always look at the individual and say he's supposed to do this, he's supposed to do that," Carlyle said.
"The game evolves. People change. The one thing you can't stop is that clock. I found that out early when I was 40 years old.
"The clock started going at warp speed. I'm sure a bunch of you guys feel the same way. The older you get it just seems like the clock speeds up."
Perry, who will turn 32 on May 16, won a Stanley Cup championship in 2007 with the Ducks, playing for Carlyle. Those moments -- and his two Olympic golds medals with Team Canada -- and experience show on a night like this one.
"So why would we think he can't do it now?" Carlyle said. "There's a perfect example of a guy reaching back and getting the job done."