ANAHEIM -- Devan Dubnyk made 23 saves, and defensemen Matt Dumba and Jared Spurgeon scored 1:41 apart in the second period to help the Minnesota Wild defeat the Anaheim Ducks 2-1 at Honda Center on Sunday.
It was Minnesota coach Bruce Boudreau's first game in Anaheim since the Ducks fired him April 29. Boudreau, who turns 62 on Monday, said he enjoyed coming back to Southern California and reconnecting with old friends.
"I love it," Boudreau said. "... When you win, it's easy to face the questions (about being back). I saw an awful lot of people that I knew and treated me really well when I was here. It was a good birthday present."
WATCH: All Wild vs. Ducks highlights
Though Boudreau said he never mentioned anything about facing his former team to the Wild, the consensus from the players was that they understood the importance of winning for their coach.
"He's candid and he's emotional, he's a human being, and you can tell this game meant a lot to him," Dubnyk said. "It meant a lot to us as well. It was nice to get this one for him."
The Wild (25-9-5) have won 14 of their past 16 games. They are 2-1-1 after a 12-game winning streak, the longest in their history.
Ryan Kesler scored for Anaheim (21-13-8), which lost for the first time in four games. John Gibson made 34 saves.
Video: MIN@ANA: Kesler crashes the net, finishes a rebound
"We gave this one away tonight, and it's not a good feeling," Kesler said. "They're obviously a good team, but saying that, I think we gave away points tonight. We had the better team in the first and third, it was just that second period for a couple minutes there when we gave it away."
Kesler made it 1-0 at 11:44 of the first period when he scored on a rebound. It was his 16th goal of the season, fourth in four games.
Dumba scored on a 5-on-3 power play at 4:39 of the second period to tie the game 1-1, and Spurgeon put the Wild ahead 2-1 at 6:21.
"We had a pretty good first, did a lot of good things, but we had a bad second period," Ducks forward Andrew Cogliano said. "They outworked us, and that's why we took a couple of penalties. They seemed to have a little bit more energy in the second, which is probably unacceptable in terms of the situation. That's when they won the game. We got our game back in the third and probably could've had one."
Nino Niederreiter appeared to score a goal at 1:26 of the third period, but video review confirmed the ruling of the four on-ice officials that Niederreiter used a distinct kicking motion to put the puck in the net.
Ducks center Ryan Getzlaf missed his third straight game with a lower-body injury.
Video: MIN@ANA: Dubnyk makes kick stop late in the 3rd
Goal of the game
Wild forward Jason Pominville, skating left to right above the faceoff circles, dropped the puck to Spurgeon on the move at the left point, and Spurgeon beat Gibson with a hard wrist shot through traffic from the top of the left circle.
Video: MIN@ANA: Spurgeon rips wrister, gives Wild first lead
Save of the game
Cogliano shot toward an open net while falling to the ice after Chris Wagner's backhand pass from behind the net hit off Dumba's skate, but Dubnyk sprawled out to make the save at 9:48 of the second period.
Video: MIN@ANA: Dubnyk stones Cogliano on the doorstep
Unsung performance of the game
Defenseman Sami Vatanen had seven of 21 blocked shots for the Ducks.
Highlight of the game
Dumba beat Gibson inside the left post with a one-timer from the top of the left faceoff circle off a pass from Wild forward Zach Parise.
Video: MIN@ANA: Dumba buries Parise's feed for PPG
They said it
"We got out of sorts and took a penalty. We gave up a 5-on-3 goal, and we don't manage to clear the puck after Cam [Fowler] came out of the box. We still had five guys on the ice, but we never really cleared the puck out of the zone and give them another power-play goal. That was the difference in the game. We weren't physically involved in the game, and mentally it was like we lost ourselves for 15 or so minutes." -- Ducks coach Randy Carlyle
"I don't want to get fired anymore. I don't want to keep getting that experience." -- Wild coach Bruce Boudreau on returning to face his former team
Need to know
Minnesota is 10-5-1 when the opponent scores first. They were 5-25-6 when opponents scored first last season. … The Wild extended their road point streak to 10 games (8-0-2), the second-longest in their history. … Anaheim hasn't scored a power-play goal in five games and is 3-for-27 in the past nine games.
Wild: Host the Montreal Canadiens on Thursday (8 p.m. ET; NBCSN, SNE, RDS, NHL.TV)
Ducks: Host the Dallas Stars on Tuesday (10 p.m. ET; PRIME, FS-SW, NHL.TV)
Video: Dubnyk, Spurgeon lead Wild to 2-1 win over Ducks