ANAHEIM, Calif. - Teemu Selanne scored his 599th goal to help the Anaheim Ducks snap a five-game winless streak with a 4-2 victory over the Western Conference-leading San Jose Sharks on Sunday night.
Selanne gave the Ducks a scare early in the third period, when his head and left shoulder slammed into the boards after he failed to convert a pass from Saku Koivu and lost his balance. Selanne remained on the ice hunched over for a couple of minutes before making it back to the dressing room under his own power, but did not return. He has an upper-body injury and will be evaluated tomorrow.
Jonas Hiller made 31 saves, Corey Perry started a three-goal first period, Bobby Ryan scored into an empty net with 1:13 remaining, and Lubomir Visnovsky had his third goal in five games since joining Anaheim in a trade with Edmonton on March 3.
The victory salvaged a shred of dignity for the Ducks, who avoided getting swept by their Pacific Division rivals in a six-game season series for the third time.
Joe Thornton and Jamie McGinn scored third-period goals for the Sharks, who began a six-game trip with their second straight loss. They still lead the conference by two points over Chicago and trail Washington by five points in their quest for a second straight Presidents' Trophy. No Western Conference team has had the best overall record in consecutive seasons since the 1997-98 and 1998-99 Dallas Stars.
The Ducks didn't score more than two goals against Evgeni Nabokov in any of the other five meetings. But they connected on three of their first 10 shots against the two-time all-star who surrendered five goals against Nashville in his previous start Tuesday night before his teammates rallied with six in the third period for an 8-5 win.
Perry got his 24th goal at 3:27 of the first, converting a rebound after Nabokov made a leg save on Ryan's scoring attempt from the edge of the crease.
Selanne made it 2-0 at 7:40 with his 21st goal, carrying the puck from the Anaheim zone into the Sharks' end, then leaving a drop pass for Koivu and one-timing Koivu's return feed past Nabokov's glove.
Visnovsky got Anaheim's third goal just 55 seconds before the first intermission, going for the glove side on Nabokov with a 50-foot slap shot that broke off the goalie's left arm and trickled into the net. The Russian has allowed 15 goals in five games with the Sharks since his poor showing against Canada in the Olympics.
NOTES: Ducks C Ryan Getzlaf left the game early in the third because after re-injuring his left ankle, the same ankle that was hurt prior to the Olympics. He is listed as day-to-day and will also be evaluated tomorrow.. ... Three more victories will make Nabokov the second goalie in NHL history with 40 or more in three consecutive seasons. Martin Brodeur, who has a league-record 594 regular-season wins, accomplished the feat with New Jersey from 2005-06 through 2007-08. ... Selanne's assist on Visnovsky's goal was the 646th of his career, breaking a tie with Bobby Orr for 57th place. Orr played in only 657 games, compared to Selanne's 1,174. ... The Sharks were 6-0 against Anaheim in 1997-98 and 1993-94, the Ducks' inaugural campaign. ... Anaheim eliminated San Jose from the first round of last year's playoffs as the eighth seed in the conference after the Sharks entered the post-season with the NHL's best record for the first time in franchise history.