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Everybody in the arena knew who was eventually getting this puck, and Gaborik capitalized with his third goal of the playoffs while shorthanded.
The arena was silent, but not for long. With Teemu Selanne still screaming from the bench because Nick Schultz's clip of his left eye went unnoticed by the referees, Getzlaf gave Anaheim its one-goal lead back by scoring on a backhander before the front end of Boogaard's first minor was over.
"We gave up a shorthanded goal, and those can kill you," Getzlaf said. "But we bounced back the way we wanted to and it just exploded from there."
Boogaard didn't want to comment after the game, but Lemaire defended him, saying, "I thought Boogey did a great job tonight. The four minutes that he got, it was accidental. He was just trying to lift [Huskins'] stick to get the puck. It was an accident."
The Ducks iced it with 9:31 left in the third period when Corey Perry, possibly Anaheim's best player all night, jammed Dustin Penner's rebound underneath Backstrom after Penner drove the net.
It was an appropriate symbol of the night. Perry was allowed to stand unscathed in front of the Wild's net, while Wild players hit the deck anytime they came within breathing interest of Giguere. On that 5-on-3, in particular, Parrish was sent violently to the ice three times by Pronger.
"They just ran out of juice," Lemaire said of the Wild. "At a time there, I could see it was kind of tough. Skating was not good as it could be. Guys were a little tired."
Despite the pregame get-together, tempers didn't boil over at the start of the game because Pronger scored so early. It forced both teams to actually play hockey.
The Wild took six shots in the first period, with the first coming 7:20 into the game on Brent Burns' shot from the red line. Of the Wild's 27 shots in the game, few could be construed as scoring chances. Few came from underneath the top of the circles because the Ducks were near perfect positionally and collapsed down low to protect Giguere.
"Through the neutral zone, their defensemen are up on you before you even get to the blue line, so you have to get it in behind them. It takes a lot of energy."
Lemaire praised Backstrom, who made 35 saves and kept the Wild in the game with several outstanding stops. "He was special tonight," Lemaire said.
The Wild will fly home Friday morning, take a day or so off and then pack up its lockers.
It was a disappointing ending for a team that looked poised to make a playoff run before running into a team that was simply better.
Asked to categorize this season, Lemaire said, "We'll go through a few meetings and talk about it and we'll let you know. I want my head to be fresh."
|San Diego||12/12/13 7:25 PM|
|Washington||12/15/13 12:00 PM|
|San Francisco||12/15/13 12:00 PM|
|Seattle||12/15/13 12:00 PM|
|Chicago||12/15/13 12:00 PM|
|Houston||12/15/13 12:00 PM|
|Buffalo||12/15/13 12:00 PM|
|New England||12/15/13 12:00 PM|
|Philadelphia||12/15/13 12:00 PM|
|Kansas City||12/15/13 3:05 PM|
|NY Jets||12/15/13 3:05 PM|
|Arizona||12/15/13 3:25 PM|
|New Orleans||12/15/13 3:25 PM|
|Green Bay||12/15/13 3:25 PM|
|Cincinnati||12/15/13 7:30 PM|
|Baltimore||12/16/13 7:40 PM|
|New York||45||3rd Qtr|
|San Antonio||59||3rd Qtr 11:19|
|Boston||33||2nd Qtr 7:09|
|Oklahoma City||36||2nd Qtr 5:46|
|Minnesota||43||2nd Qtr 5:52|
|Milwaukee||9||1st Qtr 7:16|
|Ottawa||1||2nd Prd 10:38|
|Tampa Bay||3||2nd Prd 9:36|
|New Jersey||3||2nd Prd 10:07|
|Los Angeles||4||2nd Prd 12:59|
|St. Louis||0||1st Prd 12:27|
|NY Islanders||9:30 PM|
|Cincinnati Christian||56||2nd Half 8:53|
|Mars Hill||62||2nd Half 11:32|
|Chowan||43||2nd Half 10:06|
|Oakland||38||2nd Half 13:06|
|Monmouth||52||2nd Half 13:05|
|Kansas||21||2nd Half 18:09|
|Green Bay||26||2nd Half 13:02|
|Albany||41||2nd Half 19:49|
|Fordham||52||2nd Half 10:46|
|Hartford||32||2nd Half 15:59|
|Central Conn St||46|
|Evansville||43||2nd Half 13:45|
|Hiwassee||41||2nd Half 14:52|
|Central Penn College||41||2nd Half|
|Savannah State||2||1st Half 14:51|
|South Dakota||8||1st Half 15:25|
|Dartmouth||6||1st Half 12:27|
|IUPU-Ft Wayne||7||1st Half 15:54|
|Ark-Little Rock||19||1st Half 11:45|
|South Dakota St||15||1st Half 11:04|
|CS-Bakersfield||8||1st Half 13:48|
|Idaho State||8:00 PM|
|Boise State||8:00 PM|
|Colorado College||8:05 PM|
|Pacifica College||9:00 PM|
|Army||12/14/13 2:00 PM|
|Albany||50||2nd Half 12:36|
|Bryant||56||2nd Half 13:04|
|UMass Lowell||37||2nd Half 16:21|
|Hofstra||25||2nd Half 15:57|
|Georgetown||51||2nd Half 10:30|
|SE Missouri St||5||1st Half 13:53|
|Tulsa||10||1st Half 15:13|
|Incarnate Word||2||1st Half 13:29|
|(23) Gonzaga||10||1st Half 13:33|
|Northern Iowa||4||1st Half 13:10|
|Chattanooga||14||1st Half 11:29|
Poll: What's the best sports rivalry involving a Twin Cities sports team?