Ducks keep fighting, defeat Oilers

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[March 29, 2016]  EDMONTON, Alberta -- The Anaheim Ducks look set in net for the playoffs.

John Gibson made 27 saves and Brandon Pirri scored the game winner as the Ducks continued their pursuit of the L.A. Kings and first place in the NHL's Pacific Division with a 2-1 win over the Edmonton Oilers on Monday.

"We've been getting good goaltending for a long time now, it's been a huge part of our success," said Ducks forward Shawn Horcoff of the tandem of Gibson and Frederik Andersen. "Both of them are playing great and you need that, especially on the road. We kind of held on tonight. We had our chances on the power play, but I thought the penalty kill did a good job tonight."

"I felt good," Gibson said. "I thought I was seeing the puck pretty good and when there were rebounds, my guys helped me out and cleared them out of the way."

Corey Perry also recorded a goal for the Ducks (42-23-10), who won their second game in a row to move one point back of the Kings, who were facing San Jose later in the night.

 

"We're slowly getting to where we want to be and tonight is another step in that direction," Perry said.

Nail Yakupov scored in response for the Oilers (30-42-7), who have lost two straight.

"Lately we've been playing some really tough teams and giving them a run for their money," said Oilers goaltender Cam Talbot, who made 23 saves in the loss. "It was a hard-fought game tonight. We never quit, we never gave up. We came into the dressing room after the second period and said we can make a push if we get one quick.

"After that we just couldn't find the equalizer but it was a hard-fought game against a really good team."

The Ducks were able to score on their first shot of the game, as Perry was able to blow a shot past Talbot just four minutes into the first period.

Anaheim took a two-goal lead 13 minutes into the second period as Pirri was able to outmuscle Edmonton defenseman Adam Clendening and beat Talbot on a spin-around shot for his 13th goal of the season.

Edmonton came close to getting a goal back late in the third period, but a Taylor Hall shot deflected off of Gibson and then the post.

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The Oilers made it 2-1 with 8:20 remaining in the third as Hall won a battle off of a draw and sent it to Yakupov, who beat Gibson for his seventh goal of the season.

"I thought we had enough chances and looks around the net to win the game," said Oilers head coach Todd McLellan. "I didn't think we gave up a lot. There was a lot of things I was pleased with as a coach but it does come down to the outcome and we didn't get what we wanted."

NOTES: The Ducks return home on Wednesday to start a four-game homestand against the Calgary Flames. Edmonton is off until Saturday, when they also play host to Calgary... This is the final homestand for the Oilers at Rexall Place, with two games remaining after the Ducks on Monday. The Oilers will move into a new downtown arena for the start of next season... Out with injuries for the Ducks were D Kevin Bieksa (upper body), D Simon Despres (undisclosed) and F David Perron (shoulder). The Ducks saw the return of D Sami Vatanen (upper body) and F Ryan Kesler (personal) for the game. ... Out for the Oilers were D Oscar Klefbom (foot), D Andrew Ference (hip), D Brandon Davidson (knee), F Benoit Pouliot (shoulder), D Eric Gryba (knee), D Adam Pardy (undisclosed) and F Ryan Nugent-Hopkins (concussion). ... Patrick Maroon, who was acquired from the Ducks by the Oilers at the trade deadline came into the game with five points in his last two games and had 11 points in 12 games with Edmonton coming into the contest. Maroon had 13 points in 56 games with the Ducks earlier this season

[ 2016 Thomson Reuters. All rights reserved.]

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