ANAHEIM – Maligned often for his lack of production in the regular season and into the playoffs, Corey Perry found his scoring touch when it was needed to end an epic Game 5 of the Western Conference semifinals.
Perry scored his first goal of the series at 6:57 of the second overtime and the Ducks made an amazing late comeback at the end of regulation worth it in a shocking 4-3 victory over the Edmonton Oilers on Friday night.
The Ducks were on the brink of elimination as they were trailing, 3-0, deep into the third period. It seemed as if Game 6 on Sunday in Edmonton would be one to stay alive and force a deciding seventh game back at Honda Center, where they had already lost twice and seemed destined for a third.
Meanwhile, the Oilers were in sight of the conference finals after a decade-long absence from the Stanley Cup playoffs.But these Ducks are managed to dip into their well of resilience when they appear ready to be counted out.
Ryan Getzlaf and Cam Fowler scored 35 seconds apart within the final 3:16 of regulation and Rickard Rakell’s dramatic goal with 15 seconds left capped a stunning comeback and forced overtime. And after the first 20 extra minutes saw the Oilers get the better of the scoring chances, the Ducks converted on theirs.
Rakell kept the possession alive in the Oilers’ zone by winning a puck battle with Edmonton’s Darnell Nurse. Getzlaf got the puck with some space and gave Perry a pass as he headed toward the net. The winger made a move on Oilers goalie Cam Talbot and slid the puck in past his outstretched left skate.
It was a moment of elation for the Ducks and one of redemption for Perry, who had just 19 goals during the season. His only other goal in the playoffs was the Game 3 overtime winner against Calgary, which also capped a wild rally from three goals down.
Getzlaf started the comeback with a rocket of a slap shot that took another direction on Oilers goalie Cam Talbot after it skipped off teammate Leon Draisaitl’s…