ANAHEIM (AP) — Patrick Eaves scored the only goal of the shootout in the fifth round, and Jonathan Bernier capped a 24-save performance with a perfect shootout in the Anaheim Ducks’ 4-3 victory over the Nashville Predators on Tuesday night.
Rickard Rakell scored the tying goal late in the second period for the Ducks, who rallied from a pair of two-goal deficits for a key victory in their playoff surge. Ryan Getzlaf had a goal and two assists, and Nick Ritchie also scored for Anaheim.
Filip Forsberg scored a short-handed goal and Pekka Rinne made 39 saves for the Predators, who have lost three straight.
Colin Wilson and Ryan Ellis scored early goals as the Predators opened a three-game California road trip with their fifth straight regular-season loss at Honda Center.
The Ducks and Predators both began the day in third place in their respective divisions. Both need strong finishes to get back to the postseason, where Nashville eliminated Anaheim in a seven-game first-round series last spring that led to Ducks coach Bruce Boudreau’s firing.
Nashville went ahead early on James Neal’s remarkable pass to Wilson for a backhand goal, his 12th of the season.
Ellis added a power-play goal less than two minutes later, but Getzlaf trimmed Nashville’s lead late in the first period with the captain’s first goal since Feb. 20. Anaheim also snapped an 0-for-19 power play drought over the previous nine games, the longest such single-season streak in franchise history.
Forsberg’s 27th goal of his dynamite season in the second period also was his third short-handed goal and the Predators’ NHL-leading ninth short-handed tally.
Shortly after Forsberg’s latest bit of brilliance put the Predators up 3-1, Ritchie pounced on a loose puck in the crease for his first goal since Jan. 19, ending a 17-game drought.
Rakell then banked a shot off Vernon Fiddler to tie it for the Ducks with his 27th goal of a breakout season.
Rakell and Forsberg lead all Swedish NHL players with 27 goals apiece.
NOTES: Rookie F Ondrej Kase was a healthy scratch for the Ducks after playing in the previous eight games. Jared Boll took his spot in the lineup. … Nashville D Kevin Fiala was scratched. He is scoreless in his past seven games for the Predators after spending the previous month in the minors. … Ducks G John Gibson missed his fifth straight game with a muscle strain. … Anaheim’s power play was 1 for 35 over the previous 13 games.
Predators: At Kings on Thursday.
Ducks: At Blackhawks on Thursday.
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