Final

Series (Game 4 of 4)

Anaheim leads 4-0

Game 1: Wednesday, October 5th
Ducks5Final
Blackhawks3
Game 2: Sunday, November 27th
Blackhawks1Final
Ducks3
Game 3: Sunday, February 12th
Blackhawks1Final
Ducks4
Game 4: Friday, March 17th
Ducks2Final
Blackhawks1

Ducks 2

(32-21-12, 76 pts)

Blackhawks 1

(21-36-9, 51 pts)

8:30 PM ET, March 17, 2006

United Center, Chicago, Illinois

1 2 3 T
ANA 0 1 12
CHI 0 1 01

A. McDonald (Ducks - C): Goals: 2, Assists: 0

V. Vishnevski (Ducks - D): Goals: 0, Assists: 2

N. Khabibulin (Blackhawks - G): Saves: 28, Save Pct.: .933

McDonald scores twice in Ducks' win over Blackhawks

CHICAGO (AP) -- Andy McDonald was at the center of the Anaheim offense in a win over the Blackhawks.

McDonald scored twice and Jean-Sebastien Giguere made 22 saves to lead the Mighty Ducks to a 2-1 victory against Chicago. Vitaly Vishnevski assisted on both goals for the Anaheim, which has won four of five.

The Ducks, with 76 points, moved one behind eighth-place Los Angeles and the final Western Conference playoff spot.

McDonald, who has a career-high 24 goals, has been centering a line with Teemu Selanne on the right and, recently, Chris Kunitz on the left. He got a chance to jump into the middle of the Mighty Ducks' top line after Sergei Fedorov was traded to Columbus early in the season.

On Friday, McDonald made the most of it.

"I don't think it's any one thing," McDonald said. "Obviously playing with Teemu, and Chris has been involved with our line and he's helped us a lot.

"This year, I've gotten the opportunity to play in key situations. The coaching staff has shown a lot of confidence in me and I've been healthy. I've struggled with injuries earlier in my career."

Anaheim coach Randy Carlyle wasn't completely pleased with his team's effort, but was impressed with McDonald's contribution.

"We got away from our game plan in the second period, but we did find a way to get ourselves back in the hockey game," he said. "But we won't critique a win. We felt we earned our opportunities.

"He's [McDonald] been given an opportunity because he's earned it. It doesn't hurt to play with Teemu Selanne, with the way he's playing right now. We found a combination that's working for us."

Giguere sealed the win by apparently getting a piece of Patrick Sharp's point-blank shot in the final seconds that then deflected off the post.

"I heard the ping and then heard the buzz of the big horn," Giguere said. "I am just happy that I got lucky on that play, and sometimes you do get lucky. I think we got a big win out of it."

Kyle Calder scored for the Blackhawks, who have lost four of five. Chicago has three wins in 12 games. Nikolai Khabibulin stopped 28 shots, but the Blackhawks were swept 4-0 in the season series with the Ducks.

"The effort for the most part was there, but it was a funny game," Chicago coach Trent Yawney said. "[Sharp] hit the crossbar. That epitomizes our season. We've lost 20 games by one goal."

Anaheim outshot Chicago 14-4 in a scoreless first period, although the Blackhawks failed on several close-in chances late in the frame.

McDonald opened the scoring at 3:15 of the second, completing a 2-on-1 with Selanne. McDonald held the puck instead of making a pass, then beat Khabibulin with a low shot.

Calder tied it 1-all at 6:33. His shot from the right circle deflected off the elevated stick of Ducks defenseman Scott Niedermayer and past Giguere's stick side.

McDonald gave Anaheim a 2-1 lead at 1:57 of the third. After his shot from the right circle was blocked by Chicago's Duncan Keith, McDonald grabbed the loose puck and fired a rising shot past Khabibulin on the short side .

Game notes


McDonald's previous goal-scoring high was 10. He's in his fifth NHL season. ... Anaheim D Jason Marshall and LW Travis Moen were healthy scratches. ... The Ducks played the second of a four-game road trip. They have only seven home games left out of 17. ... Khabibulin started his fifth straight game since returning from a sprained left knee.

Copyright by STATS LLC and The Associated Press

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