ANAHEIM, Calif. (ESPN.com news services) -- The Minnesota Wild had plenty to prove against the Anaheim Ducks, the team that knocked them out of the playoffs last season and went on to win its first Stanley Cup title.
Sunday night, the struggling Ducks lost the game and winger Todd Bertuzzi.
"That's going to be the thing with us this year," Ducks defenseman Sean O'Donnell said. "When you win the Cup, every team we play -- when we come to town or when they come here -- it's going to be their 'statement game.' We're kind of the measuring stick against other teams now. So I'm sure we're going to get the other team's best effort every single time. We've just got to push ourselves and rise above that."
Bertuzzi sat out the final two periods with what Ducks coach Randy Carlyle said was an apparent concussion. Bertuzzi was hurt when hit by Minnesota winger Derek Boogaard nearly 14 minutes into the game.
"He moved the puck toward the net and Boogaard ... I don't know if he ran down but he took an extra step to come down to hit him," Carlyle said, according to The Los Angeles Times. "His shoulder or arm area caught flush on the jaw of Bertuzzi."
The severity of Bertuzzi's concussion is unknown. He will be re-examined Monday; Carlyle told The Times his player is "highly doubtful" for Monday night's home game against Detroit.
Minnesota's 5-0 start leaves the Wild as the NHL's only team without a loss, and puts them one victory away from matching last season's squad for the franchise's best winning streak from the start of a season. Three of the wins have been shutouts.
Anaheim, meanwhile, fell to 2-4-1.
Jacques Lemaire, the only head coach the Wild has ever had, spent his entire 12-year playing career with Montreal and never started a season better than 4-0 with the Canadiens -- despite winning eight Stanley Cups and scoring the Cup-winning goal twice. So he isn't surprised to see the Ducks getting off to a 2-4-1 start.
"When you win the Cup, that's what happens," Lemaire said. "They're having a slow start, which is normal because of all they went through last year -- and the short summer. But their guys will get their minds on the game and get back to where they should be, and they'll probably finish first in the conference this year."
Giguere, who recorded a franchise-record 36 victories last season and 13 more in the playoffs, faced 25 shots. He sat out the first six games after undergoing surgery on Aug. 6 for a sports hernia.
Rolston scored on Minnesota's first shot of the second period, slapping the puck over Giguere's glove from the top of the right circle at the 2:04 mark. Parrish made it 2-0 at 11:50 of the period.
"I don't want to make too much of this win, but they're the Stanley Cup champions. So we'll keep that in mind and we'll try to keep getting better," Rolston said. "It was a chippy game and a hard-fought game. It was like a playoff hockey game."
The Ducks (2-4-1) vanquished Minnesota in the first round last season. During the pregame stake leading up to the Game 5 clincher at Anaheim, Ducks enforcer George Parros scuffled with Minnesota counterpart Derek Boogaard after Boogaard skated past Chris Pronger at center ice and allegedly elbowed him in the back of the shoulder.
In Game 4 of that series, Minnesota defenseman Kim Johnsson suffered a head injury when Brad May sucker-punched him during a skirmish between two other players during the final 2 minutes. May received a match penalty and a subsequent three-game suspension.
"Everyone knew that they felt like some things happened last year they didn't like, and I'm pretty sure they had this game circled on the calendar," O'Donnell said. "They played a pretty solid game and physically rose to the challenge, but we expected that from them after last year's playoff."
Boogaard and Lemaire refused to shake hands with the Ducks at the end of the series, and the bad blood spilled over into this game -- as expected.
"I wasn't here last year, but one of the things the guys were talking about was showing that team that we weren't going to be pushed around," Minnesota center Eric Belanger said.
Boogaard and May squared off at 14:18 of the opening period right after a faceoff, and Nick Schultz took on Ducks playoff hero Ryan Getzlaf just 70 seconds later.
"I guess it was hyped beforehand, and I guess it lived up to the hype," Rolston said. "Obviously last year, the shot that Brad gave Johnsson we thought was a bit of a cheap shot. But tonight when Boogy lined up with them, Brad answered the bell and did what a tough guy does."
The main event came at 5:36 of the second between Boogaard and Parros, who won on a TKO.
"Everybody respects what George does. He stands up for his teammates," O'Donnell said. "Having guys like George and Brad adds a lot of character to this team and lets the guys know that their backs are being watched."
Just seconds before that brawl, Boogaard knocked down Giguere as he went out to cut down the angle on Stephane Veilleux -- whose point-blank wrist shot struck Ducks forward Mark Mowers as he was skating across the crease behind his goalie.
Both times Minnesota made the playoffs, they were eliminated by Anaheim. In 2003, Giguere shut them out in the first three games of the Western Conference final and giving up one goal in the Game 4 clincher. ... The Ducks were 0-for-8 on the power play, and are 1-for-23 over their last four games.
Information from The Associated Press was used in this report.
Copyright by STATS LLC and The Associated Press
Arena: Honda Center Location: Anaheim, California
Referees: Brad Watson, Gord Dwyer Linesmen: Andy McElman, Vaughan Rody
Attendance: 17,174 (100.0% full)
Team Stat Comparison
Power Play Goals
Power Play Opportunities
Shots on Goal
No scoring this period
Brian Rolston (1)
Assists: Eric Belanger, Nick Schultz
Mark Parrish (1)
Assists: Branko Radivojevic, Mikko Koivu