Senators' Hammond earns 1st NHL shutout in win over Ducks
ANAHEIM, Calif. (AP) Andrew Hammond's road to the NHL was longer than for most goalies. Now that he has arrived, he is determined to stay for a while.
Hammond made 25 saves to earn his first NHL shutout in his third career start, leading the Ottawa Senators to a 3-0 victory over the Anaheim Ducks on Wednesday night.
He gave the credit to his teammates, who blocked 16 shots.
''I think it was more the team in front of me, really,'' said Hammond, who turned 27 two weeks ago. ''I didn't feel that great tonight and I left some rebounds out there.
''It seemed like every time I did, they were clearing them and blocking a lot of shots. They just made it really easy on me to make the first save.''
Hammond, playing because of injuries to Craig Anderson and Robin Lehner, has led the Senators to three straight victories. He has stopped 88 of 91 shots.
''It's something I really didn't see coming probably a month ago, but hockey's a strange sport with goaltenders,'' said Hammond, whose parents were in attendance. ''You just try to be ready if your name does get called.
''I've worked real hard every day in practice since I've been up here, so I felt ready and I'm just trying to make the most of that opportunity now. It hasn't really sunk in yet. I'm just trying to have fun with it and keep enjoying the moment. Anaheim's one of the top teams in the league, so to do it against them is pretty cool.''
It is Ottawa's first three-game winning streak since a four-game run following a season-opening loss at Nashville. The Senators are 14-12-5 since Dave Cameron took over as coach for Paul MacLean, following the team's 11-11-5 start.
Erik Condra and Mika Zibanejad scored against John Gibson, who made 31 saves before Kyle Turris added an empty-net goal in the final seconds. The Pacific Division-leading Ducks were blanked for the third time this season after winning three straight.
''We had chances. It's frustrating,'' forward Corey Perry said. ''We stopped playing our game and they started to get to us in the second period. We have to play better in the second period. You can't come back from 2-0 the rest of the night.''
The closest Anaheim came to scoring was when defenseman Cam Fowler's slap shot from just inside the blue line hit the right post a minute into a power play at 3:52 of the first period.
''I'll give them a little credit, but we're capable of doing so much more offensively. But we're not, and it's maddening,'' Ducks coach Bruce Boudreau said. ''We let them take the play to us and didn't do what we were supposed to do. We got outbattled and out-competed.
''It seems like we're playing to the level of every team we play.''
Condra opened the scoring 10:57 in, redirecting Eric Gryba's slap shot from the right point past Gibson while defenseman William Karlsson was checking him in front.
''We kind of weathered the first 10 minutes,'' Turris said. ''They were all over us, but Hammy played real well and we started to play our game in the second half of the first period.
''We forechecked really well and stayed on them and gave them a hard time coming out of their end.''
Zibanejad scored at 3:23 of the second, converting Mike Hoffman's sharp-angle shot from outside the left circle.
Linesman Steve Miller left the game at 14:25 of the first period after he was struck in the face by the butt-end of David Legwand's stick during a faceoff. He returned for the third period.
Left wing Jiri Sekac made his Ducks debut after being acquired from Montreal for right wing Devante Smith-Pelly on Tuesday. He played 14 1-2 minutes and had one shot.
''It's got to be tough on him,'' Boudreau said. ''He didn't find out he was playing until he got to the rink because we didn't know if we had the immigration stuff.
''He doesn't know his linemates, so it'll be better for him once he gets a couple of practices under his belt.''
NOTES: Ducks G Frederik Andersen missed his eighth straight game because of a neck injury. ... In four meetings between Anaheim and Ottawa since the Ducks traded Bobby Ryan to Ottawa for Jakob Silfverberg, Ryan has a goal and three assists. Silfverberg has no points. ... Gibson thwarted a breakaway by Ryan with less than 7 1-2 minutes to play. Ryan has five goals in 21 games since his hat trick against Buffalo on Dec. 29. ... The Ducks were 0 for 2 on power plays and are 0 for 23 against the Senators since Oct. 24, 2008. ... Perry has six goals in 18 games since his hat trick on Jan. 14 against Toronto.