Silfverberg, Kesler lead Ducks to 8-3 thumping of Flames
ANAHEIM, Calif. (AP) The Calgary Flames still haven't figured out how to beat the Anaheim Ducks on the road. Now they'll have at least six more months to think about ending one of the longest droughts in team sports.
Jakob Silfverberg scored twice, Ryan Kesler had a goal and three assists, and the Ducks tied an NHL record for consecutive regular-season home wins over one team with an 8-3 thumping of the Flames on Wednesday night.
Corey Perry, Brandon Pirri, Jamie McGinn, Nate Thompson and rookie Shea Theodore also scored, helping Anaheim take over first place in the Pacific Division with its 23rd in a row over the Flames at Honda Center.
The Philadelphia Flyers won 23 straight over the Pittsburgh Penguins at the Spectrum from 1980-87. The Flames haven't won in Anaheim since Jan. 19, 2004, when Roman Turek made 36 saves in a 5-1 victory and the head coaches were Darryl Sutter and Mike Babcock.
''We want to make this building a tough place to come into, and tonight it definitely was a tough place to come into,'' Kesler said. ''That's a banged-up team and a team that's depleted. They've got a lot of young kids in the lineup that are vying for spots for next year, so they're going to have games like that.''
The Ducks, aiming for their fourth straight division title, are a point ahead of the Los Angeles Kings with six games left on the schedule and trail Dallas and St. Louis by five for the Western Conference lead.
''We're not even talking about that. We're just talking about ourselves playing good,'' coach Bruce Boudreau said.
Anaheim's John Gibson made 13 saves before he was replaced by Frederik Andersen at 8:28 of the second period with a 5-0 lead. Gibson was shaken up in a collision with teammate Hampus Lindholm, but was back between the pipes at the start of the third with a 7-3 cushion and finished with 21 saves after Anderson gave up three goals on five shots.
''It was a minor little hurt - and at 5-0, we thought, OK,'' Boudreau said. ''But then they got three quick ones. So we realized that Freddie wasn't sharp tonight and we put Gibby back in. He was great and he came up with some big saves.''
McGinn's goal was his 22nd this season and eighth in just 15 games since the Ducks acquired him from Buffalo. Pirri's goal was his 14th overall and third in eight games since joining the Ducks in a trade with Florida on Feb. 29, the same day they got McGinn.
Hunter Shinkaruk, Mark Giordano and T.J. Brodie scored for the Flames, who are a league-worst 12-23-3 on the road. Shinkaruk's goal was his first in the NHL.
''It was just one of those nights,'' Brodie said. ''It's definitely frustrating. It's obviously not the way we want to play, and we definitely didn't do ourselves any favors. But you can't dwell on it.''
Anaheim built a 3-0 lead before the game was seven minutes old, driving former teammate Jonas Hiller to the bench after just five shots on net.
''I wanted him to have a great game against his former team, but I don't think it was meant to be,'' coach Bob Hartley said. ''You give them a few freebies from the start, and you know it's going to be a long game. Nothing to take away from the Ducks, but in order to beat them you need a few saves here and there. I thought that by making a change we would get ourselves back in the game.''
Perry got things started just 57 seconds after the opening faceoff with his team-high 32nd goal. Silfverberg scored his first of the night on a short backhander, and Pirri beat Hiller to the stick side with a 35-foot snap shot from the slot.
''To get that three-goal lead was the best thing that could happen to us,'' Boudreau said. ''Their goalie hadn't played in a long time. And to get to him early, you knew his confidence would be shaken.''
The game opened up considerably in the second period, with the Ducks outscoring the Flames 4-3.
''I think it's human nature when you go up 5-0 to let your foot off the gas pedal,'' Kesler said. ''I don't think we let them back in the game, but we were lax at times, but I think we nipped that in the bud in the third period.''
Anaheim swept the five-game season series. The only other teams the Ducks have swept in a five-game season series were the Coyotes and Canucks, both in 2013-14.
The Flames, coming off a 5-2 win at Arizona on Monday, will go an entire season without winning consecutive games in regulation on the same road trip.
NOTES: Fifteen of Anaheim's 18 skaters had either a goal or an assist. ... Thompson's goal ended a 45-game goal drought since his previous one last April 1. . LW Johnny Gaudreau, who leads Calgary with 28 goals and 73 points, missed his second straight game because of an upper-body injury. ... Anaheim C Rickard Rakell, second on the club with 20 goals, sat out due to flu-like symptoms. ... Giordano joined San Jose's Brent Burns and Arizona's Oliver Ekman-Larsson as the only defensemen to reach the 20-goal mark. Ducks LW Andrew Cogliano is two games away from becoming the sixth player in league history to appear in at least 700 consecutive regular-season games.