Jakob Silfverberg scores twice as Ducks beat Avalanche 5-3
DENVER (AP) Now that he has reached the 20-goal mark, Jakob Silfverberg officially feels like a bona fide scorer.
His task from here is to carry that knack for finding the net into the postseason.
Silfverberg scored twice, Corey Perry had three assists and the playoff-bound Anaheim Ducks beat the Colorado Avalanche 5-3 on Saturday.
''I want to be a goal scorer,'' said Silfverberg, who reached the 20-goal plateau for the first time in his NHL career. ''Hopefully I can keep on pushing the same way in the playoffs and help the team both in scoring and defending.''
Cam Fowler, Ryan Garbutt and Ryan Getzlaf also scored for Anaheim, which can win the Pacific Division title with a victory Sunday in Washington. That game is a makeup from January when it was postponed because of a snowstorm.
Really, though, the Ducks don't particularly care who they play, just about how they're playing. This was certainly a good sign.
The coaches ''have had us playing playoff hockey since I've got here,'' said Garbutt, who was acquired from Chicago on Jan. 21. ''We have enough depth, so we can all go play hard and go rolling into the playoffs.''
The Ducks scratched 11 players, but they still had enough punch to jump to a 3-0 lead and withstand Colorado's second-period rally.
Nick Holden, Jarome Iginla and Zach Redmond scored as the Avalanche wrapped up the season by dropping eight of their last nine to miss the playoffs for a second straight year. Before the game, general manager Joe Sakic said coach Patrick Roy will return for another season.
''I never felt in danger,'' Roy said. ''We all have to be better.''
The Avalanche's struggles this season have been two-fold: holding late leads and their play at home (17-20-4).
Trailing 3-0 in the second period, Holden and Iginla scored 32 seconds apart. It was career goal No. 611 for Iginla, moving him past Bobby Hull for 16th all-time. Next up is Sakic, who finished his career with 625 goals.
Anaheim secured the win in the third, with Getzlaf and Silfverberg scoring on shots from the right side that got by Semyon Varlamov. With the game wrapped up, Ryan Kesler blocked a shot and gingerly made his way to the bench.
Anaheim coach Bruce Boudreau wasn't about to let him go back out - not with the playoffs so close.
''He's fine,'' Boudreau said. ''Blocking shots like a mad man.''
There was an ugly high-sticking incident late in the third when Anaheim defenseman Hampus Lindholm caught Matt Duchene in the face. Duchene dripped blood onto the ice, but only left for a brief moment.
After the game, he was headed to the dentist to see if he could save his right front tooth.
A different sort of pain was missing the postseason again.
''It's a terrible feeling. There's nothing good for me right now,'' said Duchene, who scored a career-high 30 goals this season. ''I'm sitting here trying to think of something good to think about and it's pretty hard.''
The Ducks rested quite a few players who were banged up, including Shawn Horcoff, Mike Santorelli and Clayton Stoner. To make sure they had enough players, they recalled five players from San Diego of the American Hockey League. Two of them, Nick Ritchie and Shea Theodore, contributed assists.
Garbutt was walloped at center ice in the first period by Andreas Martinsen. The Ducks center was slow to get up and Martinsen drew a game misconduct penalty for the blow. The penalty proved costly, with the Ducks cashing in when Fowler sent a wrist shot past Varlamov at 14:44 of the first period.
''Nice for us to score on the power play and then contribute myself offensively, for sure,'' Garbutt said.
NOTES: Anaheim goaltender Frederik Andersen served as John Gibson's backup after missing the last five games with a concussion. He could be in goal Sunday. Gibson finished with 29 saves. ... Forwards David Perron (shoulder) and Rickard Rakell (appendectomy) may be back at practice next week, Boudreau said. ... Colorado was missing defensemen Chris Bigras (foot) and Eric Gelinas (elbow), along with forward Nathan MacKinnon (knee). ... Iginla played in his 1,474th game, tying him with Doug Gilmour for 20th on the career list.