Recap: Gibson Ties Record, Pushes Ducks Past Flyers

The Anaheim Ducks wasted no time getting after their 2017 resolutions. Winless at three on three so far this season, they managed to survive the extra frame to eventually down the Philadephia Flyers 4-3 in the shootout thanks to a clutch 51-save performance by goaltender John Gibson.

A 3-1 lead built on the strength of a Ryan Kesler hat trick evaporated just three minutes into the second period. Ducks’ head coach Randy Carlyle immediately yanked Gibson after the third goal, much to the 23-year old’s displeasure.

“Randy said something to me and we had a plan,” was all that Gibson would let on to the Orange County Register after the game, but the angry look on his face after getting pulled would suggest that the interaction was far less cordial.

Perhaps that was just the kick in the rear that Gibson needed, as he was sent back in just a minute later and never looked back, stopping 33 consecutive shots to will his teammates to victory, tying a franchise record for saves in a single game along the way. It wasn’t a good game by any means for the rest of the team, but in a razor-tight Pacific Division, they’ll surely burn the game tape and march ahead.

First Period

Kesler’s wasted no time in resuming his excellent offensive campaign, scoring the first goal of the game at just 7:55. The goal came off of a pretty feed from Korbinian Holzer, who flipped a perfect backhand pass across the slot, allowing Kesler to tap the puck into a gaping Philadelphia net. Holzer has struggled this season, which made the play all the more surprising as he looked more like a savvy playmaker than a bottom pairing defenseman.

The Flyers would quickly riposte thanks to a Travis Konecny goal at 8:14. The tie eventually broke when Kesler notched his second of the night at 16:54, grabbing a loose puck in front and sending it top shelf to allow Anaheim to go into the intermission up 2-1.

Second Period

Anaheim’s leading goal-scorer wasted no time picking up where he left off, scoring his third goal of the night 69 seconds into the period. The raucousness of the Honda Center reached a fever pitch, hats flying down onto the ice. The party was short-lived, however, as the Flyers quickly tied the game, effectively silencing the home crowd.

Anaheim quickly came unhinged. Carlyle pulled an obviously aggravated Gibson, only to put him back in minutes later. It was a decidedly bizarre sequence, punctuating an atrocious period for the Ducks that saw them allow 24 shots on goal while mustering a paltry five shots on the Flyers’ net.

Third Period

After getting flat-out dominated in the second, Anaheim managed a decent effort to close out regulation time. Yet it was the play of Gibson that truly stood out, as he made a number of critical saves to ensure his team a point in the standings.

On a night where they were handily out-shot, the Ducks did manage to keep things close in that department in the third, getting narrowly edged 14 to 10. Even so, it felt as if Philadelphia’s up-tempo style would be too much to handle going into overtime.

Overtime and Shootout

Once again, the Flyers completely controlled play. Jakub Voracek slithered through Anaheim’s defensive coverage to create scoring chances, while rookie Ivan Provorov’s slick skating ensured that Philadelphia maintained control of the puck.

The Ducks couldn’t capitalize on the few chances that they did get, sending the game into a shootout. Gibson capped off a strong night of work by stoning Sean Couturier’s critical attempt, ensuring his team that elusive second point. Corey Perry scored the eventual game winner just prior, freezing Steve Mason with a quick top-shelf wrist shot.

Outside of their goaltending, Anaheim didn’t play well by any means in this one. Though hockey Twitter was able to poke fun at a Carlyle team getting once again badly out-shot, the Ducks have at the very least proven that they’re capable of a much better effort. Gibson’s confidence will surely surge after this one, and maybe Perry will also gain in that department after scoring the shootout winner.

Scoring Summary


ANA –Ryan Kesler (13) assisted by Korbinian Holzer (4) & Ryan Getzlaf (25)

PHI –Travis Konecny (5) assisted by Wayne Simmonds (15)

ANA –Ryan Kesler (14) assisted by Jakob Silfverberg (14)


ANA – Ryan Kesler (15) assisted by Andrew Cogliano (10) & Sami Vatanen (14)

PHI –Sean Couturier (6) unassisted

PHI –Brayden Schenn (11) assisted Claude Giroux (22) & Shayne Gostisbehere (14)


No scoring


No scoring


ANA –Rickard Rakell scored

PHI –Shayne Gostisbehere missed

ANA –Ondrej Kase missed

PHI –Claude Giroux missed

ANA –Cam Fowler missed

PHI –Jakub Voracek scored

ANA –Jakob Silfverberg missed

PHI –Wayne Simmonds missed

ANA –Corey Perry scored

PHI –Sean Couturier missed

THW Three Stars

First: John Gibson (51 saves, tied franchise record for regular season single-game saves)

Second: Ryan Kesler (fourth career hat trick)

Third: Hampus Lindholm (60.71 percent Corsi rating)



Detroit Red Wings at Anaheim Ducks

Honda Center – 7:30 p.m. PST on Wednesday, January 4

Broadcast channels – FSDT & FSW

2016-17 Season Series: Dec. 17 Detroit (6) – Anaheim (4)


New York Rangers at Philadelphia Flyers

Wells Fargo Center – 8:00 p.m. EST on Wednesday, January 4

Broadcast channels – NBCSN

2016-17 Season Series: Nov. 25 New York (3) – Philadelphia (2)