Ducks sweep away Flames with 3-1 win in Game 4


The Anaheim Ducks completed a series sweep over the Calgary Flames, as the Washington Capitals drew level with the Toronto Maple Leafs.

It was Washington's night, however, as the league's No. 1 team evened up its first-round series with a much-needed - albeit close - 5-4 victory.

When Calgary threatened to gain momentum, Anaheim's leadership and poise prevailed to carry the Ducks to a four-game sweep of the Flames in their best-of-seven Western Conference quarterfinal.

Anaheim has the luxury of rest and recovery ahead of their conference semifinal as they await the series victor between the Edmonton Oilers and San Jose Sharks, which is tied 2-2.

Goaltender John Gibson made 36 saves to redeem himself after being pulled during the second period of Anaheim's come-from-behind 5-4 victory over the Flames in overtime two nights earlier.

Calgary continued to press hard in the second period, and the Flames were rewarded at 16:07 when Monahan batted a pass from Kris Versteeg out of mid-air past Gibson for his fourth power-play goal in four games.

It was a short night for starter Brian Elliott, who was pulled for Chad Johnson after giving up a soft goal at 5:38 of the first period. It would be the first games for both Lazar and Hamilton. Johnson was pulled for an extra attacker with nearly two and a half minutes remaining, and Getzlaf converted an empty-netter in the final seconds.

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The dissatisfaction wasn't necessarily with what happened - Calgary entered its first round series a decided underdog against the Pacific Division champion Anaheim Ducks - but more so with how it happened. And the biggest reason for Boston to worry, not only because two of a possible final three games will be in Ottawa, is the fact that the Sens have now shown they can beat Bruce Cassidy's club in either a blow-for-blow shootout or defensive battle.

He was streaky at times during the season, but ultimately struggled in the latter half of this series, particularly in a Game 3 Flames collapse, before getting the hook after just three shots faced Wednesday.

Elliott, who will be a unrestricted free agent on July 1, was desolate post-game.

The energy started to drain from the Saddledome after Patrick Eaves's harmless-looking wrist shot from a sharp angle banked in off the inside of Elliott's left pad.

"You realize how slim the margin is between winning and losing", Flames captain Mark Giordano said.

"Those guys have been there, they've experienced it and they know what to do in those situations". They found ways to win every game. "If you rewind the series you can see some tipping points where we made some mistakes". "It's not how you imagine things happening".