Awarding the 5 Best Anaheim Ducks Goals in Round One


Now that the sweep is over, let’s give credit where credit is due!

So I’m sitting at work today, and it hit me: tonight would have been Game Five of the Western Conference First Round series between the Anaheim Ducks and the Winnipeg Jets, had the Jets been able to stay alive in Game 4.

Now, it’s just another night that I have to try and find something to hold my interest, biding my time until the Ducks face-off against their second round opponent, either the Calgary Flames or the Vancouver Canucks.


Still, the extra free time I have on my hands has allowed me to come up with this idea:

The 2015 Western Conference Round One Goal Awards!

That’s right: I’m going to hand out some awards to the goals scored by the Anaheim Ducks in their first-round sweep of the Winnipeg Jets, starting with . . .

The Most Satisfying Goal

Sometimes, the universe is just.

Cal it karma, call it what you will, but sometimes, without having to do anything on your own, life serves you a nice, hot helping of “Take that, son!”

In case you forgot, Dustin Byfuglien showed his true colors when he gave Corey Perry a cheap shot following Perry’s second-period goal in Game 3.  Some people wondered why Perry did not try to retaliate at some point against Big Buff – now we know why:

Oh, Dustin: you got dangled.  Clearly, that goal would have been beautiful regardless of who Perry smoked, but the fact that is was Byfuglien being too aggressive, which allowed Perry to absolutely school him on how NOT to play defense – yeah, that made me smile.

PLEASE make sure you watch the full video – every single one of you Anaheim Ducks fans should take a screenshot of the look on Byfuglien’s face after he got owned and make that your profile photo on Twitter.  Priceless.

The Miss Universe of Goals

I doubt I even have to explain which Anaheim goal will win this award: the Emerson Etem goal that knotted Game 4 at 1-all in the first period.  Have we coined the phrase, “Etem alive!” yet?  Because we will from now on – that’s how pretty this goal was!

First of all, the move to get by the first defender (Jacob Trouba) was gorgeous – but how the hell did Etem get that soft backhand off just in time to beat the sliding Ben Chiarot?  That’s the part of the goal that had me amazed when I got a chance to see it in slow motion.  Chiarot nearly blocked that thing, but Etem flicked it off the ice just in time.  That could wind up being the prettiest goal of the entire 2015 Stanley Cup Playoffs right there.

The “What, Me Sweat?” Goal

Game 2.  Under 30 seconds left.  The game is tied, with Game 3 in the sure-to-be-rocking MTS Centre looming.  Anaheim already had to come back from being one goal down – for the second game in a row, no less.  And you know the Ducks sure as hell did not want to head off to Winnipeg with the series tied 1-1.

Enter Mr. Murder, Jakob Silfverberg:

That was cold-blooded, sir.  My hat is off to you!

The “Sticks and Stones Goal

The fans at the MTS Centre decided to greet Ryan Kesler (who spent two seasons playing in Winnipeg for the AHL’s Manitoba Moose) with chants of “Kelser sucks” right from the opening of Game 3.

Well who sucks now, Jets fans?

In two games in Winnipeg, Kesler scored three goals: the game-tying goal in Game 3, and not one but two goals in Game 4 that gave the Anaheim Ducks a comfortable two-goal lead.

Be careful which bears you provoke the next time your team makes the playoffs, folks.

And finally . . .

The Straw That Broke Their Back Goal

You can make the argument that either one of the goals that Kelser scored in Game 4 was the goal that finally broke Winnipeg’s spirit for good, but I would disagree.

See, having already blown two straight games in which they held a lead at some point in the third period, the Jets were bound and determined to keep the Ducks from coming from behind and winning again.  At home, in front of a raucous crowd, the Jets had the chance to hold off the comeback kids and earn their first W of the series.  And even though they blew another third period lead, regulation ended in a tie and the Jets came out flying in overtime.

And then . . .

That goal had to hurt.  No, not just hurt – that goal HAD to have sucked the confidence right out of the Jets.  No, the team didn’t roll over for the Ducks in Game 4, but you could tell that the crowd in the MTS Centre was not nearly as crazy as it had been for Game 3, and the Jets spent the entire game knowing that no lead would ever be safe agsint these Anaheim Ducks.

There you have it – my awards for the goals that Anaheim scored in the first round of the Western Conference playoffs.  Feel free to agree or disagree (you’ll be wrong, ha ha!) in the comments below, and I look forward to doing this again following the next series.

Next: The Ducks Are The Team To Fear in the West