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Ducks rout Flames, 8-3, and take over division lead

t was snowman in a perfect storm.

The Ducks were surging and hungry for first place in the Pacific Division. The Calgary Flames were depleted and rebuilding. The outcome was predictable but the final score brought out the hockey term “snowman,” for eight goals, and it allowed the Ducks to grab a piece of history Wednesday.

la-sp-ducks-flames

Seven players scored and 15 made the scoresheet in an 8-3 victory against Calgary at Honda Center.

The Ducks jumped the Kings for first place in the division with their 23rd consecutive regular-season home victory against Calgary to match the NHL record set by Philadelphia against Pittsburgh from 1980 to 1987.

The Ducks haven’t been able to explain their dominance against Calgary and don’t put much stock into the record, but it speaks to how much they value protecting home ice.

“We want to make this building a tough place to come into, and tonight definitely was a tough place to come into,” Ryan Kesler said.

Kesler recorded a career-high four points with a goal and three assists, and Jakob Silfverberg’s second goal was the Ducks’ eighth, one shy of the franchise record.

Will there be any goals left over for Friday?

“We’ll see,” Kesler said.

The night was marred briefly when goalie John Gibson left after getting run into by teammate Hampus Lindholm just before the halfway point. But Gibson returned for the third period after Frederik Andersen replaced him.

“He had a minor little hurt, and at 5-0 we thought, ‘OK, lets [take him out],” Coach Bruce Boudreau said. “But when they got three quick ones, we realized Freddie wasn’t sharp tonight.”

The Ducks were slightly shorthanded, too, when they scratched right wing Rickard Rakell because of flu-like symptoms and defenseman Josh Manson because of an upper-body injury.

But that didn’t matter.

Calgary, which last won in the regular season in Anaheim on Jan. 19, 2004, was without leading scorer Johnny Gaudreau and dressed three players who had a combined 17 games of NHL experience. Add a shaky start by former Ducks goalie Jonas Hiller, and the rout started early.

Corey Perry kicked it off with his 32nd goal 57 seconds in the game, and Silfverberg and Brandon Pirri gave the Ducks’ a 3-0 lead on the opening seven minutes. Jamie McGinn scored 21 seconds into the second period to give Anaheim four goals on nine shots.

The only hiccup was the three goals given up in the second period.

“Obviously it was some sloppy plays out there and it was a lot of goals, and it’s maybe not the way we’re used to playing, but I think we did a good job in the third of bouncing back and not giving up too much,” Silfverberg said.

Rookie defenseman Shea Theodore scored and Nate Thompson got his first goal this season.

“I think it’s probably a load off his shoulders,” Boudreau said of Thompson. “When you’ve been in the league a long time and you’ve gone as long as he has without having some positive effects, offensively, it’s tough. For him to score a goal, I think that’s going to make him a better player.”

Ducks sign two

The Ducks announced the signings of goalie Kevin Boyle of the University of Massachusetts Lowell and center Kalle Kossila of St. Cloud State to one-year and two-year entry-level contracts, respectively.

Boyle was the Hockey East Assn.’s co-player of the year and Kossila was fifth in the nation with 54 points in 41 games.

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