Final

Anaheim won 4-2 (Game 6 of 6)

Anaheim won 4-2

Game 1: Thursday, April 24th
Ducks4Final
5OT
Stars3
Game 2: Saturday, April 26th
Ducks3Final
OT
Stars2
Game 3: Monday, April 28th
Stars2Final
Ducks1
Game 4: Wednesday, April 30th
Stars0Final
Ducks1
Game 5: Saturday, May 3rd
Ducks1Final
Stars4
Game 6: Monday, May 5th
Stars3Final
Ducks4

Stars 3

 

Ducks 4

 

10:00 PM ET, May 5, 2003

Honda Center, Anaheim, California

1 2 3 T
DAL 1 1 13
ANA 0 2 24

S. Ozolinsh (Ducks - D): Goals: 1, Assists: 1

S. Thomas (Ducks - RW): Goals: 1, Assists: 2

N. Kapanen (Stars - C): Goals: 1, Assists: 1

Ducks reach first conference finals with Game 6 win

ANAHEIM, Calif. (AP) -- The high-flying Anaheim Mighty Ducks are heading to their first conference finals after disposing of another favorite.

Sandis Ozolinsh
Ozolinsh

Defenseman Sandis Ozolinsh scored with 1:06 remaining in a wild third period Monday night to lift Anaheim to a 4-3 victory over the Dallas Stars.

The victory gave the Ducks an improbable 4-2 series win over top-seeded Dallas in the Western Conference semifinals -- after seventh-seeded Anaheim swept defending Stanley Cup champion Detroit in the opening round.

Steve Thomas, who had a goal and two assists, said "surreal'' doesn't begin to describe what's going on with the Ducks.

"Surreal is an understatement,'' said Thomas, acquired from Chicago at the March 11 trading deadline. "Beating Detroit was an accomplishment. Now, to beat the Stars, it is amazing.''

Ducks rookie coach Mike Babcock thought so, too.

"This is beyond our wildest dreams,'' he said.

Dallas coach Dave Tippett was duly impressed by Anaheim.

"The Ducks played really well all series. They play like a team and they don't turn the puck over,'' Tippett said. "They have a great goalie and they give themselves a chance to win every night.''

Anaheim will face the Vancouver-Minnesota winner in the conference final. The Canucks lead that series 3-2.

"I'm just going sit back, watch Game 6 (Canucks-Wild) and get some rest,'' the Ducks' Paul Kariya said.

Ozolinsh's goal, on a rebound of Mike Leclerc's shot from the right circle, came just 4:05 after Dallas' Brenden Morrow tied it.

"Lucky bounces, a lucky rebound that went at Ozolinsh,'' the Stars' Mike Modano said. "It is kind of how these playoffs have gone for us.''

Morrow's goal was reviewed because Sergei Zubov's wrist shot from 55 feet had bounced off Morrow's skate past goaltender Jean-Sebastien Giguere, and would not have counted if Morrow had intentionally redirected the puck with his skate.

That goal counted, unlike the one the Stars thought they had with 7:58 remaining. Stu Barnes put the puck past Giguere at close range, but after a review, the goal was disallowed because officials ruled that the net was dislodged just before the shot.

Defenseman Ruslan Salei had given the Ducks a 3-2 edge early in the third period with his first goal of the playoffs.

Niko Kapanen had a goal and an assist for the Stars, who were trying to become the third team this spring to come back to win a series after falling behind 3-1.

Giguere, who had been sensational in his first postseason but was benched after two periods of the Stars' 4-1 victory in Game 5 on Saturday, had 26 saves as the Ducks finished off Dallas.

Stars goalie Marty Turco gave up the four Anaheim goals while facing 26 shots.

Emulating the Anaheim Angels' run to their first World Series title last fall, the Ducks are on a scintillating postseason roll of their own. Walt Disney Co. owns both the Ducks and Angels, although the company has agreed in principle to sell the baseball team to Arizona businessman Arturo Moreno, and has the hockey team up for sale.

The Ducks are in the postseason for only the third time since entering the league as an expansion franchise in 1993. They were swept by Detroit in the second round in 1997, then the Red Wings swept them again in the first round in 1999.

Anaheim's Stanislav Chistov snapped a 1-1 tie with his third goal of this postseason, in the second period. Skating just in front of the crease, Chistov picked up a loose puck, kept gliding to his right, then looped a backhander over the sprawling Turco.

Thomas' 53rd career playoff goal, his second this year, came when he was alone skating down the left side of the slot. He took Ozolinsh's perfect pass, patiently waited until the Dallas goalie went down and wristed a shot over Turco.

Kapanen set up the Stars' first goal with a pass from the right corner across the crease. Kirk Muller had only to redirect the puck past Giguere.

Game notes


Midway through the third period, the video board showed Scott Spiezio's dramatic three-run homer in Game 6 of the World Series, then showed the Angels' first baseman sitting in a luxury suite holding his son. The caption read, "Game 6 kharma.' The Angels were off Monday. ... Salei's first career playoff goal also was the first scored by an Anaheim defenseman in the team's 10 games this postseason. ... Minnesota came back from a 3-1 playoff deficit to win its series against Colorado this spring, and Vancouver did the same against St. Louis.

Copyright by STATS LLC and The Associated Press

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