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

Washington Capitals defenseman Brooks Orpik checks Toronto Maple Leafs centre Zach Hyman at the blue line during second period NHL hockey round one playoff action in Toronto on Wednesday

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

But even though this was a Ducks sweep, this series was close.

Patrick Eaves and Nate Thompson scored early goals and the Ducks hung on for a 3-1 victory over the Flames at the Scotiabank Saddledome to sweep their way into the second round of the Stanley Cup playoffs.

TORONTO - Tom Wilson and T.J. Oshie scored two goals apiece as Washington evened its Eastern Conference first-round playoff series with Toronto 2-2. The Ducks are up 3-0 in the series and they have won six straight meetings with the Flames.

Veteran Brian Elliott struggled in the post-season after being brought over from St. Louis last June to stabilize the position after Calgary's goaltending was worst in the National Hockey League last season.

The Ducks' last playoff sweep came in the first round against Winnipeg in 2015. Anaheim responded with one of the strongest starts we have seen from them in this series.

Just 5:38 after the anthems, Eaves retrieved the puck along the side wall and whipped a low shot from below the hash-marks that somehow squeaked past Elliott.

Elliott, a pending unrestricted free agent, started all four games against Anaheim. Boomer says it's unlikely Brian Elliot or Chad Johnson will be back. Corey Perry's overtime victor deflected off his pad and off the back of a skate.

Elliott acknowledged that the quick hook was "definitely a short leash". John Gibson stopped nearly everything that came his way and looked pretty near unbeatable while the Flames allowed some weak/fluky goals that ended up being the difference. Shea Theodore scored late in the second period to make it 4-2. Calgary controlled much of the play for the rest of the period as John Gibson was forced to stand up to a handful of great scoring chances from the Flames.

Turning around a 3-0 playoff deficit is indeed a rare feat in professional hockey - accomplished only by a handful of teams in the National Hockey League.

In a lot of ways, Game 4 summed up the series as a whole. He has certainly been at his best in the playoffs and made another magician-like pass to Bobby Ryan to set up the only goal of Ottawa's game-four victory. An initial Monahan shot from the slot created a rebound off of Gibson which sent Anaheim's defense into a flurry of panic.

After the Monahan goal, Anaheim made a good effort to push back at the end of the second period and early on in the third. If Edmonton manage to survive the barrage of penalties that are being called against them then you have to wonder if they could do the same against the Ducks, a better team than the Sharks.

ABOUT THE DUCKS: Coach Randy Carlyle did little to quell the uncertainty surrounding the identity of his team's starting goaltender for Game 4, telling the Orange County Register that he's "going to pick one goalie". If they had forced a Game 5, they would have been facing a must-win at their Unhappiest Place on Earth, where they've now lost 29 consecutive contests.

With less than 10 seconds left, Hulkzlaf stepped up at the blue line and blocked a shot, forcing the puck out of Anaheim's zone.

"I don't think we're going to get away with the ineffectiveness we displayed in half the hockey game and come away and have success in another game".

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