Another So-Cal hockey meltdown-this time it’s the Ducks who QUACKED UP in Qwunchtime!

Nashville celebrates a 'Ducky' finish in Anaheim

As coach Vince Lombardi so memorably once yelled out from the sidelines “What the hell’s going on out there”?…first it was “The Choke on Chick Hearn Court” (aka the F-up on Figueroa) by the hockey Kings against the rejuvenated Sharks and just a few nights later the Ducks give up 2—I said 2, 3rd period leads and lost in overtime on journeyman (and ironically ex-King) Jerred Smithson’s rare game-winning goal falling 4-3 to Nashville at Honda Center. And that after the Ducks’ Saku Koivu couldn’t win a faceoff eventually leading to Preds captain Shea Weber’s tying goal with just 36 seconds left in the 3rd period. It’s unquestionably the biggest win in Predators franchise history and as heartbreaking a loss for the Ducks in several years as they now trail this opening round Stanley Cup playoff series 3 games to 2.

Even Bobby Ryan can't wait to see the replay of his amazing goal!

Jason Blake (another ex-King) scored his first 2 goals of the postseason in this one but nothing can compare to Bobby Ryan’s phenominal unassisted goal at 0:40 seconds into the 3rd period for a brief 2-1 Anaheim lead. Ryan (who’s fresh off his 2 game suspension vacation) could’ve won an audition for Dancing with the Stars with all the moves he put on to skate through and around defenseman David Legwand (who’s still looking for his dropped stick and jockstrap) and then somehow get that puck past Pred’s goalie Pekka Rinne. Just look at my picture to the right where Bobby is skating back to the bench while looking up at the video scoreboard admiring his own replay-and I can’t blame him as we’ll all be seeing that one time and time again for eternity!

But despite the major disappointment Ryan was his usual personable and classy self after the game and even had fun with me when I talked about his dancing on skates leading into his highlight reel goal…

Bobby Ryan with Ted Sobel:

40 year old Teemu Selanne who assisted on Blake’s 2nd goal looked almost stunned when he talked to us after the game and you have to now wonder was this Selanne’s last game ever in front of the home fans (or as you could say, the finnished flash?)…

Teemu Selanne with Ted Sobel:

Anaheim goalie Ray Emery stood on his proverbial head in the first 2 periods to keep his Ducks afloat in this one but then couldn’t keep the puck out of his net in crunch time (certainly not all his fault either)…and he was a standup guy when I approached him in front of his locker…

Ray Emery with Ted Sobel:

For the 2nd time this week I had to deal with a highly dejected locker room…and fortunately as I was posting these interviews for your listening pleasure back up in the press box I finally ran into a smiling person in the building. And he’s longtime friend and the Predators play by play voice since their inception (and former Kings colorman) Pete Weber (no relation to Captain Weber as far as I know?) who was on his way out and kind enough to give us a few minutes on what was one of his most memorable games to call. And you won’t find many who can put his thoughts into such entertaining sentences as Pete…

Pete Weber with Ted Sobel:

So it’s on to Nashville for Sunday’s game 6 in a do or be dead Ducks situation while the shocked Anaheim fans are getting down on their goalie pads praying for a game 7 in Anaheim next week. And it’s almost hard to believe that just a few days ago there was great hope around here that both the Ducks and Kings might advance into the 2nd round? But tonight we could be less than 48 hours away from each So-Cal team being eliminated as we might be stuck with watching Versus (wherever you can find it?) for our hockey pleasures during the next several weeks…as it’s looking like ‘the Puck Stops Here’ for good this season~ 😦

About Ted Sobel

Award winning sportscaster/journalist covering major events around the world since 1973. Please check out my new book 'Touching Greatness' and deep audio vault---and follow me on Twitter and Instagram (@tedsobelsports).
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