Anaheim Ducks\' Corey Perry, right, and Calgary Flames\' Chuck Kobasew (19) fight during the first period. (AP Photo/Gus Ruelas)
Now it's Wall's turn, and the rookie made quite an impression in his first game with the Anaheim Ducks. With Norris Trophy-winning defencemen Chris Pronger and Scott Niedermayer leading the way, the Ducks limited the Calgary Flames to only 11 shots over the first two periods Sunday and Wall made 19 saves in a 5-3 victory.
"Eleven shots gives you a chance to save some energy in reserve and play hard on every shot you get," Wall said. "It's tougher sometimes, just because you never know when that scoring chance is going to come. So you've got to stay sharp and focused. But having two great defencemen back there helping me out made my job that much easier."
So did Teemu Selanne's two goals. Selanne and Ryan Getzlaf scored on power plays and Samuel Pahlsson also scored for the Ducks, who are off to the best start in franchise history at 17-2-6 and are tied with Buffalo for the most points in the league. Pronger and Francois Beauchemin each had two assists and Todd Marchant scored an empty-net goal.
Anaheim's regular goalies, Jean-Sebastien Giguere and Ilya Bryzgalov, were sidelined because of lower-body injuries. So the Ducks plucked the 21-year-old Wall from Portland of the AHL as insurance in case Giguere couldn't answer the bell.
"It was kind of on short notice, so I didn't really have too much time to think about it - which was a bonus," said Wall, who joined the team Saturday and didn't have a chance to practice. "I just went out there and tried to do the same thing I was doing in Portland, keep my game simple and try to stop the first shot. It's easier to relax after you get that first one."
Wall is the 12th goalie to play for Anaheim, which joined the NHL in 1993-94. The only others who won in their first start with the Ducks were Bryzgalov and Martin Gerber - both winning 3-2 in overtime.
"You wouldn't know it was his first game. He looked so nice and calm and no nerves at all," Selanne said. "I'm so happy for him because I know how nervous it can be to play in your first NHL game, especially at home. He did a great job and gave us a chance to win."
Wall signed with Anaheim as a free agent in September 2005 and was 5-1-1 with a 3.23 goals-against average in seven games this season with Portland. His backup Sunday was David McKee, who has been with the Ducks since Tuesday after being promoted from the Augusta Lynx - Anaheim's developmental affiliate in the ECHL. McKee has yet to play in an NHL game.
Kristian Huselius had two goals and Daymond Langkow scored on a power play in the final minute for the Flames, whose 3-0 win over the Ducks on Nov. 10 in Calgary was Anaheim's first loss in regulation after an NHL-record 12-0-4 start.
Flames' backup goalie Jamie McLennan made 34 saves. But the Flames had another tough night on the power play, and have only two goals in 21 chances over the last four games.
"We need to be better on the road," captain Jarome Iginla said. "It's the same thing we've been saying. Our specialty teams on the road need to be better on both sides. It's such a big part of the game nowadays. We got outworked, and they beat us."
Getzlaf put the Ducks ahead to stay with a 20-foot wrist shot that beat McLennan high to the stick side less than five minutes after Huselius tied the score for the second time. Getzlaf's ninth goal came while Calgary's Byron Ritchie was serving a slashing penalty.
Selanne's first goal of the game gave Anaheim a 2-1 lead at 5:13 of the second period while Calgary's Chuck Kobasew was off for hooking. Pronger was nonchalantly dragging the puck in his own end, then suddenly snapped a long pass that found Selanne breaking across the Calgary blue-line. The nine-time all-star swooped in on McLennan and beat him to the stick side with a short backhander.
Selanne added his 10th of the season and 502nd of his career for a 4-2 lead with 3:50 to play. It was his 78th career game-winning goal and 45th with Anaheim, breaking the franchise record he shared with Paul Kariya.
Notes: There are 20 forwards in the NHL who have played in at least 18 games and have yet to score a goal. The Flames have three of them - LW Jeff Friesen, RW Darren McCarty and C Jamie Lundmark. ... Friesen, who has reached the 20-goal plateau five times in his NHL career and topped out at 31 with San Jose in 1997-98, has scored only four goals in 69 games since the lockout. ... Selanne's goals made him the second player to record 600 points with the Ducks.