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Red Wings shoot down Ducks, Canes stun Bruins

DAN Cleary scored a late winner to send the Detroit Red Wings into the Western Conference finals with a thrilling 4-3 Game 7 victory over the Anaheim Ducks on Thursday.

In Eastern Conference action, Scott Walker's first playoff goal proved to be a significant one as his overtime marker lifted the Carolina Hurricanes to a stunning 3-2 win over the top-seeded Boston Bruins in their series decider.

Cleary's tip-in with three minutes remaining sent the home fans into raptures and put the Stanley Cup champions on course for a series against the Chicago Blackhawks.

"The puck was right there and I just made sure to stay with it. I was pretty happy it went in," Cleary told reporters after he followed up teammate Henrik Zetterberg's shot.

"I treated (tonight) like an elimination game with our backs against the wall.

"It was a fun game to be a part of considering the outcome."

In a final game decider between the last two Stanley Cup champions, Detroit took a 2-0 lead with goals from Jiri Hudler and Darren Helm before Anaheim's Teemu Selanne halved the deficit.

Mikael Samuelsson then responded with a snap-shot at 16:23 in the second period to make it 3-1.

Corey Perry and Bobby Ryan scored for Anaheim to even the contest at 3-3 in the third period before Cleary popped up to score the winner.

In Boston, Walker swooped in to clean up a shot from Ray Whitney for the game-winner that put the Hurricanes into the conference finals where they will face the Pittsburgh Penguins.

The Bruins, trying to rally back from a 1-3 series deficit and reach their first conference finals since 1992, forced overtime with a Milan Lucic goal at 6:19 in the third.


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