Thearon W. Henderson
A look at the numbers behind the Sharks' first loss of the season.
|Player||TOI||Corsi +||Corsi -||Corsi +/-||Chances +||Chances -||Chances +/-|
- Michal Handzus led all forwards in even-strength ice time. I give up.
- It's essentially a vicious cycle with Gomez at this point: stick him with grinders; he fails to make an impact; curtail his minutes even further; he continues to fail to make an impact; lather, rinse, repeat. With, of course, the random shift with actual talent thrown in there wherein he's incredibly productive before being once again relegated to the bench.
- I wouldn't read too much into the disparity between the shot differential and chance count, although this was the second straight game in which the Sharks fared far poorer in the latter than the former. There just weren't many chances to go around at even-strength last night.
- At the same time, playing the Preds to a draw territorially is nothing to be proud of. The Sharks routinely dominated weak possession teams like Nashville on the shot clock over the past two seasons.
- I mentioned this in the recap, but the top line was just off in this game. Their passes weren't clicking, they were rarely able to gain the blueline with possession and they gave up a lot the other way to the Colin Wilson/Mike Fisher/Sergei Kostitsyn line. That was despite the fact that Thornton and Pavelski started eight more 5v5 shifts in the offensive zone than their own end. Not a great performance by any of them but they'll bounce back.
- On the other hand, the second line dominated the cycle with James Sheppard making unexpected but welcome positive contributions along the boards. Unfortunately, they weren't quite as effective at creating offensive opportunities (save for that now-infamous shift when Havlat took Sheppard's place and failed to bang home a loose puck) but hopefully that will come.
- I understand the logic behind dressing Murray over Irwin for use on the penalty kill but at what point does Murray's perceived prowess shorthanded become completely trumped by his detrimental even-strength play?
- Vlasic was terrific now that he no longer has to worry about handling or advancing the puck. I'd love to see that pairing with Braun stay together a bit longer.