Speaking of history, Patrick Marleau was honored before the game in a ceremony celebrating his 1000th career point. Once the game started, Marleau would look like one of the best Sharks in the first period, flashing a lot of speed. But it was Pittsburgh who would strike first. Phil Kessel circled behind the goal, and threw the puck off Paul Martin's skate, then Martin Jones' pad and into the net to make it 1-0 Penguins 2:30 into the game.
The rest of the period was fairly even. The top line got some pretty good looks for San Jose, and even the fourth line did a pretty good job at getting some chances early. After 20 minutes, shots were 13-12 Penguins, but attempts were 26-23 in the Sharks favor.
Hertl drew a penalty early in the second, and Melker Karlsson had a couple whacks at a puck on the powerplay, but couldn't bury it. Back at even strength, in a similar move, Matt Cullen had a couple chances at Jones right in front, but Cullen was able to move below the goal line and send the puck off Jones' far skate for a goal, as the Penguins took a two goal lead.
The Sharks kepth pushing, and Brent Burns nearly had a chance to cut the deficit in half with Marc-Andre Fleury well out of position, but he couldn't get a clean backhand off with the pressure from Pittsburgh's defense. Almost immediately after, Evgeni Malkin weaved up the ice and gave the Penguins a 3-0 lead with a wraparound goal. Another goal against that was basically scored behind the goal line.
The Sharks responded pretty well though once trailing by three. After the returning Justin Braun was boarded by Beau Bennett, the Sharks powerplay scored with Joe Pavelski feeding a nice pass to Marleau who slid into the slot and fired one behind Fleury.
A moment later, it looked liked Tomas Hertl got another one back in a scrum in the crease that also involved Tommy Wingels, but the goal was immediately waved off. It was ruled that Wingels made incidental contact with Fleury, keeping him from stopping the shot. While that seemed like an incorrect ruling, Wingels certainly batted the puck to Hertl with his glove, and the play probably should have been blown dead as a hand pass.
The Sharks controlled play in the latter half of the period, leaving the Penguins with one shot attempt in the second half of the second period. Attempts were 47-33 in the Sharks' favor after two. They would keep the pressure up early in the third period, but a 'too many men' call against the Sharks proved costly. Chris Kunitz - working behind the net - found David Perron crashing in front of the net untouched as Perron made it a 4-1 lead 8:42 into the third. San Jose kept working, and gambled with an empty net with 4:30 left in the game, but the Penguins would convert on the empty netter with a Phil Kessel goal. Shots finished 34-29 Sharks, but attempts were a lopsided 75-48 in the Sharks favor. The score, however, finished as a 5-1 Penguins win.
Fear the Fin's Three Stars
1) Evgeni Malkin
2) Phil Kessel
3) Patrick Marleau