After being shutout in their first preseason game, it was nice to see San Jose do some scoring in game two. It was especially nice to see Tomas Hertl rewarded for his hard work with a power-play goal in the third period. Hertl had three shots against the Canucks on Tuesday, the second-most of any Shark behind Brent Burns' four, and I was especially impressed with his net-front presence.
This is Hertl's goal, a deflection from a point shot by Justin Braun (who received the puck from Matt Tennyson). His goal was emblematic of his effort all night — he nearly had a second tipped goal on Nikolay Goldobin's tally.
Who's that in front of the net? Bingo. Hertl again. This is the kind of stuff we saw from Hertl in his rookie season that he seemed a little hesitant to do in his sophomore campaign. If he's getting to the front of the net consistently, good things will happen. Of course, tempering this is the level of competition — it'll be tougher against high-quality NHL competition all night than it was on Tuesday.
Martin Jones also had an impressive debut, making 30 saves and helping keep the Canucks off the board over 12 penalty minutes. It's rare to see a netminder go the distance in a preseason game, but perhaps it has something to do with Jones coming into a starting gig for the first time in his career. His movement was good — his style is certainly more aesthetically pleasing than what we were used to in Antti Niemi.
Speaking of the man-advantage — the Sharks sending Vancouver to the power play six times is something that will have to change come regular season time. On the flip side, the power play looked good tonight. The Sharks had three opportunities and cashed in on two of them.
The odd couple
Burns and Martin got their first crack together on Tuesday and looked about as good as expected. Both potted a goal and, being complementary pieces, should fit well together all season. Check out Burns' goal below.
What were your takeaways from the Sharks' 4-0 win?