Martin Jones stopped 34 of 36 shots as the San Jose Sharks escaped the Honda Center with a 3-2 overtime win over the rival Anaheim Ducks.
San Jose played Anaheim evenly for the game’s first handful of minutes, and scored the game’s first goal. Mikkel Boedker’s net front pass eluded Logan Couture and found Paul Martin, who shot the puck into an open net. Couture was pushed into Ducks goaltender John Gibson by Anaheim’s defensemen, and Randy Carlyle opted not to challenge the goal.
The Sharks held an advantage on the scoreboard, but not in the run of play. The Ducks controlled the game from then on, and carried a strong territorial edge into the second period, and San Jose’s hectic travel schedule (they flew to Anaheim today due to some CBA travel rules) was readily apparent.
That turned into Anaheim’s first goal midway through the second period. Ondrej Kase gathered a loose puck at the side of the net, and, with all manner of chaos in Martin Jones’ crease, backhanded it by a sprawled Jones to tie the game.
Against the run of play, Melker Karlsson gave the Sharks a 2-1 lead 14:18 into the second period. Karlsson redirected Ward’s knuckling pass, and the bouncing puck flummoxed Gibson and bounced into the back of the net.
With a one-goal lead, the Sharks were content to sit back and the Ducks took advantage. Jakob Silfverberg tied the game with a redirection of his own, and tipped Ryan Kesler’s blocked shot with 6:25 left in regulation.
The Sharks clung to the tie in the period’s final six-and-a-half minutes, and managed to salvage a point, thanks largely to the play of Martin Jones. 2:46 into overtime, San Jose earned a second point, after Brent Burns gathered Joe Pavelski’s feed and buried a backhander past John Gibson to seal the win for San Jose.
- The Sharks owe Martin Jones a few drinks after tonight’s performance. Ensured San Jose earned at least a point, and another instance where Jones has been asked to carry the team and has delivered.
- In the third period, Pete DeBoer moved Patrick Marleau to the Sharks’ second power play unit, and replaced him with Kevin Labanc. Neither unit was particularly effective tonight, as the Sharks mustered four shots in as many power play opportunities.
- Given those power play struggles and the Sharks’ inability to do much of anything at even strength, San Jose could have used David Schlemko tonight. DeBoer is usually hesitant to make lineup changes following wins, and wins where the Sharks played well, but scratching one of the team’s two best defensemen in terms of possession proved to be unwise.
- San Jose’s same-day travel plans sure were evident tonight. Considering the Sharks likely won’t have to fly to a game the morning of again this season, you’ve got to be happy with two points any way you get them.
Fear the Fin Three Stars
- Martin Jones
- Jakob Silfverberg
- Ondrej Kase