The Sharks have ended the Vegas Golden Knights’ two-game preseason win streak with a 5-2 victory at SAP Center.
Tonight’s game was a great balance of veteran presence and youth talent, something the Sharks will need in spades come the regular season. If the preseason is teaching us anything, it’s that there is plenty of chemistry to work with in the Sharks’ organization, which is certainly promising.
Danny O’Regan started the night on the top line, but switched with Chris Tierney before the second period. That’s not to say that O’Regan under-performed, but Tierney is another player the Sharks are likely looking to give more responsibility this season, so they gave him a look with Joe Pavelski and Jannik Hansen. Tierney and O’Regan both managed to stand out, with Tierney getting two assists, and O’Regan’s hockey sense regularly driving play.
The power play is shaping up into something resembling the 2015-16 power play instead of the 2016-17 power play. With Joe Thornton coming back from a major injury, and losing Patrick Marleau on the second power play unit, a shuffled power play is definitely in the Sharks’ future. All three goals in the second period were power play goals.
Again, this game was radio broadcast only, so let’s walk through these goals.
Kevin Labanc, assisted by Timo Meier and Chris Tierney:
Joe Pavelski, assisted by Brent Burns and Dylan DeMelo:
Jannik Hansen, assisted by Tomas Hertl and Joakim Ryan:
Brenden Dillon, assisted by Chris Tierney:
Tomas Hertl, assisted by Timo Meier and Joakim Ryan:
How nice was that set up by Tierney on the Brenden Dillon goal? It’s very reminiscent of 2016 playoffs Tierney and that’s something I can get behind.
The goals for Vegas were scored by David Perron and Teemu Pulkkinen, both on the power play.
If the purpose of this preseason is for the young guys to prove themselves, they’re certainly off to a good start. The decision making when it comes to roster spots won’t be easy.