This was a rough road trip for the San Jose Sharks, who claimed just four of a possible ten points in the past week. The men in teal wrapped up the trip this afternoon with a 4-1 loss to the Winnipeg Jets. The win pushes the Jets past the Vegas Golden Knights to the top spot in the Western Conference.
In a rare noon Pacific start, the Sharks had a tough time getting things going. The Jets put three shots on goal in the first 30 seconds of play. Things continue to tilt Winnipeg’s way until Brenden Dillon dropped the gloves with Matt Hendricks. While Hendricks got the first few punches in, it was Dillon firing off the final blows and sending Hendricks to the locker room for a little repair work. The fight seemed to wake the Sharks up and they added a few scoring chances of their own to the score sheet.
But it was the Jets that finally cracked the scoreboard. At the 12:42 mark of the first period, Hendricks got behind the Sharks defense and beat Martin Jones to make it 1-0.
The Sharks had a chance to even the score late in the first period, but were unable to capitalize on either power play.
In the second, Winnipeg got their first shot at the power play and the Jets made it count. Marko Dano scored just his second goal of the season, putting the Jets up 2-0.
The Sharks had a big chance to even the score a few minutes later. Two quick penalties by the Jets, including one by defenseman Dustin Byfuglien, gave the Sharks more than a minute of 5-on-3 time. San Jose was unable to score on the two-man advantage, but did get the goal just as the first penalty expired. Logan Couture scored his 16th of the season to make the score 2-1.
The Jets received a power play late in the second after a controversial goaltender interference call on Chris Tierney. It appears Tierney was shoved into Jets goalie Connor Hellebuyck by defenseman Tobias Enstrom.
Really, though.— Brodie Brazil (@BrodieNBCS) January 7, 2018
This was called as a penalty on Tierney. What else was he supposed to do? pic.twitter.com/zHkxbfBglO
And, lastly:— Brodie Brazil (@BrodieNBCS) January 7, 2018
Byfuglien repeatedly kneeing Tierney in the head, was not called, either. pic.twitter.com/4NiZ5kb9xO
Bad call or not, the Sharks had to kill the penalty. They couldn’t and Mathieu Perreault scored the Jets third goal of the game. It was 3-1 going into the second intermission.
No one scored in the third, until the Sharks pulled Jones at 3:30 left in the game. It took less than 18 seconds for the Jets to capitalize. Perreault scored his second of the game into the empty net.
This isn’t the way the Sharks were hoping to go into the bye week. San Jose is off for the next five days thanks to the NHL’s mandatory break rule. The team will return to practice on Friday and play at home on Saturday against the Arizona Coyotes.
- Martin Jones has lost his last three starts.
- Dylan DeMelo did not play today. He is out with the flu.
- Paul Martin, Jannik Hansen, and Mikkel Boedker were all scratched for today’s game.
- The Sharks return home for Saturday’s game against the Coyotes and then head back out on the road for three more games.