That was a rough one, folks.
It’s not that the Sharks played particularly badly, but in one way or another, the Ducks’ defense or John Gibson was always there. A couple stupid goals and suddenly the game is out of reach.
The Sharks out-shot the Ducks 33-15, but just 7 shots in the third period didn’t give them a lot of opportunities to pull ahead in a tied game. Brandon Montour got lucky and that propelled the Ducks ahead when the Sharks got desperate.
At least Erik Karlsson looked good and Tomas Hertl ended Cam Fowler’s career.
Oh well. Off to the East.
A very smart person who is only occasionally right about these things said this morning that Timo Meier likely wouldn’t start the season on the top line, and yet, here we are with Timo Meier on the top line. Aside from that shift, everything is just about as expected.
Rourke Chartier, Tim Heed and Radim Simek are healthy scratches.
Tonight’s game will be nationally broadcast on NBCSN and the radio call will be on 98.5 KFOX in the Bay Area.
Check back at puck drop, where I’ll be liveblogging alongside all of you in the comments.
It’s almost time for Sharks hockey.
Erik Karlsson is about to make his real Sharks debut, and what more can I say about that, really? The 82-game road to playoffs starts now and it’s the best I’ve felt in a long time.
It’s too early to say much, and who cares, anyway? We’re all just ready and waiting.
Let’s do this.
Antti Suomela was just announced as a scratch. No updates on new line combinations or why he’s taking a night in the press box. (Update: [narrator voice] This was a mistake)
Oh wow, baby face Joe Thornton is a lot.
19:11: Well, that’s not ideal. Just a good play for the Ducks through the neutral zone and Max Comtois just got his first NHL goal on his first shot.
17:57: Timo Meier looks so good with the Joes. Pavelski was just pounding away at John Gibson, but no doing.
17:48: Karlsson with a shot!
17:14: Josh Manson with interference on Kevin Labanc. Let’s do this power play, yeah?
15:57: Joe Thornton with a penalty on Hampus Lindholm. 4-on-4 for a bit, then on to the kill.
15:08: Pontus Aberg with goaltender interference behind the net, so back to the power play for San Jose. Ducks had a surprisingly good kill last time.
12:09: Evander Kane just came through with a lot of speed off a bump pass from Justin Braun and beat out Gibson. Tied 1-1.
10:05: I can’t get over how good Karlsson is. It’s truly unreal.
7:41: They’re starting to find their footing. Pete DeBoer said as much on the broadcast, that in the first game, mistakes get made, but I think it’s coming together quickly. This is the fastest this team has played in recent memory.
3:40: The top line with Karlsson and Marc-Edouard Vlasic just had an incredible shift.
END OF FIRST: 1-1 Tied
Things started to come together at the end of the first. Power play wasn’t spectacular, but maybe an opportunity now that they’re in the groove and it could turn around.
18:46: Really good opportunity for the Kane line, but Gibson stops that and the rebound. The Sharks have fired off five shots real quick to start the period.
15:40: It appears Kane is back up with the Joes, though it might be briefly.
15:20: Kane is putting some pressure on Gibson, but nothing is going though.
15:04: AND NOW TIMO COMES ON WITH A GREAT CHANCE
11:45: I don’t understand how the Sharks haven’t scored yet when they’re doing everything right.
11:14: Martin Jones with a great save on Jakob Silfverberg.
6:47: This has been moving very fast and I’m very enthralled, but Manson just tripped Marcus Sorensen and the Sharks are back on the power play. Let’s see if the lead is out.
5:48: This power play unit is Labanc, Meier, Couture, Kane and Karlsson and it hasn’t looked bad. Gibson looks better, unfortunately.
4:47: That’s it for the power play.
4:05: Kane is doing everything he can to score, but Gibson is there to stop him every single time.
3:36: Kane off for tripping Manson with his stick along the boards.
2:47: HOLY UNREAL SHORTHANDED HERTL! 2-1 SHARKS!
2:00: Rickard Rakell ties it up at 2 on the power play.
END SECOND: Tied 2-2
Sharks looked so much better in that period, but Gibson is having an incredible night.
19:52: Labanc right off the opening face-off gets a shot at Gibson. No dice.
14:46: Kane with a breakaway and STILL nothing. I’m getting real tired of this, y’all.
14:10: Braun with a shot and then rebounds and good god, one of these has to go through eventually.
12:30: The Sharks are literally out-shooting the Ducks 30-11 at this point, like nothing about this is even at all and they just can’t get through Gibson.
11:58: Montour puts the Ducks up 3-2. Clean backhander over Jones’ shoulder.
9:52: Not a good time for Couture to take a tripping penalty. Big kill coming up.
9:38: Adam Henrique on the power play. 4-2 Ducks.
2:25: I think I blacked out there for a second, but Jones is off for the extra skater.
:23.7: Empty netter for Anaheim, so that’s cool.
FINAL SCORE: Ducks 5, Sharks 2