The San Jose Sharks (44-26-10, 2nd Pacific) will try to stop a four game losing streak against the visiting Colorado Avalanche (42-29-9, 4th Central). The Avs are desperate, they cling to the Western Conference's second wild card spot by a single point over the St. Louis Blues and, with a head to head match up scheduled for Saturday evening, every point counts for a Colorado team attempting a trip to the second season for the first time since 2014 under first year head coach and paragon of silent and respectful stoicism Patrick Roy.
Especially after dropping three points in back to back games against the Ducks in Anaheim and the Kings in Los Angeles; Colorado is stumbling at the worst possible time. Hart Trophy finalist Nathan MacKinnon leads the team in points (94), goals (38), and assists (56), but he's cooled off right along with his team lately, recording two assists in his last six games after piling up 17 goals and 31(!) points in the previous 16 (!!). The Avs are 1-3-1 in their last five, and will be hungry and desperate tonight. Considering they're 2-0 against the Sharks so far this year, this will not be an easy time to reverse San Jose's fortunes.
In San Jose's 4-2 loss to the Dallas Stars on Tuesday, Logan Couture (33) hitting his career high in goals seems a cold comfort. The Sharks hold the slimmest of leads in the division, just one point ahead of the Ducks and two ahead of the Kings. A regulation loss tonight, paired with a Kings win over the visiting Minnesota Wild, would knock the Sharks into third place and out of home ice.
Both teams are beset by some serious injuries, so we can't really use that excuse. Per head coach Peter DeBoer this morning, Joachim Ryan is healthy, but will sit tonight instead of replacing Paul Martin, for some reason; Evander Kane is progessing, and guaranteed he'd be ready by the post season, and Melker Karlsson is considered a game time decision after missing this morning's skate. Colorado's situation may be even more dire: Semyon Varlamov and Erik Johnson are both out for the foreseeable future, making their last grasp at some of that sweet, sweet playoff revenue even more desperate.
Hold onto your butts.
Timo Meier -- Joe Pavelski -- Joonas Donskoi
Brenden Dillon -- Dylan DeMelo
Scratched: Joakim Ryan
Gabriel Landeskog -- Nathan MacKinnon -- Mikko Rantanen
Sven Andrighetto -- Alexander Kerfoot -- Tyson Jost
Matt Nieto -- Carl Soderberg -- Blake Comeau
Colin Wilson -- J.T. Compher -- Gabriel Bourque
Nikita Zadorov -- Tyson Barrie
Patrik Nemeth -- Samuel Girard
Mark Barberio -- Mark Alt
Injured: Semyon Varlamov (knee), Erik Johnson (knee)
Where to Watch
Broadcast: NBCSCA+, ALT
Stream: NHL.tv / NHL App
Radio: 98.5 KFOX / NHL App / Sharks App