There’s a dark-horse rookie making his case for a spot on the San Jose Sharks’ roster. Danil Gushchin is hoping to survive tomorrow’s looming roster cuts and a hat trick tonight against the Vegas Golden Knights ought to do it for him. The hat trick is just the third-ever preseason hat trick scored in Vegas’ history, with the first two being scored by Golden Knights players.
The first goal came on the power play a little over five minutes into the second period to put the Sharks up 2-1. The middle frame was loaded with goals, and with about four minutes left, Gushchin struck again, this time extending the Sharks’ lead 5-2.
(•_•)— San Jose Sharks (@SanJoseSharks) October 1, 2022
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Despite Jack Eichel hitting back with his own second goal of the night in the first minute of the third period, San Jose never took their feet off the gas and the Russian rookie completed the hatty with an unassisted goal as the period neared a close. Another goal from Luke Kunin meant the Sharks left Vegas with a 7-3 victory. Erik Karlsson, Matt Benning and Jonah Gadjovich also found the back of the net for San Jose.
No cap, Danil Gushchin is having a night pic.twitter.com/Sir5xQ6zSO— San Jose Sharks (@SanJoseSharks) October 1, 2022
Adding insult to injury, the netminder for Vegas was none other than Adin Hill, who played 25 games for San Jose last season. The 26-year-old netminder was traded in exchanged for a fourth-round pick a little over a month ago after one year of the two-year contract he signed with the Sharks in Aug. 2021.
The team was less lucky in Anaheim tonight, as the other half of the split squad lost 4-1 to the Ducks. Logan Couture scored the only Sharks goal.
Scott Gordon didn't know that Gushchin scored a hat trick in Vegas -- he joked: "Now I'm upset about the change. Maybe Quinny knew something I didn't know...Quinny's going to hear about this. 3 goals, that's a tied game [here]. The turning point [here] is he didn't play for us."— Sheng Peng (@Sheng_Peng) October 1, 2022