Lubomir Vishnovsky’s goal 4:27 into overtime gave the Anaheim Ducks a 3-2 win over the Sharks on Tuesday night. The Sharks outshot their opponents 41-20 but Jonas Hiller stepped into 2009-playoff-mode to backstop his team to victory.
It looked as though the Sharks were ready to duplicate their win against Anaheim just 10 nights earlier, starting off in similar fashion with an early goal and a fight between Frazer McLaren and George Parros but after a nice deflection by Jason Blake to tie the game at 1-1, the teams slipped into a sloppy style of play full of poor positioning and low-percentage passes. I’m sure the Ducks did not mind this ‘shinny’ style of play as it took out the rhythm from the Sharks’ offense as well as the crowd right out of the game. Corey Perry took advantage of a poorly positioned Dan Boyle and shoveled a rebound over the pads of Antero Niittymaki for a 2-1 lead after two periods.
In the 3rd, the Sharks would show some resiliency pouring pressure on the Ducks in their own zone, causing them to take penalties. Though San Jose’s powerplay went 0 for 4, Devin Setoguchi tied the game on a delayed call and after two Ducks were left without their sticks in their own zone. Seto’ goal was his only his 2nd of the season, snapping an 11-game goal-less drought.
The overtime goal came after what appeared to be a bad icing call which Todd McLellan plead his case to the linesman after he called his timeout to rest his players. A blown icing call or not, his timeout should have negated the advantage Anaheim may have had with rested players taking the draw. Instead of pleading his case to the linesman, the Sharks should have been drawing up the “what if we lose the face-off” scenario where someone missed their assignment.
If the Sharks cannot put together a complete 60 minute game of hockey, the struggling Islanders have a chance make it a difficult game for San Jose on Thursday night. The Sharks will have Joe Thornton back from suspension when they host New York and I figure Anttii Niemi will get the nod in net.
With six of their remaining ten games of November at home, these points are extremely important for the Sharks as they’ll have a tough start to December when they go on a 5-game road-trip.
About the Author
Written by Alex Wasserstrom
Native Californian, former minor league pro, and current men's league superstar, Alex Wasserstrom is ProSportsBlogging.com's San Jose Sharks correspondent. Wanna talk puck? Shoot him an email (firstname.lastname@example.org) or follow him on Twitter (@Awassers).