San Jose Sharks Friday game wrap: Sharks scoring in first was all they need to defeat Habs 2-1 at SAP Center

AP photo:The San Jose Sharks Brent Burns center right (88) is congratulated by his teammates from left to right Joe Thornton (19), Joe Pavelski (8), and Patrick Marleau (12). Burns chalked up his tenth goal of the season in the first period on Friday night at SAP Center
by London Marq
SAN JOSE–It was a battle of first place clubs as the Montreal Canadians, leaders of the Atlantic Division, traveled to California to take on the Pacific leading Sharks. Coming into the game the Canadians had scored 15 more goals this season than the Sharks, and 17 more assists. Montreal has been extremely successful on offense, controlling possession through their first 23 games. On paper, The Canadians looked to have the edge.

This game however, saw San Jose dominate time with the puck early, as they came away with the winning two goals in the first period Brent Burns scored his tenth goal of the season and Joe Pavelski with his eighth of the year. The Sharks maintained control over the entire game after that. Although Montreal ended the game with more shots on goal, 32 to San Jose’s 30, they never were able to apply constant pressure to goalkeeper Martin Jones.

Montreal was able to score a late goal, but it was too little as time was running out. Games are not or won played on paper. The Sharks came out and proved that in a game that very well may be a Stanley Cup preview. The last time the Canadians won in San Jose was back in 1999. The Habs took in one of the best records in the NHL but couldn’t eclipse or tie San Jose’s lead all night and stand at 16-5-2 first in Atlantic Division.

The Sharks with the win improved their record to 15-9-1 and their next game is slated against the Ottawa Senators on Wednesday night at SAP followed by a trip to Anaheim on Friday the 9th. Jones stopped 29 of 30 shots in Friday night’s contest for his 13th win of the season. Jones was also named the NHL Player of the Month before Friday’s game. The Sharks won 60% of their face offs which made a huge difference in carrying the offense in this game. Paul Martin of the Sharks played in his 800th NHL game of his career.

Final: San Jose def. Montreal 2-1


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