Sharks Rally to Erase 2 Goal Deficit, Beat Wild 3-2 in Shootout for First Back-to-back Wins of Season

Minnesota Wild center Joel Eriksson Ek is stopped by San Jose Sharks goaltender James Reimer (47) with Sharks’ Jaycob Megna and Nico Sturm (7) looking on in the first period at the Excel Energy Arena in St Paul Minn on Sun Nov 13, 2022 (AP News photo)

By Matthew Harrington

The San Jose Sharks scored two goals in the final seven minutes to erase a two-goal deficit and finished off the Minnesota Wild in a shootout for their first set of consecutive wins. Steven Lorentz scored his second goal of the year for San Jose (59-3), Nico Sturm scored his sixth and James Reimer made 28 saves for the win.

Marc-Edouard Vlasic had a pair of assists and Erik Karlsson added a helper for his team-leading 22nd point of the season. Connor Dewar and Frederick Gaudreau tallied the goals for Minnesota (7-6-2) while Filip Gustavsson made 35 saves.

Kirill Kaprizov had the lone goal of the shootout when Nick Bonino hit the ice for the Sharks third do-or-die shot. He beat Gustavsson then Reimer made a toe save on Joel Eriksson Ek to give San Jose a shot to win in the fourth round. Alexander Barabanov went five-hole on Gustavsson to seal the deal for the two points.

With the Sharks Trailing 2-0, Lorentz started the comeback after grazing the net front and picking up a rebound off Vlasic’s point shot. His first backhander wasn’t successful but he got a second opportunity and buried it at the 13:56 mark.

Sturm, a member of the Minnesota Wild from 2018 to a mid-season trade last year, created the tying goal out of nothing. He picked the puck off the Sharks end boards while Minnesota were transitioning back to defense. He fed it to Vlasic in the Sharks end and Vlasic dished it to Karlsson coming down the center lane.

Karlsson backhanded it to Sturm before crossing the defensive blue line and Sturm skated it all the way into the offensive zone, snapping a wrist shot before the faceoff circle that beat Gustavsson stick side for a 2-2 tie with 4:11 left.

Gaudreau’s goal 6:45 into the first period was a thing of beauty both for the goal and Kaprizov’s assist. Kaprizov was able to thread a puck through three Sharks defenders on the boards in an inexplicable angle. Gaudreau was turned with his back to the end wall, but he turned and waited out Reimer skating across the crease for the 1-0 lead.

The other Wild goal came on a Sharks gaffe with Karlsson manning the point on the power play. The defenseman was back skating butay have hit a divot and took a tumble, giving Mason Shaw a breakaway chance. Dewar joined Jim for a 2-on-0, Shaw did the unselfish thing and made the pass and Dewar buried the easy goal 3:37 into the third.

After winning back-to-back games where they weren’t their best, the Sharks will need their A-game for the win in their next game. They travel to Sin City to face the Western Conference leader Golden Knights Tuesday night.

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