Meier Scores 5, Sharks Beat Kings 6-2; It’s Timo Time all the time

San Jose Sharks right wing Timo Meier (28) raises the puck high, Meier scored five goals against the Los Angeles Kings on Martin Luther King Day at SAP Center in San Jose on Mon Jan 17, 2022 (AP News photo)

By Mary Walsh

SAN JOSE– Timo Meier scored five goals in the San Jose Sharks (21-17-2) 6-2 win over the Los Angeles Kings (20-14-5) Monday afternoon. It was the first time in Sharks history that a Shark scored that many in one game. Rudolfs Balcers also scored, for the second game in a row. James Reimer made 39 saves for the win. Anze Kopitar and Mikey Anderson scored for the Kings and Jonathan Quick made 11 saves in the loss.

Apart from Meier’s stunning play Monday, the game also saw the Sharks’ struggling power play score twice, Tomas Hertl earn four assists and Erik Karlsson get three, including his 500th.

After the game, Sharks Head Coach talked about the game:

“I’m very happy and proud for Timo, I think he’s put a lot of hard work in. For our team, a team that hasn’t scored a lot and has played well of late and hasn’t gotten quite the results that I think we deserve, it was nice to see, as a team, one of our big guys go off like that.”

Timo Meier scored his first of the afternoon at 3:02 on the power play. From just inside the left face-off dot, Meier caught a cross-ice pass from Brent Burns and whipped into the net on the short side. Assists went to Burns and Erik Karlsson.

Rudolfs Balcers made it 2-0 at 15:56 of the first. Balcers sent the puck out of his zone to Hertl in the neutral zone. Hertl carried the puck along the blue line before shooting it right down the slot. Balcers caught it with the back of his stick and then shot it past Quick on the glove side.

Meier scored his second at 18:48, unassisted. While he skated across in front of the blue paint, the puck went off of his skate. He spun and gathered it up for a quick roofer.

He completed the hat trick 21 seconds later. Hertl dug the puck out of the corner and got it to Meier in a nice shooting spot. Meier’s shot did not go in but he moved to the other side of the net and cleaned up a rebound. Hertl got the assist.

The busy final minute was not over, as Anze Kopitar scored for Los Angeles with just 16 seconds left in the period. Kopitar took advantage of a turnover at the blue line and then charged into the zone for a shot from outside the face-off dot.

Meier started working a second hatty to start the second period, with another power play goal at 1:24. He caught a cross-ice pass from Erik Karlsson just outside the face-off dot and scored with a quick wrist shot. Assists went to Karlsson and Hertl.

Meier scored his fifth goal at 19:32 of the second. He caught a cross-ice pass from Hertl, brought the puck around a defender with a toe drag. He shot it past Quick’s glove, off the post and in. Assists went to Hertl and Karlsson.

Mikey Anderson scored the only third period goal to make it 6-2. Drew Doughty centered the puck from low in the zone and Anderson tipped it in. Assists went to Doughty and Viktor Arvidsson.

The Kings out-shot the Sharks 41-17 in the game. The Sharks had three power plays, scored on two of them with two shots. The Sharks’ penalty kill allowed four shots through three penalties. In the face-off circle, the Kings prevailed with 53% of the draws.

The Sharks next play in Seattle against the Kraken on Thursday at 7:00 PM PT.

Sharks Shut Out By Rangers and Shesterkin 3-0; Three game win streak comes to an end

New York Rangers goaltender Igor Shesterkin, left, who threw a shutout against the San Jose Sharks and center Jasper Weatherby (26) stops a shot on net at SAP Center in San Jose on Thu Jan 13, 2021 (AP News photo)

By Mary Walsh

SAN JOSE- The San Jose Sharks fell 3-0 to the New York Rangers in San Jose Thursday. Chris Kreider scored twice, Braden Schneider scored once for New York and Igor Shesterkin made 37 saves for the shut-out. Adin Hill made 28 saves for the Sharks.

After the game, Sharks Head Coach Bob Boughner said:

“Tonight I thought we played a good game. I don’t think that we shot ourselves in the foot or, you know, we got dominated in any single area. I thought that Shesterkin made some great saves early. We couldn’t find the goal we needed. We fought hard and the difference I think was giving up a shorty.”

Timo Meier, recently selected for the 2022 All Star Game, talked about the loss: “We were right there the whole time. We had good legs, I think the energy was good too. From our side. We just couldn’t score, that extra centimeter in front of the net that we couldn’t get tonight.”

Chris Kreider gave the Rangers the lead with a short-handed goal midway through the first period. Mika Zibanejad and Kreider broke away during the Sharks power play and with one pass avoided the Sharks defense and scored. Assists went to Zibanejad and Adam Fox.

The Sharks out-shot the Rangers 10-6 in that period, but their power play gave up two shots and the goal, while only getting one power play shot. The teams were even in the face-off circle at 50% each. In the second period, the Rangers raised their face-off wins to 63% and out-shot the Sharks 13-10.

The Sharks took one penalty early in the period and their penalty kill gave up one shot. The second period was marked by a number of penalties. Timo Meier and Jacob Trouba scuffled and received matching minors. Jeffrey Viel then fought Trouba shortly after Trouba exited the box.

Braden Schneider scored his first NHL goal at 1:27 of the third, making it 2-0 Rangers. A turnover at the blue line left the Sharks in disarray while the Rangers went on the attack. Schneider arrived late and got a shot away before anyone picked him up. Assists went to Ryan Strome and Filip Chytil.

The Sharks had a late power play, out-shot the Rangers 17-12, and pulled their goaltender in the final minute to no avail. Chris Kreider scored his 200th goal into an empty net. Kevin Rooney got the assist.

The Sharks did improve in the face-off circle during the third period, winning 65% of the draws.

The Sharks next play on Saturday, in San Jose against the Pittsburgh Penguins at 7:30 PM PT. Nick Bonino has come off of the COVID-19 list and played Thursday. Alexander Barabanov has been put on the list so he will miss some time.

Sharks Beat Flyers 3-2 in OT With Hertl Hat Trick

The San Jose Sharks Tomas Hertl is jubilant after nailing the game winning goal in overtime against the Philadelphia Flyers at the Wells Fargo Arena in Philadelphia on Sat Jan 8, 2022 (AP News photo)

By Mary Walsh

The San Jose Sharks defeated the Philadelphia Flyers 3-2 in overtime, again, on Saturday. It was the same score as on December 30 in San Jose. Tomas Hertl scored all three Sharks goals and Adin Hill made 29 saves for the win. Brent Burns had 3 assists and led the team with 29:35 TOI. James van Riemsdyk scored both Flyers goals and Martin Jones made 44 saves in the loss.

Logan Couture and Lane Pedersen are still out on the COVID list. Erik Karlsson, James Reimer, Rudolfs Balcers and Jacob Middleton are all out with injuries.

After the game, Sharks Head Coach Bob Boughner talked about how Tomas Hertl helped balance out those absences:

“What I loved about it, even when we got down 2-0, even in the last two games, he’s taken on a huge void, leadership role, And he’s saying ‘it’s alright, we’re still in this, we’ve got this, let’s keep going, let’s keep working. We’re playing well.’ So Tommy was just more than being the player of the game, you know, he was pretty inspirational in the locker room and on the bench tonight.”

The games was scoreless for 40 minutes. The shots were close, 15-13 Flyers in the first, 13-10 Sharks in the second. Each team had one power play. The Sharks power play had two shots and their penalty kill gave up one. With the teams so close in so many aspects, it was no wonder they were tied at 0 going into the final frame.

The Sharks had some good chances in the first minute of the third, but, just as that minute expired, James van Riemsdyk got around Marc-Edouard Vlasic and broke away for a shot from the face-off circle. The puck went by Adin Hill and into the top corner. Assists went to Oskar Lindblom and Kevin Hayes.

The Flyers scored again at 6:47, this time on the power play. Cam York sent the puck to the net and it went off of van Riemsdyk, then bounced over Hill. Assists went to York and Cam Atkinson.

Tomas Hertl got one back for the Sharks at 7:47. Timo Meier made a quick back-hand pass from just above the goal line. Hertl was at the net ready to put it away. Assists went to Meier and Brent Burns.

Hertl put the puck in the net again at 14:29. In the midst of net-front traffic, he kicked the puck to his stick for a backhand past Jones on the far side. Assists again went to Meier and Burns.

The Sharks out-shot the Flyers 20-5 in the third period. Each team had a power play. the Sharks had two shots on theirs and the Flyers got one that went in.

Hertl completed his hat trick with the Sharks’ first shot in overtime, 24 seconds in. Brent Burns won the puck in the corner at the Sharks’ end and got the puck to Hertl. Hertl carried it the other way, and by the time he reached the Flyers blue line, Timo Meier was there for a two-on-one.

The face-off battle went back and forth from period to period. The Sharks won 61% in the third, but the Flyers won 52% in the first and 75% in the second, and the only face-off in overtime.

The Sharks next play on Tuesday in San Jose against the Detroit Red Wings at 7:30 PM PT.

In other news, the Sharks announced that they have put Evander Kane on unconditional waivers for the purpose of terminating his contract. The statement specified that this was “for breach of his NHL Standard Player Contract and for violation of the AHL COVID-19 protocols.”

If that termination goes through, the Sharks will be free from all salary obligations to Kane and his salary will come off of their salary cap.

Sharks Fall to Red Wings 6-2

San Jose Sharks defenseman Brent Burns (88) and Detroit Red Wings center Robby Fabbri (14) scramble for the puck at Little Caesars Arena in Detroit on Tue Jan 4, 2022 (AP New photo)

By Mary Walsh

The San Jose Sharks (17-16-1) fell 6-2 to the Red Wings (16-15-3) in Detroit on Tuesday. Pius Suter (2), Tyler Bertuzzi (2), Dylan Larkin, and Robby Fabbri scored for Detroit. Alex Nedeljkovic made 24 saves for the win. Jasper Weatherby and Alexander Barabanov scored for San Jose. James Reimer made 20 saves on 24 shots in the first two periods, and Adin Hill made 5 saves on 7 shots in the third.

The Sharks have given up six or more goals in three of their last four games. In two of those, they scored five or more goals, but the Sharks’ defensive game is struggling. After the game, Brent Burns talked about the power play and the game in general: “It’s just gotta be better. At the end of the day you’ve gotta figure it out, put the next guy in a good spot, you gotta start executing, doing things on the same page. Obviously it’s not good enough.”

Logan Couture and Lane Pederson on the COVID-19 list, and Marc-Edouard Vlasic out as a healthy scratch, the Sharks were short-handed even before they lost Jacob Middleton to injury in the first period. Sharks Head Coach Bob Boughner talked about the absence of key players and how it may be undermining the team’s confidence:

“You worry about team confidence. That’s what we need to get back here. You know, I think losing [Couture], and not having Mario [Ferraro], and having [Rudolfs Balcers] out for a while, we’re thin, we’re a little bit thin. Some teams can miss three or four players and they don’t miss a beat. And they’re better teams in the league, they’re elite teams. We’re not and that means we’ve got to come together and play a little smarter and a little harder.”

At 13:02 of the first, Tyler Bertuzzi threw the puck to the net from below the goal line. It went off of James Reimer’s stick and into the net. Assists went to Gustav Lindstrom and Dylan Larkin.

Late in the period, Red Wings forward Givani Smith received a five minute major and a game misconduct for boarding Sharks defenseman Jacob Middleton. Middleton left the ice and did not return to the game.

The Sharks started the second period with more than three minutes left on the power play. Instead of scoring, they gave up two short-handed goals. Prior to the game, the Red Wings had gone 100 games without a short-handed goal.

Pius Suter scored the first, after breaking away while Alexander Barabanov tried to chase him down from the other side of the ice.

Tyler Bertuzzi scored his second of the game less than 40 seconds later, also short-handed. This time, the Red Wings left the Sharks power play behind with a two-on-one. Assists went to Carter Rowney and Moritz Seider.

Jasper Weatherby got one back at 4:03. Weatherby deflected a Brent Burns shot while cutting through in front of the net. Assists went to Burns and Jeffrey Viel.

Pius Suter scored his second of the game at 9:32. Michael Rasmussen set him up with a back hand from the goal line and Suter’s quick shot beat Reimer on the glove side. Assists went to Rasmussen and Nick Leddy.

The Sharks put Adin Hill in net to start the third period.

Alexander Barabanov had a Tomas Hertl shot go off of his skate at 1:40 of the third, for his sixth goal of the season.

A couple of minutes later, Dylan Larkin skated around the Sharks defense and shot the puck past Adin Hill for his 16th goal of the season. Assists went to Lucas Raymond and Gustav Lindstrom.

Robby Fabbri scored his ninth of the season at 5:01. He picked off a Brent Burns pass and shot it right into the far side of the net.

Midway through the third, a scrum erupted in front of the Detroit net, ending with two more game misconducts, one to Jeffrey Viel and one to Tyler Bertuzzi. They also received roughing minors, creating two minutes of four-on-four.

The Sharks were out-shot by the Red Wings 31-26. The Sharks prevailed in the face-off circle, winning 52% of the draws. It was Burns’ 631st consecutive game.

The Sharks’ next game will be Thursday in Buffalo against the Sabres at 4:00 PM PT.

Sharks Lose 8-5 to Penguins; Pens open up six goal surge on SJ in first period

Pittsburgh Penguins’ Evan Rodrigues (9) celebrates his hat trick with Bryan Rust (17), the Penguins scored six goals in the first period at PPG Paints Arena in Pittsburgh on Sun Jan 2, 2022 (AP News photo)

By Mary Walsh

The San Jose Sharks started 2022 off on the road, losing 8-5 to the Pittsburgh Penguins. The victory marked the Penguins’ eighth win in a row. Evan Rodrigues and Bryan Rust each came away with hat tricks for the Penguins.

Kasper Bjorkqvist and Jake Guentzel scored the balance of the Pittsburgh goals, while Casey DeSmith made 22 saves for the win. Alexander Barabanov, Brent Burns, Matt Nieto, Jacob Middleton and Logan Couture scored for the Sharks. James Reimer made 11 saves on 17 shots in the first period before being replaced by Zach Sawchenko, who made 20 saves on 21 shots.

The Penguins scored four goals in the first 6:09 of the game, and went on to score two more before the end of the first period. “It snowballed on us. We couldn’t stop it. We tried to call time out, we tried to switch things out, but it was ugly,” said Sharks Head Coach Bob Boughner after the game. He summarized the game as: “You score five goals on the road, you should at least come out with a point. So I think that speaks to a couple things on our side.”

Boughner praised his rookie goaltender, Zach Sawchenko:

“Young guy, never played a [NHL] game before, you know, going in to a 6-1 game in a building like this against a team like this. I thought he showed a lot of character, I thought he battled hard for us, and he gave us a chance to come back.”

Sawchenko allowed just one goal, and that one on the power play, in his two periods in net.

The first Pittsburgh goal, at 1:09, came from Evan Rodrigues. The Penguins had a two-on-one into the zone. Rodrigues got around Radim Simek and took a shot between the defenders that got by Reimer on the stick side. Assists went to Marcus Pettersson and Danton Heinen.

Jake Guentzel scored at 3:12. Rust made a pass across the ice, through the blue paint and Guentzel sent it right back to the net. Assists went to Rust and Sidney Crosby.

Rodrigues scored his second at 4:11. On another odd-man rush, Rodrigues carried the puck all the way to the net before lifting it in with a backhand shot. Assists went to Heinen and Dominic Simon.

Bryan Rust scored at 6:09. He took the shot from low in the slot. There was some traffic in front of the net, but no one between Reimer and Rust. Assists went to Kris Letang and Brian Dumoulin.

Barabanov scored one at 15:33. Timo Meier sent the puck to the net aloft. Barabanov knocked it out of the air and the slipped it around the goaltender. Assists went to Meier and Marc-Edouard Vlasic.

Kasper Bjorkqvist scored his first NHL goal at 16:29. Radim Zohorna sent the puck into a mass of bodies at the net. The puck went to Bjorkqvist who had dropped to a knee and was ready to nudge it back in. Assists went to Zohorna and Sam Lafferty.

Rust scored his second of the game at 19:32. He took the shot from the blue line into net traffic. It bounced over Reimer on the stick side. Assists went to John Marino and Marcus Pettersson.

The Sharks replaced Reimer to start the second period, putting rookie Zach Sawchenko into his first NHL game with the team down 6-1.

Brent Burns scored the only goal in the second period, with a blast from the blue line. The goal came on the power play at 14:27. Assists went to Nick Bonino and Noah Gregor.

Matt Nieto scored just 20 seconds into the third period with a carom off the end boards that went off of DeSmith and in. Assists went to Jacob Middleton and Andrew Cogliano.

Jacob Middleton scored at 3:01 with a redirection of an Erik Karlsson shot from the point. Assists went to Karlsson and Meier.

Logan Couture brought the Sharks within one goal at 4:09. Meier centered the puck out of traffic along the boards and Couture was ready to shoot it in.

Evan Rodrigues scored his third of the night at 17:59 on the power play. Rodrigues’ shot went past Erik Karlsson and between Jake Guentzel’s skates before getting to the net. Assists went to Kris Letang and Bryan Rust.

Bryan Rust scored into an empty net at 19:49. Assists went to Sidney Crosby and Jake Guentzel.

The Sharks were out-shot 39-27 in the game. They won 66% of the face-offs. The Sharks penalty kill allowed four shots and two goals. Their power play had one shot and one goal.

The Sharks next play on Tuesday in Detroit against the Red Wings at 4:30 PM PT.

Sharks Finish 2021 With a 3-2 OT Win Over Flyers

San Jose Sharks center Tomas Hertl (48) scores an overtime goal on Philadelphia Flyers goaltender Felix Sandstrom (32) at SAP Center in San Jose on Thu Dec 30, 2021 (AP News photo)

By Mary Walsh

SAN JOSE– The San Jose Sharks defeated the Philadelphia Flyers 3-2 in overtime on Thursday. Logan Couture, Brent Burns and Tomas Hertl scored for the Sharks and James Reimer made 23 saves for the win. Morgan Frost and Joel Farabee scored for the Flyers and Felix Sandstrom made 43 saves in the loss.

After the game, Sharks Head Coach Bob Boughner said:

“I thought we played a complete 60 minutes. You know, no game is without mistakes, both teams made ’em. But I thought we played to our game plan, to our mentality, we grinded it out. Would have been nice if we found a little more puck luck earlier in the game.”

James Reimer took a moment to mention the opposing goaltender, Felix Sandstrom:

“Honestly, we should probably spend 30 seconds to a minute talking about their goalie. Hats off to him. I think that was his first start and a really tough situation for him. I think they got in pretty late last night. And obviously their team didn’t have their legs tonight. So, you know, hats off to him. He played great and he should be proud of his first game.”

(The Flyers did not arrive until 4:30 am)

The Sharks out-shot the Flyers 12-7 in the first period, but failed to score, even with two power plays. Instead, Morgan Frost got the Flyers on the board at 15:23. Travis Konecny raced through the neutral zone with the puck before dropping it to Oskar Lindblom on the outside. Lindblom gave it right back and Konecny centered if for Frost.

Logan Couture tied the game with a short-handed goal at 5:20 of the second period. Couture chased the puck down in the neutral zone after Cogliano got it out. Couture then pushed the puck past Keith Yandle for a self pass and made a dash for the net. It was his 11th of the season. Assists went to Cogliano and Jacob Middleton.

Brent Burns gave the Sharks the lead at 7:20. Tomas Hertl carried the puck into the zone, then spun around and made a pass to Brent Burns, who making a beeline for the net. Assists went to Hertl and Middleton.

The Sharks out-shot the Flyers 16-9 in the second period. Their power play had two chances but no shots. Their penalty kill allowed one shot and took three in two kills.

Midway through the third period, the Sharks had to kill a 5-on-3, with Brent Burns and Timo Meier in the box. Their penalty kill allowed just two shots. San Jose followed that up by stretching out a delayed penalty for 45 seconds with a line change thrown in. In all, the Sharks out-shot the Flyers 16-7 in the third. Still, the Flyers scored.

Joel Farabee took a pass from Oskar Lindblom and took a shot from the top of the face-off circle. His shot got by Middleton’s stick and Reimer’s blocker to tie the game. Assists went to Lindblom and Yandle.

Tomas Hertl ended it in the final 30 seconds of overtime. Erik Karlsson carried the puck in with Hertl 2-on-1 against Travis Sanheim. Karlsson centered the puck at the last second. Hertl’s first shot did not go but he knocked the rebound in.

The Sharks only won 46% of the face-offs but they out-shot the Flyers 46-25.

The Sharks next play on Sunday against the Penguins in Pittsburgh at 10:00 AM PT. The Sharks added defenseman Mario Ferraro to their COVID-19 protocol list Thursday, and removed forward Jonathan Dahlen.

Canucks Sink Sharks 5-2, Meier Scores 100th

Timo Meier (28) is congratulated by San Jose Sharks teammate Erik Karlsson (65) after scoring his 100th career goal in the first period at SAP Center in San Jose on Thu Dec 16, 2021 (AP News photo)

By Mary Walsh

SAN JOSE– The San Jose Sharks fell 5-2 to the Vancouver Canucks Thursday. Bo Horvat, J.T. Miller, Jason Dickinson scored for Vancouver, and Brock Boeser scored twice. Thatcher Demko made 34 saves for the win. Timo Meier and Andrew Cogliano scored for San Jose and Adin Hill made 25 saves in the loss,

The win lifted the Canucks record to 6-0 since Bruce Boudreau took over as head coach. Meanwhile, the Sharks have just two wins in their last six outings. Tomas Hertl is on a 6 game point streak and Timo Meier’s goal was his 100th in the NHL.

Afte the game, Sharks Head Coach Bob Boughner shared his impression of his team’s performance:

“I thought that, you know, the way we played tonight, I felt good about our team. I felt good about the way we played but we just didn’t execute, like I said, we didn’t capitalize. I thought that, you know, we probably needed a save earlier that we didn’t get. And sometimes that’s demoralizing too, when you’re sitting on the bench thinking you’re carrying the play and you’re chasing the game.”

Sharks forward Andrew Cogliano said: “It seems like, you know, opportunities that they get are going in and we’re not fighting hard enough to score our goals. We just have to be more desperate. I think we’re in a situation now where we’ve given some games back in a race that there’s a lot of teams in. And our will to win needs to increase.”

Brock Boeser scored the first goal of the game at 12:41 of the first period. Tanner Pearson made a pass across the ice to Boeser, who took the shot from just above the hask marks.

Bo Horvat made it 2-0 with a power play goal at 16:23. J.T. Miller made a cross-ice pass to Horvat, who was just below the hash marks that Boeser scored from. Assists went to J.T. Miller and Quinn Hughes.

Timo Meier cut the Canucks lead in half with a goal at 17:22. An Erik Karlsson shot was blocked and bounced out to Meier in the face-off circle. His shot went through traffic and in. Assists went to Erik Karlsson and Tomas Hertl.

Brock Boeser made it 3-1 with his second of the game at 17:17 of the second period. J.T. Miller passed the puck up from below the goal line and found Boeser in the face-off circle. Boeser took the shot and the puck went off of Hill’s glove and before going into the net just under the bar. Assists went to Miller and Tanner Pearson.

Andrew Cogliano made it 3-2 at 8:29 of the third period. Cogliano chased down his own dump-in and took a shot from a bad angle that may have suprised Demko. Assists went to Lane Pederson and Brent Burns.

J.T Miller scored into an empty net at 17:32. Jason Dickinson scored into an empty net at 18:57. Assists went to Elias Petterson and Kyle Burroughs.

The Sharks out-shot the Canucks 34-30 in the game. In the third period, however, while the Sharks trailed, the Canucks out-shot the Sharks 15-11. The Canucks won 57% of the face-offs. The Sharks had one power play and it had two shots on goal. The Sharks penalty kill allowed three shots and one goal in three penalties.

Jayden Halbgewachs made his NHL debut with the Sharks Thursday. He took one penalty and had three shots on goal in 16:44 of ice time with the second line.

The Sharks will host the Vancouver Canucks again on Tuesday, at 7:30 PM PT.

Sharks Fall 3-1 to Kraken; Seattle strikes with 3 goals in third period

Seattle Kraken center Jared McCann (16) puts one on goal against San Jose Sharks goaltender James Reimer (47) in the second period at SAP Center in San Jose on Tue Dec 14, 2021 (AP News photo)

By Mary Walsh

SAN JOSE– In their first ever matchup, the San Jose Sharks fell 3-1 to the Seattle Kraken. Ryan Donato, Brandon Tanev and Calle Jarnkrok scored for Seattle and Chris Driedger made 33 saves for the win. Logan Couture scored for San Jose and James Reimer made 27 saves in the loss.

After the game, Sharks Head Coach Bob Boughner said:

“Any time you’re not scoring a goal until you pull the goalie it’s going to be a tough way to win a hockey game and you almost gotta play perfect on the other side of the puck. And, you know, I didn’t think we played bad defensively but I think we opened it up, down 1-0, gave them a few chances.”

Sharks forward Timo Meier, who had five shots in the game, said: “Obviously, frustrating to lose this game. You know, we were right there the whole game. Had a tough time to score some goals. Their goalie made some big saves. I thought we didn’t do enough in the offensive zone, we didn’t work hard enough to get that bounce and score that goal earlier.”

The first two periods were scoreless. Seattle outshot San Jose 11-8 in the first, while San Jose outshot Seattle 12-7 in the second. There was a single penalty in the game, to Seattle in the second period. The Sharks power play got two shots on goal.

Ryan Donato scored the first goal of the game at 6:23 of the third. Joonas Donskoi took a shot that Reimer stopped but Donato was on the doorstep to gather up the rebound. The puck went off of Radim Simek’s skate and into the net. Assists went to Donskoi and Carson Soucy.

Brandon Tanev made it 2-0 at 14:18. Morgan Geekie caught a pass from Calle Jarnkrok in the neautral zone and carried it to the Sharks net. He got a pass around Brent Burns, setting Tanev up for the shot. Assists went to Geekie and Calle Jarnkrok.

Logan Couture scored with the Sharks net empty at 17:53. Brent Burns took a shot through traffic and the puck went off of a defenseman. It bounced right to Couture in the face-off circle. Couture put the puck into an open net. Assists went to Burns and Tomas Hertl.

Calle Jarnkrok scored into the empty net with six seconds left. Mason Appleton and Alex Wennberg got the assists.

The final shot count was 34-30 Sharks. In the face-off circle, the Sharks edged the Kraken, winning 51% of the draws,

The Sharks next play on Thursday, against the Vancouver Canucks in San Jose at 7:30 PM PT.

Sharks Beat Stars 2-1, Reimer Returns, Hertl scores

San Jose Sharks center Tomas Hertl (48) scores on Dallas Stars right wing Alexander Radulov (47) and goaltender Braden Holtby (70) at SAP Center in San Jose on Sat Dec 11, 2021 (AP News photo)

By Mary Walsh

SAN JOSE– Tomas Hertl and Erik Karlsson scored for San Jose. That goal tied Karlsson for third in the NHL among defensemen. James Reimer made 34 saves for the win. Michael Raffl scored for Dallas and Braden Holtby made 23 saves in the loss.

The Stars’ power play is ranked fourth in the NHL right now, so it was a good sign for the Sharks that their penalty kill was perfect Saturday. After the game, Sharks Head Coach Bob Boughner said:

“Our penalty kill has been sort of our backbone all year and we take a lot of pride in that. It was nice to respond. This is a good power play here in Dallas. I thought we did a really good job of coming up with sort of a game plan to nullify that shot Klingberg has at the top.”

Tomas Hertl deflected Timo Meier’s shot to start the scoring at 8:30. Meier spun on the face-off dot before taking the shot. The puck ramped off of Hertl’s stick and went off the top bar and in. Assists went to Timo Meier and Alexander Barabanov. That was Hertl’s 14th goal of the season, and he has now scored in four games in a row.

The Sharks took two penalties in the first period, and allowed five shots to the Dallas power play. The Stars out-shot the Sharks 14-6, and beat them in the face-off circle 61% of the time.

Erik Karlsson scored with a hard shot from the blue line at 16:28. The Stars challenged it for goaltender interference as Tomas Hertl was in the blue paint behind Braden Holtby. Dallas defenseman Esa Lindell helped Hertl get into that spot. Assists went to Timo Meier and Alexander Barabanov. That was Karlsson’s eighth of the season.

The goal held up and the Sharks earned a power play from the failed challenge. The Stars killed the penalty, spending much of the penalty time in the Sharks zone.

The Sharks took one penalty in the second period and gave up two shots to the Stars power play. The Stars took two penalties. The Dallas penalty kill gave up one shot to the Sharks power play, and got one short-handed shot on goal. The second period shot count was 11-10 Sharks, and in the face-off circle, 54% to the Stars.

Michael Raffl cut the lead in half by deflecting Radek Faksa’s shot over James Reimer at 8:26 of the third period. Assists went to Faksa and Jani Hakanpaa. It was Raffl’s third goal of the season.

At the time the goal was scored, the shot count was 6-2 Dallas. After the goal, the Sharks reasserted themselves on offense and balanced out the shot disparity. Noah Gregor and Jonathan Dahlen in particular had some good shifts in the o-zone. The final shot count was 35-25 Stars, with the face-off wins also going to Dallas at 53%.

Kevin Labanc was injured on his first shift of the game and did not return. After the game, Boughner had no specific updates on Labanc’s condition but he said it was some type of upper body injury.

Timo Meier had two assists in the game but he is still chasing his 100th NHL goal.

The Sharks next play on Tuesday at 7:30 PM PT. They will host the Seattle Kraken for their first meeting ever.

Sharks Fall 5-2 to Wild, Wild Win Streak at Eight

Minnesota Wild center Victor Rask (49) tries to get control of the puck against San Jose Sharks center Noah Gregor (73) in the first period at the SAP Center in San Jose on Thu Dec 9, 2021 (AP News photo)

By Mary Walsh

SAN JOSE– The Sharks fell 5-2 to the Minnesota Wild Thursday. It was the Wild’s eight win in a row. Wild goals were scored by Kevin Fiala, Joel Eriksson Ek, Jordan Greenway (2) and Kirill Kaprizov. Cam Talbot made 33 saves for the win. Sharks goals were scored by Jonathan Dahlen and Tomas Hertl. Adin Hill made 22 saves in the loss.

To start the third period, Sharks Head Coach Bob Boughner juggled his lines a bit. The result was positive but not enough, as he explained after the game:

“We switched up the lines a little bit, sometimes it’s good to put them in the blender when things aren’t going your way. We did that and the team reacted but, it’s just, you know, it’s a good team and in order to beat those good teams you have to be good for sixty minutes, especially our team and it I think that it took too long to find our game tonight.”

Minnesota’s Kevin Fiala scored the lone goal of the first period, 6:22 in. Jon Merrill’s shot was blocked by Mario Ferraro right in front of the net. The puck dropped in front of an open net for Fiala’s shot. Assists went to Merrill and Brandon Duhaime.

Joel Eriksson Ek scored the the Wild’s first power play goal at 7:04 of the second period. Jacob Middleton was in the box for tripping Mats Zuccarello. Zuccarello sent the puck into a crowd in front of the net and it went off of Eriksson Ek’s stick for a perfect deflection past Hill. Assists went to Zuccarello and Kirill Kaprizov.

Jordan Greenway scored Minnesota’s second power play goal at 15:20. Jacob Middleton was in the box for holding Nick Bjugstad. Kevin Fiala brought the puck into the slot, then made a pass out to Greenway in the face-off circle. Greenway took a quick shot and beat Hill on the far side. Assists went to Fiala and Alex Goligoski.

Jonathan Dahlen scored for San Jose 3:29 into the third period. Tomas Hertl won an offensive zone face-off and sent the puck up to Erik Karlsson at the point. Karlsson brought the puck down the boards a bit before taking a shot that went off of Dahlen in front of the net. Assists went to Karlsson and Hertl.

Tomas Hertl cut the Wild lead to one with a power play goal at 13:26. Jonathan Dahlen took a shot that created a rebound. The puck fell to Hertl at the side of the net and he lifted it in behind Talbot. Jonathan Dahlen and Logan Couture got the assists.

The Sharks pulled Adin Hill for the extra skater with more than to minutes left. The Wild got the puck out and Jordan Greenway raced Brent Burns for the puck. As they reached the net, Greenway was able to nudge the puck in to make it 4-2. Moments later, with the net still empty, Kirill Kaprizov broke away to make it 5-2.

The Sharks had a good night in the face-off circle, winning 57% of them. The shots were close in the first to periods, but in the third, the Sharks outshot the Wild 19-9. the Sharks penalty kill gave up four shots along with the two goals, and the Wild penalty kill gave up four shots and one goal. Jacob Middleton took three penalties in the game.

The Sharks next play on Saturday at 7:30 PM PT, against the visiting Dallas Stars.