Photo credit: santacruzsentinel.com
By Pearl Allison Lo
The San Jose Sharks got back to winning behind two goals from Evander Kane, 35 saves from Aaron Dell and three assists from Tomas Hertl to beat the Montreal Canadiens at Centre Bell Thursday.
Kane, with three points, almost got a hat trick in the third. Dell’s 35 saves off 37 shots were the most saves and shots so far this season. Hertl had a season-high three assists.
It was the Sharks’ ninth straight win versus the Canadiens as they went back to their winning ways in terms of goals scored and given up.
Special teams also shined with Kane’s goals both originating from the power play and San Jose stifling Montreal three times when they had the advantage.
The Sharks almost had the first goal for the second game in a row, but the goal was called back due to offsides in the form of Barclay Goodrow’s skate being up in the air.
The Canadiens hence were the first to break through when San Jose was caught near the boards and Montreal was able to create a 2-on-1. Nick Cousins shot and the puck bounced back to him, where he was able to convert behind Dell. It was his first goal of the season and with the team at 16:36.
Undiscouraged, the Sharks got another chance when a questionable penalty was whistled against Shea Weber at 18:10. Logan Couture sent in a rocket that struck Kane’s skate as it entered the net while goalie Carey Price was out of position. This tied things up in the final minute of the first.
At 4:53 of the second, Kane showed he was able to duplicate, scoring 33 seconds after another penalty. There was nothing questionable beforehand. Brent Burns sent in a blast that Hertl tried to make go in too and Kane was on the right side of the front porch again.
San Jose subsequently went ahead 3-1 at 8:09. Labanc took the pass from Hertl and sliced the puck up to the net.
Burns went into the box for holding at 13:25 and the Canadiens tried mightily. They had six shots during the man advantage, Cousins with the last shot and after time expired, Cousins was credited with three more shots as Dell was more than up to the task in net. He added, “We had the d-men clearing it out for me.” Dell did not show any rust with his last game in net October 10th.
Melker Karlsson then got his first of the season, another goal in the last minute. It was the Sharks’ fourth goal in a row as Joe Thornton made the speedy pass.
However, 21 seconds later, Montreal made themselves known as Joel Armia made it 4-2. He took a shot from Max Domi who was against the wall on his tape and raised the puck over Dell. Armia had been out the previous two games with a lower body injury.
No goals were scored in the third but Couture called it their “best stretch of the game.” Price was removed with 2:15 to go and San Jose kept the score the same with a 6-on-4 disadvantage with 20.2 seconds left.
Up Next: The Sharks will go for .500 when Marleau face his former team, the Toronto Maple Leafs, Friday at 4 pm PT.