Photo credit: @SanJoseSharks
By Pearl Allison Lo
The St. Louis Blues almost had the game sealed with less than a minute left in the third period, but an apparent overtime hand pass made it a 5-4 loss Wednesday in Game 3.
In the playoffs, St. Louis is now 0-2 and San Jose 2-1 with the Sharks leading the series 2-1.
Dubbed “the best remaining player in the playoffs,” Logan “Clutch-ure” made his case when he sent the contest to the series’ first overtime. He tied a franchise-record for most goals in a single postseason with 16 goals. The other guy? Teammate Joe Pavelski in 2016. Couture had his first four shots of the game in the third period.
In that extra period, there was a bit of back-and-forth, which seemed to favor the Blues. However, on the final play, Timo Meier made a shot, then bounced the puck on the ice with his hand in a directing motion. Teammate Gus Nyquist raced in front and passed to Erik Karlsson who slid the puck to score. It resulted in multiple players hitting their stick, St. Louis’ Brayden Schenn swinging his twice and breaking his stick.
The call was not reviewable since none of the four on-ice officials had seen what happened.
Erik Karlsson after the game described it as, “the longest yard out there.”
If not for the way the game ended, the storyline of a tale of two periods might have prevailed. The Sharks ended the first with a 2-0 lead. However, after the second, they found themselves down 4-3 after giving up four goals, three consecutively.
“I didn’t get an explanation, except there’s a set of different of rules for two teams,” Pietrangelo said.
San Jose’s Joe Thornton and the Blues’ David Perron’s pair of goals apiece were their first multi-goal games ever in the playoffs. Kevin Labanc and Colton Parayko had assists during each player’s respective goals, Parayko’s two part of three straight assists.
Logan Couture and the Sharks had not scored since 6:54 of the second in Game 2 but that changed in the latter half of the first period.
The first goal of the playoffs came at 13:37 and snapped a 31-game streak for Karlsson as he scored his first of the playoffs and first of 2019. Micheal Haley hit Joel Edmundson, causing a turnover and Karlsson nabbed his first goal since December 29 from beyond the left faceoff circle. In San Jose’s last five games the team who has scored first has won.
Thornton made it 2-0 at 16:58 and has now scored versus each 2019 playoff opponent. He moved hard to shoot the puck along the boards and when he got it back, shot it to his left while looking back towards the net. It was Thornton’s first goal since April 26.
The second period started with the Blues coming within one of the Sharks twice and it started quick.
Alexander Steen broke onto the scene early in the second at 1:18 to make it 2-1.
18 seconds later, Brenden Dillon made a long shot, Labanc recovered the rebound behind the net and made a quick shot to Thornton with a defender in front to reestablish the two-goal lead. With space, Thornton got the puck to the net before goalie Jordan Binnington. It was Thornton’s most goals in a game since February 18 with his second of the night. Josh Dubow of the Associated Press tweeted, his “4 goals this postseason are his most in a single playoffs.”
Vladimir Tarasenko, who had been silent since May 1, made another Blues push to make it 3-2 at 4:05.
Things remained quiet until 16:03, when Perron got the Blues even at 3-3.
It became a three-goal spiral when the Sharks also received their first penalty at 17:42. Halfway in, the Blues ended up getting their first lead when Perron scored again.
St. Louis’ Vince Dunn took a shot in the face from Dillon and had to leave the game.
There was also a potential delay of game by the Blues that was not called.
Sharks coach Pete DeBoer stuck with goalie Martin Jones to start off the third period and it paid off. Jones blocked a potential hat trick shot from Perron among other saves.
The Sharks’ Justin Braun being hit up high was another controversial non-call.
With less than a minute left in the game, Joe Pavelski had the helper on the goal that sent both teams to overtime. He was denied with his own shot up front 10 seconds before.
It was smartly noted by the NBCSN broadcast that because of two straight icings, Parayko, who had been shutting down Couture, was not on ice when Couture scored.
Both Couture and Jones said, “we’ve got to play better” and Jones cited “turnovers, lost battles.”
Up Next: Game 4 remains in St. Louis for Friday’s match at 5 pm.