Welcomed In, Then Ushered Out: Kraken seize Sharks first trip to Seattle, win 3-2

By Morris Phillips

SEATTLE–In the NHL, physical confrontations win games. They create lingering animosity, spark rivalries and snap losing spells too.

Mark Giordano knows better than anyone. The 38-year old played 949 games in a Flames sweater, followed by a mere 33 games with expansion Seattle, but enough hockey to provide him the savvy to sense an opening by dropping the gloves with 20-year old Adam Raska of the Sharks.

Giordano’s instincts, and fists highlighted his well-rounded evening on the ice as the Kraken rallied to defeat the Sharks 3-2 in San Jose’s first NHL visit to Seattle.

The Sharks failed to leapfrog the Kings and Ducks in tightly-bunched Pacific Division standings while the Kraken won in regulation for the first time in a month ruptured by a pair of COVID interruptions that forced the team into seven game cancelations.

“The consistency in our game wasn’t there early,” Kraken coach Dave Hakstol said. “I give our guys credit for stepping up in the second and third period and finding a way to get it done.”

The Sharks needed just 38 seconds to introduce themselves to the Climate Pledge Arena crowd with Tomas Hertl’s goal assisted by Alexander Barabanov. The goal was Hertl’s team-leading 21st, and Barabanov contributed on his first shift after missing three games due to COVID protocols.

The first period was an illustration of the host’s struggles, which saw them drop nine straight before beating the Blackhawks on Monday. Talented and experienced in the realm of league expansion teams, the Kraken have seen their developing chemistry suffer under the weight of the two, inactive periods due to the virus. In the first 24 minutes Thursday, the Kraken gave the puck away five times and afforded the Sharks precious, additional scoring opportunities.

But all that disjointed play ended when Mason Appleton maintained control despite taking a big hit against the wall, then shuttled the puck to an open Carson Soucy, who delivered the Kraken’s first goal from inside the face-off circle.

Soucy’s goal enlivened the crowd, and a subsequent goal that was waved off for offsides upon video review, didn’t see that momentum to dissipate. Again Soucy stepped up, battling his way through traffic for a second goal four minutes after the first, putting the Kraken up, 2-1.

Two penalties against the Sharks followed that for seven seconds gave Seattle a 5 on 3 advantage. Both were killed, but San Jose’s biggest threats, Timo Meier and Hertl missed ice time as the penalty killers worked. The momentum swung to the Kraken and their crowd.

“After the first, we stopped playing,” Hertl said. “They were all over us, they managed the game better and we couldn’t find a way. It’s a tough loss because everybody knows what is coming–the last five games before the break.”

Giordano was already having a big night with an assist and some gritty defensive stops. When Raska drew a cross checking penalty from Soucy, the 6’1″ Giordano got in Raska’s face accusing him of being a bit of an actor. The gloves dropped, the punches flew and the crowd howled. Both players were assessed fighting majors.

For Raska, in just his fourth NHL game, it was a lesson that left him overwhelmed. For Giordano, experiencing his first fighting major in three years was a cerebral act and in some ways a game decider.

Philipp Grubauer, the Kraken’s goaltender countered a very disappointing month with a pair of saves on Hertl, one each on Brett Burns and Barbarov, as well as corraling Meier’s breakaway opportunity earlier in the period. He finished with 22 saves.

The Sharks had chances. Along with the giveaways they were afforded, they went 1 of 6 on the power play, and saw Seattle’s Riley Sheahan win 12 of his 17 faceoffs, most of those in special team situations.

Calle Jarnkrok put the Kraken up 3-1 in the third with Giordano picking up his second assist.

The Kraken’s pair of wins in their first two encounters with San Jose puts them in the company of the 1998 Predators and 2017 Golden Knights as the only expansion teams to defeat the Sharks consecutively.

Meier kept up his torrid goal scoring streak by cashing in a power play opportunity in the third that trimmed the Sharks deficit to 3-2. Despite another power play opportunity in the game’s final two minutes, the Sharks were denied.

Adin Hill had 16 saves for the Sharks as he got the starting assignment in place of James Reimer. Hill avoided disaster in the third period when he found himself out of the crease with the Kraken on the attack, but he gave his team a chance. Still, the loss was Hill’s 12th, the most he’s had in any of his five NHL seasons.

The Sharks next skate on Saturday at home in a difficult match-up with Steven Stamkos and the Tampa Bay Lightning, who are atop the Atlantic Division along with the Florida Panthers.

SHARKS’ GOAL SCORING CONUNDRUM: The Sharks aren’t particularly adept at scoring goals, ranking 22nd in the NHL with 2.76 goals per game. However, Timo Meier and Tomas Hertl are tied for seventh in individual goal scoring with 21 each. The issue? What if either misses extended time in the season’s second half, which for the Sharks, begins on Saturday with a home date with the Lightning? The burden for goal scoring falls upon Logan Couture and Brent Burns, and neither is suited to be a front line sniper.

Could the team be in the market for another goal scorer in the trade market? Most likely, yes.

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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 Win in Buffalo, Beat Sabres 3-2

San Jose Sharks goaltender Adin Hill stops one of the 37 shots he saved against the Buffalo Sabers this one in the first period in Buffalo on Thu Jan 6, 2022 (AP News photo)

By Mary Walsh

The San Jose Sharks defeated the Buffalo Sabres 3-2 Thursday. It was just the Sharks’ fourth win in Buffalo in franchise history. Matt Nieto, Timo Meier, and Tomas Hertl scored for the Sharks. Adin Hill made 36 saves for the win. Jeff Skinner and Zemgus Girgensons scored for the Sabres. Ukko-Pekka Luukkonen made 18 saves in the loss.

The Sharks were again without Logan Couture and Jonathan Dahlen but defenseman Mario Ferraro returned to the lineup from the COVID-19 list. Goaltender James Reimer was also unavailable due to a lower body injury of unspecified severity. This puts some pressure on Adin Hill to return to form as the starter.

Sharks Head Coach Bob Boughner mentioned that Adin Hill had his swagger back in Thursday’s game, and the team fed off of that confidence. He summed up the team’s performance as: “We weren’t perfect but we were a lot better and it’s a good sign.”

Sharks forward Matt Nieto talked about scoring a goal with his line-mates Andrew Cogliano and Nick Bonino: “We haven’t really created offense the way we would like to. We think we’ve gotten a lot of chances so it’s nice to get one tonight. Hopefully more start coming.”

Nieto started a brief first-period flurry of scoring for the Sharks at 12:27. Andrew Cogliano sent the puck up from the goal line to Nieto inside the face-off dot. Nieto took the shot from an awkward angle but got it by Luukkonen on the blocker side. Assists went to Cogliano and Nick Bonino.

Timo Meier made it 2-0 at 13:44. Tomas Hertl got the puck across the line and then dropped it to Meier. Meier took a quick shot from the point and rang it off the post and in. Assists went to Hertl and Mario Ferraro.

Tomas Hertl made it 3-0 at 17:24. Alexander Barabanov cleared the puck out of the Sharks zone and then chased it down to carry it into the Sabres zone. He dropped it to a trailing Hertl who took the shot from the slot for his 17th of the season.

Jeff Skinner scored for Buffalo at 7:56 of the second. Skinner pulled the puck out of a board battle and carried it to the slot before taking the shot. The puck went over Hill’s stick, off the post and in. Victor Olofsson got the assist.

Zemgus Girgensons made it 3-2 with a power play goal at 18:14 of the third. Tage Thompson took a shot from the point that went off of the bar and came back out to bounce down Hill’s shoulder before landing behind him. Before Hill could find it, Girgensons swept it in. Assists went to Thompson and Rasmus Dahlin.

The Sabres pulled their goaltender with 92 seconds left and made a good push but the Sharks held on.

The Sabres out-shot the Sharks in every period for a shot total of 39-21, and in the third period they out-shot the Sharks 22-5. The Sabres also beat the Sharks in the face-off circle, winning 60% of the draws. The Sharks only had one power play but had no shots on that one. The Sabres had three power plays in which they had seven shots and a goal.

The Sharks’ next game is on Saturday in Philadelphia against the Flyers at 4:00 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.

Sharks Beat Coyotes 8-7 in Shoot-Out

San Jose Sharks center Tomas Hertl scores as teammates congratulate him in the third period with Jayden Halbgewachs (89), Mario Ferraro (38), Noah Gregor (73) and Brent Burns (88) against the Arizona Coyotes on Tue Dec 28, 2021 at SAP Center in San Jose (AP News photo)

By Mary Walsh

SAN JOSE- The San Jose Sharks won 8-7 in a barn-burner against the Arizona Coyotes on Tuesday. Alexander Barabanov, Nick Bonino, Radim Simek, Jeffrey Viel, Timo Meier, Tomas Hertl and Logan Couture scored for the Sharks. James Reimer made 39 saves for the win. Lawson Crouse (2), Janis Moser(2), Clayton Keller, Shayne Gostisbehere and Andrew Ladd scored for the Coyotes. Scott Wedgewood made 20 saves in the loss.

On Monday, Adin Hill was added to the Sharks COVID-19 protocol list. Jonathan Dahlen and Tomas Hertl were added to the list list on December 21. Brent Burns was put on the list on the 17th, and removed from it on December 26. That made him available to play his 1200th game Tuesday.

Shortly after a fight between Jonah Gadjovich and Jan Jenik, Alexander Barabanov started the scoring at 2:46 of the first period. Logan Couture took a shot from the slot that banked perfectly off of Barabanov and into the net. Couture and Timo Meier got the assists.

Lawson Crouse tied it up at 5:36. Phil Kessel set up the shot with a pass from the corner, to Crouse in the slot.

Nick Bonino made it 2-1 Sharks at 11:22. Bonino started the play by knocking the puck off of Shayne Gostisbehere’s stick. When Andrew Cogliano took a shot, Bonino was on hand to gather the rebound and backhand it in. Assists went to Matt Nieto and Andrew Cogliano.

Janis Moser tied it back up at 17:40, scoring his first NHL goal. Lawson Crouse got the puck away from Brent Burns below the goal line and made a qick pass up to Moser for the shot. An assist went to Crouse.

The Sharks had the only power play of the first period, and had two shots with the man advantage. The Coyotes out-shot the Sharks 14-8 in the first.

Radim Simek gave the Sharks a 3-2 lead at 5:27 of the second period. Tomas Hertl was in front of the net when Simek tooka shot from the blue line. The puck went between Hertl and Janis Moser and over Wedgewood’s glove. Assists went to Jayden Halbgewachs and Marc-Edouard Vlasic.

Jeffrey Viel scored his first NHL goal to give the Sharks a 4-2 lead at 5:34. Viel may have been making a pass to center ice, where Jonah Gadjovich was going to the net. The puck never reached Gadjovich, and instead went off of a Coyote defender and into the net. Assists went to Gadjovich and Lane Pederson.

Clayton Keller got one back for Arizona at 7:48. The Coyotes were having trouble getting through the neutral zone when Phil Kessel found Keller across the ice and in the open. Keller was into the zone and taking the shot before the Sharks could get to him. Assists went to Kessel and Johan Larsson.

Timo Meier restored the Sharks’ two-goal lead at 14:13. With Couture, Barabanov and Meier attacking the net, Meier knocked the puck out of the air and over the goaltender for his 13th of the season. Assists went to Barabanov and Couture.

Janis Moser cut the lead back down to one, with his second NHL goal, on the power play at 19:37. After a failed clear, the Sharks penalty kill was looking weary when Moser took the shot from the blue line. The puck went by five skaters and in. Assists went to Larsson and Loui Eriksson.

The Coyotes had the only second period power play, and had two shots with the man advantage. Arizona out-shot San Jose again, this time 14-11.

Tomas Hertl made it 6-4 at 1:44 of the third. Noah Gregor got the puck to Hertl with a back-hand centering pass from the boards. Hertl put it away with a slap shot, scoring his 15th of the season.

Lawson Crouse scored for Arizona at 7:35. Crouse gathered a loose puck up at the corner of the net, then slipped between Reimer and Erik Karlsson before lifting the puck into the net. Assists went to Dysin Mayo and Phil Kessel.

Logan Couture scored the Sharks’ seventh of the night at 13:00. Still in the neutral zone, Erik Karlsson banked the puck off of the end boards. Barabanov got to it first and the dropped it to Couture for the shot. Assists went to Barabanov and Karlsson.

Shayne Gostisbehere scored for Arizona at 16:51. Gostisbehere took a shot from the blue line that went off of Nick Bonino and in. Assists went to Kessel and Larsson.

Andrew Ladd tied the game at 18:31 on the power play. Ladd was the last Coyote to touch it before it bounced up and over Reimer and into the net. Assists went to Crouse and Gostisbehere.

The Sharks penalty kill gave up 8 shots and a goal in the third period across two penalties. The Sharks power play got no shots on goal in the third. In overtime, the Sharks power play got one shot on goal and gave up two short-handed shots to the Coyotes. The Coyotes won 57% of the face-offs.

The game went to a shootout after a scoreless overtime. Logan Couture and Tomas Hertl scored for San Jose, Nick Schmaltz missed for Arizona and James Reimer stopped Clayton Keller.

The Sharks next play on Thursday at 7:30 PM PT in San Jose against the Philadelphia Flyers.


On Sunday, Jim Wiley passed away at the age of 71. Wiley was the Sharks’ third Head Coach, coaching the Sharks for most of the 1995-1996 season. He was a professional hockey player for eight years, from 1972-1980. He went on to coach for fourteen years, retiring in 2008.

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 Beat Back Flames 5-3, Hertl Scores Hat Trick

San Jose Sharks left wing Jasper Weatherby (26) screens Calgary Flames goaltender Dan Vladar (80) to allow a goal by center Tomas Hertl to score in the first period at SAP Center on Tue Dec 7, 2021 (AP News photo)

By Mary Walsh

SAN JOSE– The San Jose Sharks came back from a two goal defecit to win 5-3 against the Calgary Flames Tuesday. The Sharks got goals from Erik Karlsson and Logan Couture and Tomas Hertl scored a hat trick. Logan Couture passed the 600 point mark in his NHL career. Adin Hill, making his fourth start in a row, made 40 saves for the win. Dillon Dube, Johnny Gaudreau and Adam Ruzicka scored for the Flames. Dan Vladar made 22 saves in the loss.

Tomas Hertl’s three goals and one in the previous game signal a shift from a 10 game dry spell, during which he had just two goals. Of this sudden productivity, Sharks Head Coach Bob Boughner said:

“Yeah, he was frustrated for a couple weeks, a few weeks getting chances but not putting it in. We had a talk the other day and he just, good players do that. He’s a heck of a player in this league I think. You knew it was going to come, just like [Bonino] a few weeks ago, we were talking about it. You don’t play that long in the league and have that much success and the switch goes off.”

Calgary’s Dillon Dube started the scoring just 97 seconds into the game. Milan Lucic made a quick pass from the outside to the slot and the puck went off of Dube and also Mario Ferraro right in front of the net. Lucic got the assist.

Tomas Hertl tied the game with his tenth of the season, on a power play at 8:58. Alexander Barabanov made a pass from one face-off circle to Hertl in the other. Hertl took the shot off the pass and put it in the top corner on the short side. Barabanov and Brent Burns got the assists.

Johnny Gaudreau scored his tenth of the season, giving Calgary the lead back at 11:55. Matthew Tkachuk made a nifty between-the legs pass from almost behind the net. The pass found Gaudreau on the doorstepTkachuk and Elias Lindholm got the assists.

Adam Ruzicka scored the first of his career at 4:31 of the second period. Christopher Tanev’s shot created a rebound and Ruzicka kept after it until he could push it around Hill’s skate and in. Tanev and Brad Richardson got the assists.

Erik Karlsson cut the lead down with a break-away goal as he came out of the penalty box. Logan Couture spotted him and got the puck up to him as the penalty expired. Assists went to Couture and Jasper Weatherby.

Logan Couture tipped an Erik Karlsson shot, tying the game again on the power play at 14:27. Jonathan Dahlen got the secondary assist.

Tomas Hertl gave the Sharks a lead with his second of the night at 18:10. Alexander Barabanov’s shot created a rebound close to the goal line. Hertl was there to lift it in.

At 6:29 of the third period, Lane Pederson went into the boards by the bench, head-first, with some help from Milan Lucic. Pederson returned from the dressing room very quickly and no penalty was assessed.

Calgary pulled their goaltender for the extra skater with a little under two minutes left in the third. Tomas Hertl scored his third of the night into the empty net at 18:10.

With just under ten seconds left in the game, Ferraro’s clearing attempt hit referee Michael Markovic in the face and he needed help to leave the ice.

The Flames beat the Sharks in the face-off circle in 59% of the draws. They out-shot the Sharks 43-27. The Sharks power play had two chances and scored on both. Their penalty kill gave up three shots and produced three short-handed shots.

The Sharks next play on Thursday in San Jose against the Minnesota Wild at 7:30 PM PT.

Sharks Fall to Blue Jackets 6-4, Give up Lead Twice

Columbus Blue Jackets’ Max Domi, right, takes a leap over San Jose Sharks’ Erik Karlsson (left) stick during the second period at Nationwide Arena in Columbus on Sun Dec 5, 2021 (AP News photo)

By Mary Walsh

The San Jose Sharks fell 6-4 to the Columbus Blue Jackets on Sunday. Columbus got goals from Sean Kuraly, Cole Sillinger, Jack Roslovic, Alexandre Texier and two from Adam Boqvist. Elvis Merzlikins made 30 saves for the win. Sharks goals came from Nick Bonino, Erik Karlsson, Brent Burns and Tomas Hertl. Adin Hill made 24 saves in the loss.

After the game, Sharks Head Coach Bob Boughner said: “I think that it was a tale of two games. I thought I liked our start even though we got out of period one 1-1. The second period, you know, we did some good things but we didn’t manage our game properly.” He went on in some detail:

“Mario fanned on the one, but then we’re all over them and we let them come back on the two-on-one goal. Roslovic got behind us, you know, break away. You know, just, dumb plays, and they come back to haunt you. Again, you score four goals on the road and you feel like you should come away with at least a point.”

Adam Boqvist scored the first goal for Columbus at 16:16 of the first period. Justin Danforth had the puck knocked off of his stick but it went across the ice to Boqvist in the opposite face-off circle. Hill got across to face the shot but it slipped by him. Danforth got the assist.

Nick Bonino tied it up for the Sharks with three seconds left in the period. Matt Nieto pushed the puck out from behind the net and Bonino jumped on it at the crease. Matt Nieto and Andrew Cogliano got the assists.

Erik Karlsson gave the Sharks a lead 21 seconds into the second period. Alexander Barabanov carried the puck out of the defensive zone and into the o-zone. He found Karlsson with a pass just as Karlsson crossed the blue line. Karlsson took the shot right away and beat Merzlikins. Barabanov got the assist.

Sean Kuraly tied it back up less than 30 seconds later, off a two-on one with Andrew Peeke against Brent Burns. Assists went to Peeke and Alexander Texler.

Brent Burns grabbed the lead back for San Jose at 8:44, with a blast from the blue line that flew by three Blue Jackets, hit Merzlikins in the sleeve and went into the net. Assists went to Matt Nieto and Timo Meier.

Cole Sillinger tied it back up at 17:48, off another two-on-one, this time with Mario Ferraro back. Sillinger took the shot from the hash marks and beat Hill on the blocker side.

Jack Roslovic gave the Blue Jackets the lead again 1:57 into the third period. Roslovic beat three Sharks defenders to the net for a back-hand shot around Hill’s outstretched glove. Assists went to Max Domi and Andrew Peeke.

Adam Boqvist scored his second of the night at 5:34, giving the Blue Jackets a two goal lead. Gabriel Carlsson caught a pass from Jakub Voracek on the boards. As he skated to the net, he made a back-hand pass across to Boqvist who was just arriving above the blue paint. Assists went to Carlsson and Voracek.

Tomas Hertl cut the Columbus lead back down to one at 10:11 of the period. Timo Meier dug a puck out of the corner ad Jonathan Dahlen pushed it up to Hertl in the face-off circle. Assists went to Dahlen and Meier.

Gustav Nyqvist scored scored a sixth goal for Columbus at 16:42. The Sharks challenged it as an offside play and it was disallowed.

Alexandre Texier scored into the empty net at 18:53 to make it officially 6-4. Assists went to Gustav Nyqvist and Eric Robinson.

The Sharks just barely won the face-off battle, winning 51% of the draws. They won 71% of the second period draws but were beaten in the first and the third. The Sharks outshot the Blue Jackets in the first, 19-9, but were out-shot in the third 12-5, for a total shot count of 34-30 San Jose. The Sharks had no power plays, and the Blue Jackets had just one. The Sharks penalty kill gave up no shots.

The Sharks return home now, to face the Calgary Flames in San Jose on Tuesday at 7:30 PM PT.

Sharks Beat Senators 6-3; San Jose scores 3 unanswered goals in 3rd period

Timo Time the San Jose Sharks Timo Meier is exalted after scoring a third period goal against the Ottawa Senators at SAP Center in San Jose on Wed Nov 24, 2021 (AP News photo)

By Mary Walsh

SAN JOSE- The San Jose Sharks (10-8-1) won 6-3 against the Ottawa Senators (4-12-1) in San Jose on Wednesday. Matt Nieto, Tomas Hertl, Nick Bonino, Timo Meier, Logan Couture and Jacob Middleton all scored for San Jose. James Reimer made 26 saves for the win. Josh Norris, Brady Tkachuk and Connor Brown scored for the Senators and Matt Murray made 23 saves in the loss.

It was Jacob Middleton’s first NHL goal and Timo Meier had three points in the game. Nick Bonino scored his first point of the season in 700th NHL game.

The Sharks scored first but the Senators fought back to take the lead in the second period. The Sharks had a 3-0 third period to close it out. After the game, Sharks Head Coach Bob Boughner said:

“I was happy with the way we stuck with it. I think it could have went the other way on us real quickly. I didn’t like our first period at all. I thought we were playing an urgent team that was looking to get back on track and we knew they would come out hard. They won more battles than us and they were more hungry in the first period.”

The game started with and early fight, between Auston Watson and Jacob Middleton, before Matt Nieto gave the Sharks a lead at 7:16 of the first period. Nieto, Labanc and Weatherby broke into the zone three-on-two, with Nieto carrying the puck. With Weatherby driving the net, Nieto opted to take the shot and got it through on the far side. Assists went to Kevin Labanc and Erik Karlsson. It was Nieto’s first goal of the season.

Ottawa tied the game at 13:38 with a goal from Josh Norris. Assists went to Brady Tkachuk and Lassi Thomson. The goal was Norris’ eighth of the season.

The shots for the period were close, 12-11 Ottawa. Ottawa was better in the face-off circle, winning 60% of the draws. The Sharks power play had four shots on goal.

Tomas Hertl gave the Sharks the lead again just 47 seconds into the second period. Hertl carried the puck from behind his own net all the way to the other ed of the ice, finishing with a wrist shot into the near side. Assists went to Timo Meier and Mario Ferraro. It was Hertl’s eighth of the season.

The Senators tied it again at 14:38, when Brady Tkachuk scored his fourth of the season. Thomas Chabot’s shot from the circle went off of Tkachuk in the blue paint. Assists went to Chabot and Artem Zub.

Connor Brown gave the Senators their first lead of the game 93 seconds later. The teams were playing four on four when Chabot’s pass found Brown in the slot. Reimer was moving across as if to follow a cross-ice pass and he couldn’t get back in time when the pass stopped short. Assists went to Chabot and Tim Stutzle.

Nick Bonino scored his first of the season to tie it back up at 19:29 on the power play. Logan Couture made a pass down to Timo Meier on the goal line and Meier tapped it back up to Bonino for a shot from the slot.

The shots were close in the second period as well, 13-10 Senators. The Sharks improved in the face-off circle to 60%. Ottawa had three power plays as seven shots on the power play. The Sharks had two power plays and on power play shot. They also had one short-handed shot.

Timo Meier scored his seventh of the season to take the lead back for the Sharks. He held the puck for a moment, high in the slot, before sending a hard wrister under a Senators defender and over the goalie’s glove. Assists went to Rudolfs Balcers and Marc-Edouard Vlasic.

Logan Couture scored his seventh, into an empty net at 18:56. Jacob Middleton scored his first NHL goal at 19:28, into an empty net. Assists went to Andrew Cogliano and Erik Karlsson.

The Sharks power play had no shots in the the third period, and their penalty kill gave up none. Most of the penalty time in the third were overlapping our matching penalties, but the Sharks did have one full power play. The Sharks outshot the Senators 7-4 in the third.

The Sharks next play on Friday against the Toronto Maples Leafs at 7:30 PM PT.

Sharks Beat Wild 4-1; Reimer keeps pucks out of the nets with 26 saves

The Minnesota Wild’s Marco Sturm (7) takes a shot on net as San Jose Sharks goaltender James Reimer (47) gets a pad save on Tue Nov 16, 2021 in Minneapolis (AP News photo)

By Mary Walsh

The San Jose Sharks won 4-1 on the road, against the Minnesota Wild Tuesday. The win was a nice follow-up to Monday’s induction of Sharks GM, Doug Wilson, into the Hockey Hall of Fame. Mario Ferraro, Timo Meier, Erik Karlsson and Tomas Hertl scored for San Jose. James Reimer made 26 saves for the win. Joel Eriksson Ek scored for the Wild and Cam Talbot made 17 saves in the loss.

Sharks Captain Logan Couture, said, of the win: “Great effort. We played more of our style of hockey. Kind of frustrated them at times.” He also mentioned the upcoming game as a chance to show that the team is back on track: “St. Louis is a big game for us too, to finish off this trip on a good note. A three and two trip, with what we’ve gone through, would be pretty good.”

Mario Ferraro opened the scoring at 5:55 of the first. Timo Meier made a neat pass off the boards to Logan Couture, who was on his way to the net. Instead of taking the shot, Couture made a pass across to Ferraro by the opposite goal post. The puck landed right on Ferraro’s stick for the shot. It was his second goal of the season.

Timo Meier scored the next one. Coming out of the corner, he slipped between the Wild defenders to get the rebound from Marc-Edouard Vlasic’s shot. He had one knee on the ice as he took the shot for his sixth goal of the season. Assists went to Vlasic and Couture.

At the end of the first period, the Sharks led in shots 9-7. The Sharks power play got only one shot on goal, a power play that bled into the start of the second period.

Joel Eriksson Ek scored for the Wild at 5:25 of the second. Though two Sharks were right with him as he entered the zone, his shot went by them and over James Reimer’s glove. It was Eriksson Ek’s sixth of the season. Assists went to Kevin Fiala and Jonas Brodin.

At 8:42 of the second, Matt Dumba threw a hit on Alexander Barabanov that looked ugly. Tomas Hertl took issue with it and went after Dumba. Hertl went to the box for roughing. Soon after, Jonah Gadjovich tried to revisit the matter with Dumba, but Marcus Foligno wound up being his fight partner.

After the game, Boughner described these events as turning points in the game and said:

“Tommy Jumping in for Barabanov and then later on [Gadjovich] going out and, you know, looking to get physical. I think our team feeds off of that, we need that element and I think it’s very very important.”

At 9:32, Erik Karlsson scored his third of the season to make it 3-1. With the teams playing four-on-four between abbreviated power plays, Karlsson let loose a blast from the top of the circle. The shot went off of the bar and in. Assists went to Jacob Middleton and Rudolfs Balcers.

The Wild took the shot lead in the second, 13-8. Four different players spent time in the penalty box during the second, but neither team had a full power play out of it because penalties overlapped. The Sharks got two shots during their abbreviated power play and the Sharks penalty kill allowed no shots to the Wild.

Tomas Hertl scored the only goal of the third period at 9:25. The Sharks moved the puck from the goal line to above the circle and back down to Hertl who was just above the goal line. Assists went to Barabanov and Balcers. It was Hertl’s seventh goal of the season.

Late in the period, Mario Ferraro blocked a shot and seemed to sustain an upper body injury. He went down the tunnel but returned and was on the ice when the final buzzer sounded.

The Sharks made a good showing in the face-off circle, winning 59% of the draws. The Sharks penalty kill allowed just one shot in the game.

The Sharks next play on Thursday, in St. Louis against the Blues at 5:00 PM PT.