Marleau saves the
day Squeeker in Minny extends streak to
9 3/9/08 - by Mike Lee
enjoyed their visit to Minnesota on Sunday afternoon that they decided to
extend it by giving up the lead on a whacky goal with 19 seconds left in
regulation. After a wild overtime period, Sharks captain Patrick Marleau sealed
the overtime victory 3-2. The win was San Jose's 9th consecutive, setting a new
Patrick Marleau made an incredible save in the
overtime after Marion Gaborik chipped a shot over Nabokov. The puck was
floating toward the Sharks net, but the San Jose captain swatted the puck out
of the air, clearing it to safety.
Carrying an 8 ame winning streak
into Minneapolis, the Sharks had much to prove.
San Jose has made a
habit of scoring first on their franchise best winning streak, and they wasted
no time staking claim to the lead. Milan Michalek scored his 21st goal of the
season just 46 seconds into the game. Michalek took a centering pass from Brian
Campbell at the Wild blueline then sent a 40 foot wrist shot past Niklas
Backstrom from the high slot.
Evgeni Nabokov got a little help from
his right post later in the period when a Wild shot clanked off the pipe, then
sat precariously between his skates. The Sharks netminder was able to clear it
from danger, but not before two Wild skaters converged on the crease.
Tomas Plihal made it 2-0 San Jose at 13:44 of the period on a penalty shot
after Keith Carney hooked the Sharks rookie on a breakaway. Plihal faked a move
to the backhand before lifting the puck over Backstrom's stick.
Foster cut the sharks lead in half with a blast from the right point. Foster's
shot appeared to get tipped by Jody Shelley's stick, but Nabokov appeared to
have it contained. The puck hit the Sharks goaltender in the left shoulder,
then skip into the net.
Pavel Dimitra missed on a chance from 10 feet
after Kyle McLaren sent a blind pass behind his own net that was intercepted by
Carney 6 minutes into the 3rd period. Dimitra had to be perfect with the shot
after Nabokov squared himself to the goal line, but puck hit the Sharks
netminder in the chest.
The Sharks got another scare with 1:40 left in
regulation when a dump in landed behind defenseman Brian Campbell, who had no
idea where the puck was. Paul-Marc Bouchard got a shot off from 15 feet out,
but the puck deflected into the netting.
Minnesota head coach Jacques Lemaire pulled Backstrom
with a minute to play, then called a timeout after Torrey Mitchell iced the
puck with 33.1 seconds left in regulation.
The Wild would get a gift
from the heavens on the ensuing faceoff. Minnesota would win the faceoff and
pull the draw back to the point. Brian Rolston would send the puck in on net,
hitting Craig Rivet in front of the right post. The puck would should across
the slot, hit Marc-Edouard Vlassic in the shin pad, then deflect into the
Sharks net with 19 ticks left on the clock.
Both teams exchanged
scoring chances in the overtime period, but Minnesota came closest to scoring.
If not for Marleau's stick induced rejection, the Wild would have been
celebrating a huge comeback win.
In the shootout Nabokov stoned Mikko
Koivu with a pad save against the left post. Joe Pavelski then snapped home a
wrist shot over Backstrom's glove hand. Gaborik missed on a shot that hit
Nabokov in the left pad.
Jonathan Cheechoo missed on a back hand
attempt after fooling Backstrom. Cheechoo had a wide open net, but the puck
slipped off his stick, sliding wide of the left post. Bouchard tied it up with
a spin-o-rama play that left Nabokov shaking his head.
things with a simple wrister that found the upper left corner of the net.
The sharks moved into sole posession of 1st place in
the Pacific Division, pending the outcome of the Dallas Stars game with
Colorado on Sunday night.
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2nd period - Michalek,
SJ (holding), 7:24; Rolston, MIN (hooking), 8:10; Rissmiller, SJ (tripping),
3rd period - None.
Overtime - None.
SJ - Nabokov
MIN - Backstrom
Shots On Goal
Power Play Conversion
0 of 1
0 of 2
3 Stars of the Game
Referees: Peel, St
Pierre. Linesmen: Devorski, Nelson.
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