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Theft in the southland
Sharks steal 2 points in shootout
12/15/08 - By Mike Lee

Kicking off a three game road trip, the Sharks overcame some lethargic play and a 2-0 deficit to the Los Angeles Kings to steal a 3-2 shoot out win at the Staples Center. Brian Boucher 26 saves, then stopped 2 of 3 shooters in the shootout to earn his 8th victory of the season. Ryane Clowe and Patrick Marleau scored for San Jose to extend their win streak to 3 games, and their point streak to 14 games.

The Kings took it to San Jose early, holding shot advantages in the first two periods. Their game plan would pay dividends with two 1st period goals.

Matt Green gave the Kings the lead at 4:55 into the game on a blast from the right point that was deflected by Sharks rookie forward Lukas Kaspar. The puck appeared to hit Kaspar in the skate, deflecting it just enough to fool Sharks goaltender Brian Boucher.

Anze Kopitar had a partial break squashed by a Rob Blake hook, but it gave the Kings a power play shortly after the Green goal. Teddy Purcell would capitalize on a poor turnover by Christian Ehrhoff seconds after the Blake penalty expired. Skating in the left corner, the Sharks defenseman sent a lazy attempt along the end boards. Purcell scooped up the puck, headed toward the net and whipped a shot past Boucher for the 2-0 Kings lead.

A Kyle Quincey hooking penalty put the Sharks on the power play at 11:47 and the Sharks would capitalize to halve the Kings lead. Dan Boyle fired a shot in that bounced off the end boards right to Clowe, who was parked at the top of the crease. The Sharks forward took a step to his left, before gathering up the puck and putting it past Kings goaltender Erik Ersberg.

Jody Shelley tried to create some energy by dropping the gloves with Raitis Ivanans at 4:38 of the 2nd period in a lengthy scrap. Shelley landed a handful of jabs, but neither landed any big punches.

Ersberg injure himself midway through the period after lunging for a puck that fluttered over his head. Jason LaBarbera was forced to come in and man the pipes, but he was given an opportunity to settle himself after Clowe was called for a phantom tripping penalty on Kopitar.

A steady stream of penalties to the Sharks stymied any chances to generate much offense, so Marleau took matters into his own hands during of the Sharks penalty-kills. Drew Doughty's failure to control the puck in the offensive zone was the crack Marleau needed. The speedy Shark grabbed a loose puck at his own blueline and raced up the left side before beating LaBarbera on only the Sharks 3rd shot of the period.

Neither team seemed interested in fighting for the lead early in the 3rd period. Patrick O'Sullivan just missed on a partial break with 6 minutes to play, but Boucher stood up his 20-foot shot.

Tomas Plihal would come closest to ending things in regulation with a scoring chance in the final 2 minutes after skating around Doughty, but LaBarbera poke checked the puck safely away.

In the overtime period Michalek just missed on a move across the top of the crease, but LaBarbera turned the scoring chance aside.

In the shootout Wayne Simmons shot the puck wide. Dan Boyle lifted a shot over LaBarbera's left pad. O'Sullivan backhanded his shot past Boucher after a handful of stick-handling moves. Clowe used the same move to beat LaBarbera, beating the Kings goaltender with the backhand shot. Boucher poke checked Purcell's chance to seal the deal.

Game Notes:

Marleau's goal was his 4th in the last three games. Joe Pavelski was a scratch after suffering a lower body injury on Saturday night against the St Louis Blues. Jonathan Cheechoo missed his 7th consecutive game as he nurses an upper body injury.


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Scoring
1 2 3 OT SO T
SJ 1 1 0 0 1 3
LA 2 0 0 0 0 2
1st period - 1, LA, Green 1 (O'Sullivan, Purcell), 4:55. 2, LA, Purcell (unassisted), 9:52. 3, SJ, Clowe 13 (Boyle, Vlasic), 13:12, (pp).
2nd period - 4, SJ, Marleau 16 (unassisted), 15:43, (sh).
3rd period - None.
Overtime - None.
Shootout - LA: Simmons (miss), O'Sullivan (goal), Purcell (miss). SJ: Boyle (goal), Clowe (goal).
Penalties
1st period - Blake, SJ (hooking), 7:43; Quincey, LA (hooking), 11:47; Murray, SJ (interference), 14:47.
2nd period - Plihal, SJ (hooking), 1:58; Shelley, SJ (fighting major), 4:38; Ivanans, LA (fighting major), 4:38; Clowe, SJ (tripping), 7:18; Boyle, SJ (slashing), 15:33.
3rd period - None.
Overtime - None.
Goaltending
Shots Saves
SJ - Boucher 28 26
LA - Ersberg 11 10
LA - Labarbera 14 13
Shots On Goal
1 2 3 OT T
SJ 10 4 11 0 25
LA 13 5 5 5 28
Power Play Conversion
SJ 1 of 1
LA 0 of 5
3 Stars of the Game
Brian Boucher
Patrick Marleau
Matt Green
Attendence
16,005
Officials
Referees: Kimmerly, Koharski. Linesmen: Mach, Rody.

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