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Pavelski is golden in Sharks return
Olympian nets 2nd career hat trick
2/27/14 - By Mike Lee -

With that silly little Olympic hockey tournament in the rearview mirror, the Sharks embarked on the final 23 games of the NHL's regular season with a payback game in Philadelphia on Thursday night. The Flyers kicked the Sharks in the teeth back on February 3rd with a 5-2 win at SAP Center, so San Jose exacted a little revenge with a 7-3 shellacking of their Philadelphia based hosts. Olympian Joe Pavelski led the Sharks with his 2nd hat trick of the season.

* The three week break obviously worked wonders for a Sharks roster that had been beaten down by injuries this season. San Jose received a big boost with the return of Logan Couture, and Raffi Torres. Couture missed 16 games after sustaining a hand injury in early January. The Shark is still ranked 4th on the team in scoring even after missing almost a third of San Jose's schedule.

* Torres made his season debut and did so with a bang. The Sharks forward scored a pair of goals, including the game's first. Torres set the tone for San Jose by driving to the front of the net cashing in on a deflection off Flyers goaltender Steve Mason. Jason Demers threw the puck on net from the blueline, hitting Andrew Desjardins which changed the trajectory of the shot. That distrupted Mason's line on the puck, which hit him in the shoulder before flipping over to the left post where Torres was there to punch it home.

* Philadelphia grabbed a 2-1 lead with goals by Andrej Meszaros and Brayden Schenn to close out the period. Sharks goalie Alex Stalock had to shake off the rust surrendering the pair of goals on 10Flyer shots in the period.

* San Jose went on a tear in the middle period, scoring 5 straight goals. Michael Raffl helped San Jose kick things off by tripping Adam Burish to setup one of 5 Shark power plays. Pavelski made Raffl pay for his infraction by scoring the 1st of is three goals a 4:23. Pavelski simply parked himself at the top of the crease, received a pass from Patrick Marleau, then pivoted toward the net and snapped a shot past Mason.

* Pavelski tied his career high for goals in a season with his 31st tally of the season 6 minutes later with the soft hands score of the game. Gold medalist Marc-Edouard Vlasic intercepted a Flyers clearing attempt at the left point before whipping the puck to the front of the net. Loitering near the goal, Pavelski lifted his stick waist high and clipped the puck with his blade, redirecting it under Mason's outstretched left arm.

* Couture scored the first of his 2 goals 35 seconds later, with a put-back goal from the slot. Patrick Marleau fired a shot from the blueline that Mason got a piece of with his glove, but the puck floated above him before landing in line with the left post. Couture was parked at the top of the crease and was in the perfect position to sweep home the rebound for his 15th goal of the season.

* Pavelski pushed the Sharks lead to 5-2 by mimicking his 1st goal. Defenseman Matt Irwin hit the Sharks centerman who was positioned at the top of the crease. Pavelski received the pass then spun to his left before putting the Sharks 4th goal of the period past Ray Emery who had replaced Mason after Couture's goal.

* Rather than let up, the Sharks kept the pressure on the Flyers bagging another goal with 2.2 ticks left in the period. Torres Scored yet another goal from the doorstep after Mike Brown tried wrapping the puck around the left post. Brown drew two defenders away from the front of the net but lost the puck, which slid right to Torres for the easy deposit.

* Couture scored his 2nd of the game 4:50 into the 3rd period while San Jose was killing off a hooking penalty to Irwin. Couture tried to feather a pass to Tommy Wingels on an odd-man break, but the pass was deflected. Flyers captain Claude Giroux overskated the puck as it sat to the left of the goal mouth. Emery tried to dive on it, but Couture circled around the back of the net and swatted it between the Flyer goaltender's pads.

* Couture converted on a 3rd goal later in the period, but both Dan O'Halloran and Chris Rooney missed the puck crossing the goal line. Replays showed that Couture jammed the puck into Emery's left leg pad and over the goal line, but it ruled to be inconclusive.

* Matt Read tipped in a Sean Couturier shot with 7 minutes left in the game to cut the sharks leads to 4 goals, but it would be far from enough.

* 5 Sharks finished the game with a +2 plus-minus or better. Vlasic was the only player to finish with a +3 on the night.

* Sharks head coach Todd McLellan was able to roll his lines after amassing their big lead. That will benefit San Jose, who plays in Buffalo on Friday night. Only three Sharks logged more than 20 minutes in ice time.

* Tomas Hertl skated for the first time since suffering his knee injury. There is no clear time table on Hertl's return, but the fact that he's back on skates is a good sign.


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1 2 3 T
SJ 1 5 1 7
PHI 2 0 1 3
1st period - 1, SJ, Torres 1 (Desjardins, Demers), 4:25. 2, PHI, Meszaros 5 (Downie, Read), 10:36. 3, PHI, Schenn 16 (Lecavalier, Simmonds), 10:58.
2nd period - 4, SJ, Pavelski 30 (Marleau, Boyle), 4:23, (pp). 5, SJ, Pavelski 31 (Vlasic), 10:12. 6, SJ, Couture 15 (Marleau, Demers), 10:47. 7, SJ, Pavelski 32 (Irwin, Thornton), 14:10. 8, SJ, Torres 2 (Brown, Desjardins), 19:57.
3rd period - 9, SJ, Couture 16 (Wingels), 4:50, (sh). 10, PHI, Read 16 (Couturier, Grossmann), 12:12.
1st period - Streit, PHI (high sticking), 4:44; Burish, SJ (roughing), 18:24.
2nd period - Boyle, SJ (hooking), 2:07; Raffl, PHI (tripping), 3:48; Hannan, SJ (tripping), 11:19; Hartnell, PHI (delay of game), 11:53.
3rd period - Irwin, SJ (hooking), 4:05; Downie, PHI (tripping), 5:45; Braun, SJ (hooking), 7:30; Hartnell, PHI (slashing), 17:47; Hatnell, PHI (10 min misconduct), 17:47.
Shots Saves
SJ - Stalock 30 27
PHI - Mason 16 12
PHI - Emery 13 10
Shots On Goal
1 2 3 T
SJ 5 16 8 29
PHI 10 8 12 30
Power Play Conversion
SJ 1 of 5
PHI 0 of 5
3 Stars of the Game
Joe Pavelski
Logan Couture
Raffi Torres
Referees: O'Halloran, Rooney. Linesmen: Devorski, Murchison.
Holiday Gifts at BustedTees

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