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Sharks out-muscle Kings
San Jose takes regular season series finale
4/3/14 - By Mike Lee -

The Sharks turned the tables on their biggest rivals on Thursday night, knocking off the Los Angeles Kings 2-1 before a raucous SAP Center Crowd. Rather than trying to finesse the Kings, San Jose took a more physical approach to beating their nemesis to the south. The Sharks were credited with 52 hits in the game, shifting the Kings focus for much of the game. Brent Burns and Logan Couture supplied the Sharks with all the offense they would need, potting a pair of goals in the 2nd period to pace San Jose.

* It was a nice change of pace, seeing the usually passive Sharks playing more of a rough and tumble style of play. San Jose was credited with 52 hits on the Kings. Tommy Wingels led all players with 10 hits, but San Jose also received big numbers from unlikely culprits. Patrick Marleau, James Seppard and Joe Thornton all added 6 hits apiece.

* The Kings jumped on the Sharks early in the contest, buzzing goaltender Antti Niemi with a steady dose of shots. Los Angeles created plenty of distractions in front of Niemi, but used a good old fashioned deflection ti get on the board.

* Jordan Nolan scored the Kings only goal of the evening 3:36 into the contest, tipping an Alec Martinez shot past Niemi. Jarret Stoll appeared to be the King to deflect Martinez' shot, but the official scorekeeper awarded the goal to Nolan.

* The Sharks had a chance to tie the game in the first period when Martin Havlat found himself with a clear path to the Kings net, but his breakaway shot sailed wide of the Kings goal.

* Dustin Brown felt the need to retaliate on an Andrew Desjardins hit, by mugging Desjardins in front of referee Dan O'Rourke. San Jose wasted little time on the power play, when Brent Burns ripped a slap shot from the left point that beat Kings goaltender Martin Jones. Joe Pavelski created a distraction in front of Jones by parking himself at the lip of the crease.

* Logan Couture scored what would turn out to be the game-winning goal at 12:13 of the middle frame. Tommy Wingels fired a shot on net from the right wing boards that Jones stoped. Patrick Marleau tried stuffing the rebound past Jones, but the puck slid off the goaltender's left pad out behind the Kings goal. Couture swopped in from the right side, then wrapped the puck around the left post with his backhand for his 21st goal of the season.

* Jeff Carter missed a breakaway chance with 6:50 to play in the 2nd period, when Niemi came out of his net and stuffed a 20-foot shot.

* Couture had a chance form the doorstep 4 minutes into the 3rd period, lifting a shot just wide of the Kings net. * Thornton and Slava Voynoz mixed it up a minute later to earn the pair trips to the penalty box. The off-setting penalties provided no advantage to either team, but it was indicative of the grumpiness in the building. Jason Demers and Stoll mixed it up later in the game.

* The Sharks continued to lay the body in the 3rd period, taking the Kings off their game. Los Angeles generated a paltry 8 shots on goal in the 3rd period, but couldn't get the equalizing goal past Niemi.

* Kings defenseman Drew Doughty was injured in the first period, trying to lay a hit on Andrew Desjardins. Doughty keeled over in discomfort and left the ice for the remainder of the evening.

Game Quotes:

Head Coach Todd McLellan: "It was an overall better effort. Better defensively. Not as sloppy. The intensity and the attention to detail was much better than it was against Edmonton. The opponent, the environment, what's on the line, it brought out the best in us."

Joe Thornton: "I wanted to hit something tonight, that's all. That was the game place. We're starting to ramp up our game a little bit. That was the case tonight. We might see these guys in 12 days or so. So it's just play hard and see what happens."

Logan Couture: "We expected a tough, hard game in our building with our fans, which we knew would be into it. That's probably the best we've played in a while. The most physical we have played in a while. They are a good team over there, but I thought tonight we were more physical. We played pretty well."

Head Coach Darryl Sutter: "I thought we played real well, the challenges is that they're a really good hockey club." Jake Muzzin: "This is a tough building to come into and play, we stayed calm. I thought we did a pretty good job getting pucks in. I'd like to see a little more pucks on net, a little more commotion around their net, like they did to us. For the most part, our breakouts were pretty good, if we clean those up a little more, spend more time in their zone we'd get more scoring chances."

Dustin Brown (on loss of Doughty): "He's obviously one of our best players and we have got to pick up the slack. There's not one guy that can replace him and we go from there."


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1 2 3 T
LA 1 0 0 1
SJ 0 2 0 2
1st period - 1, LA, Nolan 6 (Martinez, Brown), 3:36.
2nd period - 2, SJ, Burns 23 (Boyle, Thornton), 7:15, (pp). 3, SJ, Couture 21 (Marleau, Wingels), 12:13.
3rd period - None.
1st period - Burns, SJ (cross checking), 4:04; Kopitar, LA (hooking), 5:09; Demers, SJ (tripping), 18:21.
2nd period - Boyle, SJ (holding), 3:26; Brown, LA (roughing), 7:11; Voynov, LA (roughing), 12:59; Thornton, SJ (cross checking), 12:59; Kennedy, SJ (tripping), 15:44.
3rd period - Nieto, SJ (hooking), 6:27; Stoll, LA (roughing), 8:29; Demers, SJ (roughing), 8:29.
Shots Saves
LA - Jones 21 19
SJ - Niemi 27 26
Shots On Goal
1 2 3 T
LA 10 9 8 27
SJ 5 10 6 21
Power Play Conversion
LA 0 of 5
SJ 1 of 2
3 Stars of the Game
Joe Thornton
Logan Couture
Patrick Marleau
Referees: O'Rourke, Rehman. Linesmen: Cameron, Wheler.
Holiday Gifts at BustedTees

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