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Sharks shelled on Veteran's Day
San Jose endures second straight thumping
11/11/14 - By Mike Lee -

South Florida is where old people, devoid of energy and life, go to retire. The Sharks got in on that act on Tuesday night, checking their dentures at the door and turning in early in a lethargic 4-1 loss to the host Florida Panthers at BB&T Center. The only thing missing from this game was craft hour and pudding for dessert. The Sharks coasted for 60 minutes and ended up getting beat by a bad hockey team in a mausoleum that held a tick over 8,000 paying customers.

After getting pounded in Chicago two nights earlier, the Sharks needed to turn things out with an up tempo performance. They played exactly the opposite. Defensive lapses and players caught out of position resulted in 4 Panther goals before the Sharks even registered a pulse in this game.

San Jose didn't register a shot on Panthers goaltender Roberto Luongo until the 4:07 mark of the opening period. Of the 5 shots registered in the period by San Jose, not a single one was taken inside of 20 feet. San Jose took three shots inside 20 feet the whole night, and one of those was Joe Thornton swatting a deflection out of the air. Thornton's shot was the only one taken inside of 15 feet the entire game.

Luongo just sat back and gloved the long range attempts that had little chance of ever finding twine.

Antti Niemi wasn't so lucky.

The Panthers no-name offense put 10 shots on goal in each of the three periods and converted in each 20 minute segment. Florida put a pair of 1st period goals that provided the Panthers with all the offense they would need.

Jimmy Hayes scored the 1st goal of the game 10:56 into the opening period, after Brent Burns turned the puck over deep in his own end. Jussi Jokinen picked Burns pocket in the left corner before sliding the puck over to Vincent Trocheck at the bottom of the left circle. Rathern than shooting, Trocheck saw Hayes cutting in from the right side, so he slid the puck across the slot for the easy deposit.

Aleksander Barkov put Florida up 2-0 less than 2 minutes later, flipping a Scottie Upshall drop pass past Niemi. Niemi was tracking Upshall, who circled behind the Sharks net. Shifting his focus from one post to the other, Niemi didn't see Upshall's backhand drop to Barkov for the shot into an exposed net.

A late penalty to Erik Gudbranson put the Sharks on the first of their two power plays, but San Jose couldn't muster any serious scoring chance.

Derek MacKenzie made it 3-0 6:37 into the 2nd period, depositing a rebound after Aaron Ekblad bounced a shot off Niemi from the right point. MacKenzie was loitering in the slot unattended when the puck deflected right to his stick for the quick put back.

The Sharks were well out of the contest by that point, but even the hockey gods were frowning down on them. Matt Irwin ripped a shot later in the period that beat Luongo, but clanked off the cross bar. Burns ripped a shot with 4 seconds left in the period that slipped between Luongo's pads but it changed direction and again bounced off the post.

Tomas Fleischmann put the icing on the cake for Florida, scoring an inexcusable goal 3 minutes into the 3rd period. Fleischmann out-muscled Adam Burish for position at the top of the Sharks crease, tapping home a Shawn Thornton feed from the doorstep. The lack of attention paid to Fleischmann was indicative of the Sharks defensive woes. Little details continue to bite them.

Thornton scored his goal with 9:25 to play, swatting home a Burns shot that hit Luongo and bounced over his right shoulder. Thornton was in foreign territory, cutting across the slot when Burns shot evaded Luongo.



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Scoring
1 2 3 T
SJ 0 0 1 1
FLA 2 1 1 4
1st period - 1, FLA, Hayes 2 (Trocheck, Jokinen), 10:56. 2, FLA, Barkov 2 (Upshall, Kopecky), 12:18.
2nd period - 3, FLA, Mackenzie 2 (Ekblad), 6:37.
3rd period - 4, FLA, Fleischmann 1 (Thornton), 3:01. 5, SJ, Thornton 5 (Burns), 10:35.
Penalties
1st period - Gudbranson, FLA (holding), 19:05.
2nd period - Ekblad, FLA (hooking), 9:45; Hertl, SJ (roughing), 13:29.
3rd period - Burish, SJ (closing hand on puck), 5:11.
Goaltending
Shots Saves
SJ - Niemi 30 26
FLA - Luongo 22 21
Shots On Goal
1 2 3 T
SJ 5 7 10 22
FLA 10 10 10 30
Power Play Conversion
SJ 0 of 2
FLA 0 of 2
3 Stars of the Game
Aleksander Barkov
Derek Mackenzie
Roberto Luongo
Attendence
8,075
Officials
Referees: L'Ecuyer, Martell. Linesmen: Kovachik, Nowak.
Holiday Gifts at BustedTees

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