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Economical Sharks win 4th straight
Melker Karlsson bags overtime winner
11/19/15 - By Mike Lee -

The Sharks may never want to come home again. After struggling for much of the evening, San Jose leaned on a Swede and a rookie Fin to pull out a 1-0 victory in overtime, as the host Philadelphia Flyers fell to the streaking Sharks. Melker Karlsson was the man of the hour as his overtime winner gave the Sharks their 4th win on their current 6-game road trip.

The victory was the Sharks 5th in a row on the road, but it gets team leaning in the right direction. San Jose struggled to get their offense kicked into gear after generating a paltry 9 shots on goal over the final 40 minutes of regulation.

San Jose looked as if they might extend the goal-fest they started in Boston on Tuesday night, when an errant puck turned into a crazy scoring chance just 10 seconds into the game. As the Sharks cycled a puck around the Flyers end boards, Philadelphia goaltender Chris Mason skated behind his net to try and play the puck. That puck hit something along the boards and caromed back out to the front of the goal. Joe Pavelski was there to push a shot on net, but defenseman Luke Schenn threw himself in front of the shot to deny the Sharks captain.

The Sharks were offensively challenged for all of the last shot of the game from that point forward. They generated a paltry 5 shots in the 2nd period, and only 4 in the 3rd.

Goaltender Martin Jones had a consistent workload throughout the evening, stopping 34 shots for his 3rd shutout of the season. 5 of those shots came on Flyers power play chances.

The Sharks held the advantage in power play time, inducing 4 chances with the man advantage. The most notable was a Wayne Simmonds tripping call with 19 seconds left in regulation. The power play carried over to the overtime session, which is now being played under the league's new 3-on-3 format. Because no team can skate with less than 3 players, the Sharks were allowed to add a skater while Simmonds served the final 1:41 in the extra frame.

The Sharks didn't convert on any of their power play chances, but the one in overtime was the toughest pill to swallow. Joe Thornton seemed convinced that he could open up a hole in the Flyers defense by standing near the right dot and stick handle with the puck. All that ended up doing was kill clock. The Flyers would eventually kill off that crucial penalty, but they couldn't stop Karlsson.

Karlsson's game winning goal started when the Flyers tried pressing in the Sharks zone with the three players they had on the ice. Paul Martin dug the puck out of the right corner then hit Joonas Donskoi with a lead pass as the rookie winger skated up the left wing. Defenseman Michael Dal Zotto sprinted back to split Donskoi and Karlsson, but he was forced to drop to the ice to try and stop a pass through the slot.

Donskoi lifted a saucer pass over Dal Zotto's stick, hitting Karlsson perfectly in stride. Karlsson made a pretty play even prettier when he received the pass on the fly and lifted a shot over Mason's left shoulder to send the 18,229 in attendance packing.

The Sharks will be put to the test this weekend when they travel to Pittsburgh on Saturday to take on the Penguins, who are 7-3-0 in their last 10 games. The Sharks then turnaround to play the Columbus Blue Jackets on Sunday to cap their 6-game trip. The back to back games are a grueling way to end a lengthy trip that has helped right the Sharks struggles.

The schedule makers weren't exactly in a giving mood when they set up the current trip.


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1 2 3 OT T
SJ 0 0 0 1 1
PHI 0 0 0 0 0
1st period - None.
2nd period - None.
3rd period - None.
Overtime - 1, SJ, Karlsson 3 (Donskoi, Martin), 3:45.
1st period - None.
2nd period - Gudas, PHI (slashing), 7:41; Ward, SJ (tripping), 10:05.
3rd period - Simmonds, PHI (hooking), 3:08; Schultz, PHI (closing hand on puck), 10:40; Thornton, SJ (tripping), 12:06; Simmonds, PHI (tripping), 19:41.
Overtime - None.
Shots Saves
SJ - Jones 34 34
PHI - Mason 21 20
Shots On Goal
1 2 3 OT T
SJ 10 5 4 2 21
PHI 6 15 9 4 34
Power Play Conversion
SJ 0 of 4
PHI 0 of 2
3 Stars of the Game
Martin Jones
Melker Karlsson
Brent Burns
Referees: Pochmara, Martell. Linesmen: Cherrey, Murray.
Holiday Gifts at BustedTees

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