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Sharks roll craps in loss to Vegas
SJ drops first game in Vegas 5-4
11/24/17 - By Mike Lee -

Twenty-six years ago the Sharks were a struggling expansion team that lost much more than they lost. They played like an expansion team in the first 30 minutes of their first visit to Vegas to take on the Golden Knights at T-Mobile Center. That dismal play put them in a 4-1 hole against the expansion knights. They would battle back to time the game, and appeared to take the lead with a 3rd period goal, but a suspect ruling stole that goal away. the Knights would take advantage of a series of lucky events in overtime to beat the Sharks 5-4.

Vegas' puck luck aside, the Sharks had no business allowing an expansion team scoring 5 goals on them. The opening half of the game was a circus for the Sharks. No flow, no coordination and seemingly no game plan. They appeared to be overmatched by a faster team that seems to be a common theme night after night.

The Knights opened the game's scoring 2:33 into the contest when defenseman Shea Theodore picked up a deflection as he was activating from the right point. The defenseman skated to the right dot before sending a long shot past Martin Jones. The shot beat Jones just inside the right post, finding a crack between Jones and iron.

Justin Braun setup a Knights power play goal 9 minutes later after he hooked Brendan Leipsic. James Neal found a seam between Jones and the left post after Erik Haula deflected a pass over to the veteran forward on the left side. As was the case on the first goal, Jones failed to seal off the near side. The goal was Neal's 12th of the season.

Tomas Hertl halved the deficit with just under 3 minutes remaining in the period, when he cut down the slot and took a blind feed from Joonas Donskoi and whipped a shot past Knights goaltender Maxime Legace. Donskoi was parked outside the left post and had his back to the goal, but he caught Hertl skating in toward the slot. The winger sent a backhand feed between Theodore's skates to Hertl.

Joe Pavelski's idea of leadership was to take a boneheaded slashing penalty late in the period, which carried over to the 2nd period. San Jose's penalty kill was as ill-prepared on their second penalty kill as the first. William Karlsson deposited his 11th goal of the season 10 seconds into the period to push the Knights lead back to a 2-goal margin.

Jones was immediately pulled in favor of Aaron Dell.

Karlsson made it a 4-1 Knights lead when he converted at 6:55 of the period.

Brent Burns finally made an appearance on the stat sheet, scoring his 1st goal of the season 1:13 later. The Sharks defenseman rifled a shot from the right point that Legace either never picked up or was screened.

Christ Tierney made it a one-goal lead at 15:34, tapping home a long pass from Justin Braun from the right point. Tierney was lurking outside the left post, and when Braun sent his 80 foot pass to the left post, the Sharks forward slipped underneath Legace for the tap in.

Mikkel Boedker tied the game with 50 seconds left in the period, after Cody Eakin was sent off for interference. The Sharks forward was fighting off a defender in the high slot when a Brent Burns pass found its way to Boedker's stick. Boedker whipped a shot past Legace for his 3rd goal of the season.

San Jose appeared to take the lead early in the 3rd period when Logan Couture whipped a shot past Malcolm Subban, who replaced Legace to start the period. Couture sent the puck into a wide open net from the left side, but Vegas challenged the score for goaltender interference. The goal would be overturned, negating a 4th San Jose score in the last week.

Tomas Hertl was called for a baffling interference penalty. after Jonathan Marchessault essentially threw him to the ice. The Knights power play carried over into the overtime period, but it would not factor into the game.

A broken stick in overtime would factor in the decision. It was a perfect storm in the last few seconds of the game. Burns broke his stick with the puck in the Sharks zone and he elected to retrieve a stick on his bench, which allowed Marchessault to line up a shot from the left side. That shot hit Joe Thornton in the skate a deflected into the net for the sudden death goal.

Game Notes:

* Timo Meier's interference penalty came as a result of him running into David Perron. The contact appeared to be inadvertent as Meier was looking away from the Knights forward. Perron crumpled to the ice and did not return for the remainder of the game. Perron suffered a concussion as a result of a Joe Thornton hit three seasons ago.

* The Sharks lost just about every statistical category, including shots, missed shots, hits, blocked shots and face off wins.

* The game marked Brent Burns 900th careen NHL contest.





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Scoring
1 2 3 OT T
SJ 1 3 0 0 4
VGK 2 2 0 1 5
1st period - 1, VGK, Theodore 1 (Eakin, Leipsic), 2:33. 2, VGK, Neal 12 (Haula, Marchessault), 11:16, (pp). 3, SJ, Hertl 4 (Donskoi, Vlasic), 17:08.
2nd period - 4, VGK, Karlsson 11 (Tuch, Smith), 0:10, (pp). 5, VGK, Karlsson 12 (Marchessault), 6:55. 6, SJ, Burns 1 (Thornton), 8:08. 7, SJ, Tierney 5 (Braun, Ward), 15:34. 8, SJ, Boedker 3 (Pavelski, Thornton), 19:10, (pp).
3rd period - None.
Overtime - 9, VGK, Marchessault 7 (Thoedore, Neal), 1:21.
Penalties
1st period - Braun, SJ (hooking), 10:15; Pavelski, SJ (slashing), 18:43.
2nd period - Meier, SJ (interfernee), 0:59; Smith, VGK (hooking), 12:53; Eakin, VGK (interference), 17:46.
3rd period - Hertl, SJ (interference), 18:07.
Overtime - None.
Goaltending
Shots Saves
SJ - Jones 14 11
SJ - Dell 19 17
VGK - Legace 23 19
VGK - Subban 3 3
Shots On Goal
1 2 3 OT T
SJ 8 15 3 0 26
VGK 12 10 9 2 33
Power Play Conversion
SJ 1 of 2
VGK 2 of 4
3 Stars of the Game
William Karlsson
Shea Theodore
Jonathan Marchessault
Attendance
T-Mobile Arena - 18,094
Officials
Referees: Brenk, Jackson. Linesmen: Barton, Cherrey.
Holiday Gifts at BustedTees

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