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Sharks rip Blackhawks with a 7 spot
Pavelski leads SJ in rout of Chicago
3/1/18 - By Mike Lee -

The Sharks missed out on a chance to beat a struggling Chicago Blackhawks team six days ago in the Windy City. They wouldn't make the same mistake Thursday night. The Sharks erupted for 7 goals to dispatch the Blackhawks 7-2 at SAP Center. Joe Pavelski scored a pair of goals to lead San Jose, who won for the fourth time in a row on home ice. Martin Jones made 32 saves to earn his 21st win of the season.

The suddenly potent Sharks offense followed up their five goal output against the Edmonton Oilers on Tuesday with a 7 spot that raised their per game goal scoring average to 5.25 goals over their last four games on SAP Center ice.

While he didn't record a point in the game, the presence of Evander Kane has fueled Pavelski's game. The Sharks captain suddenly finds himself leading the team in scoring with 52 points, surpassing defenseman Brent Burns.

Artem Anisimov staked the Blackhawks to an early 1-0 lead with a shot from the right dot that eluded goaltender Martin Jones high to the stick side. The Blackhawks forward received a Duncan Keith feed as he circled through the slot, using a Marc Edouard Vlasic screen to keep Jones from seeing the release.

Joe Pavelski tied the game ten minutes later, one-timing a Brent Burns feed from the bottom of the left circle. Pavelski's shot hit Blackhawks goaltender J.F. Berube before deflecting to the top of the net for his 17th goal of the season.

Logan Couture made it a 2-1 Sharks lead less than two minutes later when the Sharks pushed the puck down low, then converted when Mikkel Boedker setup a shot from the to of the crease with a feed from the right corner. Couture saw Boedker setup and drove right down the slot before converting the pass for his 27th goal of the season.

Kevin Labanc created a little breathing room for the Sharks when he slammed home his 8th goal of the season after Berube got caught out of his net. The Sharks moved the puck well deep in the zone and when Dylan Demelo pinched, Berube was forced to cut off an angle by floating out of the crease. Chris Tierney moved the puck to Labanc in the slot for the easy deposit.

Timo Meier recorded his 17th goal of the season three minutes later after he tipped a Brendan Dillon shot while skating between the circles. His stick changed the trajectory of the Dillon blast, slipping under Berube for the three goal lead.

Pavelski added his second goal of the evening at 12:14 of the period tapping home a Joonas Donskoi feed from the right side after the duo raced up ice on a 2-on-1.

Marc-Edouard Vlasic got in on the act with 1.2 seconds left in the period by banking a shot off Berube's right leg with a shot from below the end line on the left side. The goal was Vlasic's 10th of the season, which is a career high for the Sharks defenseman. Berube would play out the final second of the period, but his night was done. Anton Forsberg replaced him in net to start the 3rd period.

Forsberg didn't fare much better. His own defense put a puck past him 2:32 into the 3rd period, when Barclay Goodrow tried to center a puck to the front of the net and his linemate Melker Karlsson, but Blackhawks defenseman Duncan Keith tried to sweep it away from his goal mouth and ended up pushing it past Forsberg for a 7-1 Sharks lead.

The Blackhawks bookend the sharks touchdown with a nick Schmaltz goal with 32 seconds left in the game. Schmaltz one timed an Alex Debrincat feed from the slot for his 18th goal of the season.

Game Notes:

* Anthony Duclair was awarded a penalty shot late in the 3rd period after Brent Burns was forced to haul him down after he slipped past the Sharks defenseman. It didn't hurt the Sharks in the end as Duclair fumbled the puck as he skated in on the penalty shot and pushed a chance wide left.

* The 7 goals were the most the Sharks have scored in a game since January of 2016, when they beat the Toronto Maple Leafs 7-0 at SAP Center.

* Mattthew Highmore made his NHL debut for the Blackhawks.





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Scoring
1 2 3 T
CHI 1 0 1 1
SJ 2 4 1 7
1st period - 1, CHI, Anisimov 18 (Keith, Kane), 2:12. 2, SJ, Pavelski 17 (Burns, Donskoi), 10:22. 3, SJ, Couture 27 (Boedker, Hertl), 14:14.
2nd period - 4, SJ. Labanc 8 (Tierney, Demelo), 2:13. 5, SJ, Meier 17 (Dillon, Demelo), 5:21. 6, SJ, Pavelski 18 (Donskoi, Kane), 12:14. 7, SJ, Vlasic 10 (unassisted), 19:58.
3rd period - 8, SJ, Goodrow 6 (Sorensen, Demelo), 2:32. Duclair, CHI (missed penalty shot), 14:51. 9, CHI, Schmaltz 18 (Debrincat, Dahlstrom), 19:27.
Penalties
1st period - None.
2nd period - Keith, CHI (elbowing), 17:58.
3rd period - Demelo, SJ (interference), 9:05.
Goaltending
Shots Saves
CHI - Berube 28 22
CHI - empty net 6 5
SJ - Jones 34 43
Shots On Goal
1 2 3 T
CHI 8 11 15 34
SJ 9 19 6 34
Power Play Conversion
CHI 0 of 1
SJ 0 of 1
3 Stars of the Game
Dylan Demelo
Joe Pavelski
Brendan Dillon
Attendance
SAP Center - 17,086
Officials
Referees: Furlatt, Pochmara. Linesmen: Daisy, Shewchyk.
Holiday Gifts at BustedTees

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