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WCF Game3: Sharks win wild one in OT
Controversial non-call mars final goal
5/15/19 - By Mike Lee -

There are hockey games, and there are hockey games that you'll remember for a long time. The Sharks Western Conference Finals series with the St Louis Blues shifted to Missouri on Wednesday, and it turned out to be a memorable one. San Jose jumped out to a big lead, imploded in the 2nd period to give up four goals, then tied the game in the final minute of regulation. All of that was ancillary to the ending in overtime, which was capped by a controversial non-call on an apparent hand pass before Erik Karlsson banged home the game-winning goal. In the end, San Jose skated away with a 5-4 victory.

The play everyone will be talking about for a while involved Timo Meier and a swatting motion he made with his glove that appeared to push the puck toward the slot. Gus Nyquist collected the puck at that point before sliding it to his left where Karlsson was there to bang a shot that hit Jordan Binnington before floating over the goal line.

The Sharks celebrated on the ice, while the Blues barked at referees Marc Joannette and Dan O'Rourke to call the hand pass. Both referees conferred with linesmen Johny Murray and Matt MacPherson. None of the officials saw the hand pass, and could not turn to replay, because a hand pass is a non-reviewable infraction.

Binnington and Brayden Schenn pursued the officials as they skated toward the official exit, slamming their sticks on the glass in frustration.

The officials exit from the ice was an anti-climactic ending to a dramatic finish. That's playoff overtime hockey.

The lead-up to the dramatic finish was a story in itself.

The two teams used the first 15 minutes of the contest to feel each other out, before San Jose cracked the score sheet open. Erik Karlsson grabbed a Blues turnover along the right wing boards, then whipped shot on goal from the top of the right circle. The puck sailed over Jordan Binnington's left shoulder for Karlsson's 1st goal of the playoffs. The Blues goaltender never reacted to the shot, which wasn't screened.

Micheal Haley started the scoring sequence with a big hit behind the Blues net, which created the turnover that led to Karlsson's goal. Haley was reinserted into the Sharks lineup after the Sharks 3rd line struggled in Game 2.

Joe Thornton got in the scoring act at 16:58 of the period when a Marc-Edouard Vlasic shot was stopped by Binnington, but the rebound landed right on the centerman's stick as he was cutting across the top of the crease. Thornton grabbed the rebound and lifted a backhand chance into the wide open net for his 3rd goal of the playoffs.

The period was all San Jose, but they rested on their laurels in the next frame, and it tuned into a bona fide disaster.

The Blues came out of the 1st intermission dressing room on a mission to score. they accomplished that when Alexander Steen converted on a 2-on-2 rush. Ivan Barbashev carried the puck up the middle of the ice with Karlsson in his face. The Blues winger slid a pass over to Steen on the right side for a 25-foot shot that beat Martin Jones.

Thornton responded 18 second later, when he collected a Kevin Labanc feed from outside the right post before snapping a shot that beat Binnington.

The Blues refused to go away, using a Vladimir Tarasenko goal from the left dot to pull back to within a goal. Tarasenko raced up the left wing and uncorked the shot even though he had Brendan Dillon on his hip. Dillon failed to tie up Tarasenko's stick or get a blade in front of the shot.

The momentum could have shifted, had a clear delay of game penalty been called on the Blues, but somehow all four on-ice officials missed a blatant puck over glass with 8 minutes left in the period.

St Louis also escaped penalty when Sammy Blais caught Justin Braun with an elbow that sent the Sharks defenseman to the ice in a daze.

David Perron tied the game with 3:57 left in the period after the Blues moved the puck around the Sharks zone like they were on a power play. Perron sat on the left dot and simply ripped a shot that tucked inside Jones and the left post. It was tough to give up the late one, but the period would only get worse for San Jose.

Brent Burns was sent off for hooking less than a minute after Perron's goal. The Blues forward took another shot from almost the same spot with 78 seconds left in the period, beating Jones for a second time. Sharks defenseman Justin Braun sat in between Perron and the Sharks goal, but the shot clipped him, changing directions on Jones.

Starting the 3rd period, San Jose should have been the team playing for their lives, but the Blues generated all the scoring chances by maintaining a vicious forecheck.

Jones kept his team in the game with a series of massive saves, including a point blank save on Schenn midway through the period.

It wasn't until the last 90 seconds of the period that San Jose finally squared up the game. Couture parked himself in the crease and jammed it past Binnington. Joe Pavelski tried jamming a shot past the Blues netminder from the left side, but Binnington couldn't corral the shot.

Both teams generated three shots in the brief overtime period, but it was Karlsson's that matttered.

Game Notes:

* Blues defenseman Vince Dunn took a puck to the face after a direct Brendan Dillon shot caught him in the left cheek in the 2nd period. Dunn skated off with a mouth full of blood and did not return.

* Joe Thornton's goal was his 40th career playoff tally. Those came in 176 career playoff games. He became the 11th player in NHL history to record three points in a playoff game at age 39 or higher. He is also the 9th oldest player to record two goals in a playoff game.

* Erik Karlsson became only the 2nd Sharks defenseman to score an overtime goal in the playoffs. Andrei Zyuzin beat the Dallas Stars in OT in 1998 during a quarter-finals match up.

* The two goals by Karlsson marked the first time he registered two tallies in an overtime game.

* Kevin Labanc recorded his 4th and 5th assists of the playoffs.

* St Louis out-hit the Sharks 43-21. While it didn't appear the Blues were laying the body as they were in Game 1, the numbers suggest otherwise.

* Neither Sharks head coach Peter DeBoer or Blues head coach Craig Berube cared to discuss the hand pass after the game. Berube was obviously more testy when asked if he thought the play was a hand pass. "What do you think it was?" he responded.



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Scoring
1 2 3 OT T
SJ 2 1 1 1 5
STL 0 4 0 0 4
1st period - 1, SJ, E. Karlsson 1 (unassisted), 13:37. 2, SJ, Thornton 3 (Vlasic, Labanc), 16:58.
2nd period - 3, STL, Steen 2 (Barbashev), 1:18. 4, SJ, Thornton 4 (Labanc, Dillon), 1:36. 5, STL, Tarasenko 6 (Schenn, Paraykok), 4:05. 6, STL, Perron 4 (Parayko, Edmundson), 16:03. 7, STL, Perron 5 (Maroon, Parayko), 18:42, (pp).
3rd period - 8, SJ, Couture 14 (Pavelski, Thornton), 18:59.
Overtime - 9, SJ, E. Karlsson 2 (Nyquist, Meier), 5:23.
Penalties
1st period - Perron, STL (tripping), 6:58.
2nd period - Burns, SJ (hooking), 17:42.
3rd period - None.
Overtime - None.
Goaltending
Shots Saves
SJ - Jones 32 28
STL - Binnington 32 27
Shots On Goal
1 2 3 OT T
SJ 9 8 12 3 32
STL 4 13 12 3 32
Power Play Conversion
SJ 0 of 1
STL 1 of 1
3 Stars of the Game
Erik Karlsson
David Perron
Joe Thornton
Attendance
Enterprise Center - 18,360
Officials
Referees: Joannette, O'Rourke. Linesmen: Murray, MacPherson.
Holiday Gifts at BustedTees

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