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A loss is a loss, regardless of why
Plenty of blame to go around in 3-2 OT loss in St Louis
2/18/21 - By Mike Lee -

Good teams find ways to win. Bad teams find ways to lose. The 2020-21 version of the San Jose Sharks isn't making any run for the Stanley cup this year, but they found a way to cough up a win against a better team. The Sharks were 40 seconds from their 3rd win in regulation, before surrendering a tying goal to the Blues. A terrible call in the overtime handed the Blues the win, when David Perron scored a power play goal to help St Louis steal the two points with a 3-2 win.

Blame it on the failure to execute or blame it on poor officiating, but it still amounts to a loss. The Sharks aren't good enough to give away points, especially in a season that offers up the unusual format of divisional play only.

Brent Burns had a chance to clear a puck late with the Sharks clinging to a 2-1 lead, but poor execution allowed the Blues to keep the puck pinned in the offensive zone, then Brayden Schenn punches home the equalizer. It was the kind of play that confirmed everything the naysayers have been criticizing San Jose for. Poor execution. Lose game.

The officiating was simply atrocious.

The Blues took advantage of an interference penalty to Burns, when Mike Hoffman slammed home a deflection from the right post at 6:12 of the opening period. Burns was called for hauling down Perron, who dressed up the play with a weak attempt to stay upright. Perron would earn the secondary assist when his pass found its way to Oskar Sundqvist who tried jamming the puck home from in tight on the left side. The rebound slid over to Hoffman, who had nothing but open net to shoot at.

Blues goaltender Jordan Binnington held the fort for St Louis in that opening period, making a big save off a John Leonard redirect with 6 minutes left in the period. He would follow that up with a big save on Burns with 3:40 left in the frame.

The Sharks tied the game at 8:27 of the 2nd period, when Noah Gregor fired home a big rebound from the left side after Nicolas Meloche bounced a shot off Binnington. Meloche ripped his chance from the top of the right circle splitting Dylan Gambrell's skates. Binnington got a leg pad down, but the puck shot over to the bottom of the left circle where Gregor lifted a shot for his 3rd goal of the season.

San Jose grabbed the lead 6 minutes later when John Leonard bagged his 2nd tally of the year. Ryan Donato tried skating the puck toward the net in traffic, and improvised with a backhand spin-o-ramma chance that turned into a pass that found Leonard on the right post. Leonard pulled the puck back on his forehand before sliding the puck under Binnington's pads for the 2-1 lead.

Evander Kane had a chance to pad the Sharks lead in the final minute of the period when he found himself on a breakaway, but the forward put his shot over Binnington.

The Sharks went toe to toe with St Louis for 19 minutes in the 3rd period, but were forced to kill a big penalty late in the game when Timo Meier was called for a phantom tripping call.

They would kill the penalty, but it took some gas to get it done. That likely allowed for the Burns gaff, which led to the Schenn goal.

The officiating really cost San Jose in the overtime when Patrick Marleau was called for hooking, on a standard play where a defender is lifting an opposing players stick. It was simply a blown call.

That enabled the Blues to convert when Perron whipped a one-time chance between Jones' pads to end it.

Game Notes:

* Defensemen Frederik Claeson and Nicolas Meloche made their second consecutive starts with both Erik Karlsson and Radim Simek on the shelf. Both defensemen played well, recording +2 nights. Claeson recorded a shot on goal and a pair of hits.

* Erik Karlsson did not travel with the Sharks, as he nurses his gimpy groin. Radim Simek did travel with the Sharks, who play in St Louis again on Saturday afternoon.

* Martin Jones turned into another good performance, but wasn't rewarded for his play. the Sharks netminder made 40 saves, including 7 in the overtime period.

* Logan Couture was injured in the 2nd period, requiring some attention in the dressing room, but he would return. The Sharks captain recorded 4 shots on goal, but he never challenged Binnington. The Sharks rely on their big money guys, and Couture just didn't deliver on Thursday night.

* So much for calling games more loosely in the 3rd period of tight games. Even more so for games in overtime. This one may have been more about rewarding the team that is supposed to win and penalizing the team that was supposed to lose.





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Scoring
1 2 3 OT T
SJ 0 2 0 0 2
STL 1 0 1 1 3
1st period - 1, STL, Hoffman 6 (Sundqvist, Perron), 6:12, (pp).
2nd period - 2, SJ, Gregor 3 (Meloche, Gambrell), 8:27. 3, SJ, Leonard 2 (Donato, Marleau), 14:31.
3rd period - 4, STL, Schenn 8 (Hoffman), 19:20.
Overtime - 5, STL, Perron 6 (Krug), 4:00, (pp).
Penalties
1st period - Dunn, STL (high sticking), 0:57; Burns, SJ (interference), 5:00; Donato, SJ (high sticking), 19:56.
2nd period - None.
3rd period - Meier, SJ (tripping), 15:14.
Overtime - Marleau, SJ (hooking), 3:21.
Goaltending
Shots Saves
SJ - Jones 43 40
STL - Binnington 32 30
Shots On Goal
1 2 3 OT T
SJ 10 11 9 1 32
STL 13 6 15 8 43
Power Play Conversion
SJ 0 of 1
STL 2 of 4
3 Stars of the Game
David Perron
Mike Hoffman
Jordan Binnington
Attendance
Enterprise Center - no attendance
Officials
Referees: Peel, Lee. Linesmen: Fournier, Daisy.





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