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Sharks edge Wings in barn burner
Game of the year ends with 6-5 SJ win
1/17/09 - By Mike Lee

In what may arguably be the marquee game of the season in the NHL, the Sharks and Detroit Red Wings squared off in an epic battle at HP Pavilion on Saturday night. 11 different players scored goals in a 6-5 Sharks win. Ryane Clowe had a career high 4 assists for the Sharks who put 41 shots on Detroit netminder Chris Osgood.

Red Wings forward Marion Hossa and Sharks winger Milan Michalek added a goal and 2 assists apiece in the barn burner. Michalek’s goal put San Jose ton top for good midway through the 3rd period, but it took a Patrick Marleau score to seal the deal.

Dan Boyle put the sharks up just 2:59 into the game with a wicked shot from the bottom of the right circle. Clowe setup the goal with a pass from the right corner after he tracked down the puck along the end boards. Boyle whipped a shot that hit Osgood in the left shoulder and found the top of the net.

That lead would last all of a minute when Valteri Filppula put a shot past Evgeni Nabokov. Filppula snapped a shot from the high slot while skating from right to left. Nabokov seemed to lose sight of the shot as it hit his glove, before bouncing past him.

The game turned physical at the 7 minute mark when Clowe leveled Niklas Kronwall behind the Red Wings net, creating a turnover in the Detroit zone. San Jose turned that into gold, when Joe Pavelski buried his 13th goal of the season moments later. Michalek made a blind 30-foot backhand pass through the slot to Pavelski on the left side for the one-timer into the net.

Detroit took advantage of a questionable holding penalty on Douglas Murray early in the 2nd period. Marion Hossa snapped a one-time feed from Pavel Datysuk in the low slot, beating Nabokov for the 2-2 tie.

The Sharks surrendered another goal 3 minutes later when Johan Franzen slipped behind the sharks defense, and tapped in a cross-ice feed from Datsyuk.

Former Shark Mikael Samuelsson took a goaltender interference penalty at 5:27, which was then followed by an Andreas Lilja slashing penalty 31 seconds later. The Red Wings held killed off the first penalty, but Christian Ehrhoff knotted the game at 3-3 2 seconds before Lilja’s penalty was set to expire.

Nabokov stoned Datsyuk on a breakaway with 11 minutes to play in the period.

Henrik Zetterberg gave the Red Wings the lead once again at 15:37 on a scrum in front of the net. The Swedish centerman cut across the low slot with two Sharks draped on him, but got a shot off that found the back of the net.

The Red Wings tried employing a little creativity in their defensive strategy by knocking their own net off the moorings. Osgood got away with it once, but Brett Lebda was set off for delay of game after trying it a second time.

Jonathan Cheechoo would take advantage while on the ensuing power play, by poking home a rebound with 65 ticks left in the period. Marc-Edouard Vlasic threw a shot on net, hitting Clowe in front. With a pile of bodies in front of Osgood, Cheechoo scooped up the loose puck and snapped home his 7th goal of the season.

The period ended with tempers flaring, but the Sharks were assessed the extra roughing minor, putting the Red Wings on the power play. Johan Franzen was assessed one of the roughing minors, but did not return to start the 3rd period, after being injured. The Sharks killed off the penalty, but since Joe Thornton received a double minor, he was unavailable to contribute for the first 4 minutes of the period.

Michalek put the Sharks back on top with 9:42 to play in regulation on a blazing breakaway chance. Dan Boyle found the Sharks finger hovering at center ice, and hit him with a 40 –foot pass. Michalek split two Red Wing defenders, before racing up ice and snapping his 11th goal of the season past Osgood.

Marleau tacked on his 24th goal of the season 3 minutes later on almost a carbon copy of Michalek’s tally. Clowe saw the Sharks captain curl behind the Detroit defense and sprung him with a perfect pass at the Red Wings blueline. Marleau went stick-side to put the Sharks up by 2 goals.

Brian Rafalski made it a nail biter by scoring with 1:56 left in regulation. Zetterberg carred the puck across the high slot, from left to right, before dropping the puck to the Red Wings defenseman. Rafalski snapped a 30-foot shot that tucked just inside the right post.

Detroit turned up the heat, and after pulling Osgood ad the man advantage. Marcel Goc intercepted a pass inside the Red Wing zone, but sent a shot just wide of the empty net. San Jose turned back the attack to preserve their 33rd victory of the season.

Game Notes:

The Sharks added to their injury woes with Rob Blake joining the list of wounded. Blake was scratched after taking one on the chin literally on Thursday night against Calgary . The sharks defenseman is scheduled to return after the All Star break. Cheechoo’s goal was his first tally in 7 games. '

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1 2 3 T
DET 1 3 1 5
SJ 2 2 2 6
1st period - 1, SJ, Boyle 13 (Clowe, Murray) 2:59. 2, DET, Filppula 6 (Hudler, Kronwall), 4:07. 3, SJ, Pavelski 13 (Michalek, Murray), 7:22.
2nd period - 4, DET, Hossa 22 (Datsyuk, Rafalski), 1:34, (pp). 5, DET, Franzen 24 (Datsyuk, Holmstrom), 4:31. 6, SJ, Ehrhoff 3 (Michalek, Clowe), 7:56, (pp). 7, DET, Zetterberg 17 (Cleary, Hossa), 15:37. 8, SJ, Cheechoo 7 (Clowe, Vlasic), 18:55, (pp).
3rd period - 9, SJ, Michalek 11 (Boyle, Ehrhoff), 10:18. 10, SJ, Marleau 24 (Clowe, Cheechoo), 13:24. 11, DET, Rafalski 7 (Zetterberg, Hossa), 18:04.
1st period - Staubitz, SJ (tripping), 11:44.
2nd period - Murray, SJ (holding), 0:41; Samuelsson, DET (goaltender interference), 5:27; Samuelsson, DET (roughing), 5:27; Grier, SJ (roughing), 5:27; Lilja, DET (slashing), 5:58; Lebda, DET (delay of game), 17:32; Franzen, DET (roughing), 20:00; Rafalski, DET (roughing), 20:00; Vlassic, SJ (roughing), 20:00; Thornton, SJ (roughing), 20:00; Thornton, SJ (roughing), 20:00.
3rd period - None.
Shots Saves
DET - Osgood 41 35
SJ - Nabokov 34 29
Shots On Goal
1 2 3 T
DET 11 12 11 34
SJ 13 21 7 41
Power Play Conversion
DET 1 of 3
SJ 2 of 3
3 Stars of the Game
Ryane Clowe
Milan Michalek
Dan Boyle
Referees: Fraser, McCreary. Linesmen: Cormier, Wheler.

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