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3rd period letdown leaves Sharks in a hole
Vancouver takes Game 2 with 7-3 rout
5/18/11 - By Mike Lee -

The 3rd period continues to be a house of horrors for the San Jose Sharks. Trailing by a single goal entering the final 20 minutes in Game 2 on Wednesday night, San Jose imploded by surrendering 4 goals to the Vancouver Canucks in a 7-3 route at Rogers Arena in British Columbia. Six different Canuck skaters scored goals, including Daniel Sedin who had a pair of goals in the shellacking.

Picking up where they left off in the series opener, the Canucks out-skated San Jose most of the night. The Sharks continued to chase their tails, and paid for it in the 3rd period.

Ben Eager made himself public enemy number one in Vancouver after a hit on Henrik Sedin and some antics late in the game that will make him a target when the series resumes on Friday in San Jose. That assumes that Eager gets any ice time the rest of the series.

Aaron Rome took a tripping penalty just 1:19 into the game, putting the Sharks on the power play early. Like in Game 1, they converted on the chance when Logan Couture deposited his 7th goal of the playoffs a minute into the man advantage. Dany Heatley feathered a pass to Couture as the two skated toward the net. Couture put a move on Roberto Luongo, deeking him to the backhand side, before pulling the puck across his body for the goal.

Benn Ferriero hit the post 2 minutes later.

Joe Pavelski took his own tripping penalty at 7:50, after taking Daniel Sedin down in front of the Sharks bench. San Jose almost killed the penalty, but Vancouver answered with a power play goal from Daniel Sedin with 11 seconds left on the infraction. Seding played patty-cake with the puck in the slot, slapping a 20-foot shot past Antti Niemi for his 7th goal of the playoffs.

The Sharks fell asleep and allowed the Canucks to score 39 seconds later, when Raffi Torres tapped home a feed from Christian Ehrhoff, after the former Sharks defenseman skated the puck to the right corner and sent a pass to the front of the net. Pavelski was caught napping, allowing Torres to get a stick on the puck.

Daniel Sedin took an iffy cross checking penalty at 12:19, putting the Sharks back on the power play. San Jose made it a perfect 3-for-3 on the man advantage in the series, after Patrick Marleau punched home his 50th career playoff goal. The on-ice officials didn't see the puck cross the goal line, as it was screened by Luongo, but a video review clearly showed it sliding under the Canucks netminder.

Devin Setoguchi hit the post with a shot from 8 feet out with 4:30 to play in the period.

Marc-Edouard Vlasic got in on the close-but-no-cigar club, poking a puck on net that Luongo was able to stop with a wave of the glove.

Daniel Sedin caught Joe Thornton with a stick that drew blood late in the period, but no penalties were called. Referees Dan O'Halloran and Tim Peel also missed a high stick that Setoguchi took earlier in the contest that also resulted in exposed blood.

Niemi was on his toes 8 minutes into the 2nd period, when a pass to the slot deflected off defenseman Ian White's skate and was headed for the Sharks net. The San Jose netminder got his pad down to smother the dangerous deflection to keep the game tied.

The Canucks started to tilt the ice toward Niemi midway through the period. Their sustained pressure in the Sharks zone kept the heat on San Jose for a good 4 minute span. When the Sharks finally got the puck into the Vancouver zone, a defensive gaff cost them dearly.

The Sharks inexplicably allowed defenseman Kevin Bieksa to slip past them and race up ice on a breakaway. Marleau either blew the coverage or thought he had defensive help as Bieksa streaked by him. Bieksa finished the play with a shot that beat Niemi glove side to give Vancouver the 3-2 lead.

Thornton put a shot on net with 4 minutes left in the period, but Luongo deflected the shot safely to the right corner with a glove save.

Niemi topped Luongo's save with a kick save on a point-blank shot by Alex Edler moments later. Edler had a one-time chance after Henrik Sedin sent a pass through the slot.

A bit of frustration bubbled over late in the period when Marleau surprised everyone by dropping the gloves with Bieksa. The Sharks centerman got the short end of the stick in the bout, but he sent a message to his teammates.

Ben Eager wrapped up the period by planting Henrik Sedin with a hit that drew a boarding minor with 28 seconds left before the second intermission. The Sharks killed off the penalty, but Eager then took a bone-headed tripping penalty at 6:57 of the 3rd period.

With Eager in the box, the Canucks could have been content to simply burn clock, but their power play unit converted when Chris Higgins threw a puck on net from 12 feet out, bouncing it off Niemi and into the goal. Bieksa earned the secondary assist on the play to complete the Gordie Howe hat-trick.

The Sharks appeared to have a breakaway chance with 9 minutes left in regulation, but San Jose was whistled for too many men on the ice. That put the Canucks back on the power play, and with it came the 3rd goal on the man-advantage. Daniel Sedin tapped in his 2nd of the game off a feed from his brother to make it a 5-2 game.

The Canucks did some stat padding at the Sharks expense3 minutes later. Aaron Rome lifted a puck over Niemi at 14:30 and the rout was on.

Ryane Clowe decided to make an appearance by trying to goad Maxim Lapierre into a fight, but the Canuck had no interest. The effort earned Clowe 2 for roughing, a 10 minute misconduct and an early shower.

Mason Raymond punched a shot through Niemi, trickling it over the goal line 2 seconds after Clowe's minor expired.

As if the game couldn't get any weirder, Eager scored a goal at 17:27, threw his arms in the air in celebration, then hovered over Luongo. Somewhere along the line he drew a roughing penalty to head right back to the box.

Appropriately, San Jose finished the evening on the penalty kill after Eager and Scott Nichol took minors in a scrum behind the Canucks net.

Game Notes


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1 2 3 T
SJ 2 0 1 3
VAN 2 1 4 7
1st period - 1, SJ, Couture 7 (Heatley, White), 2:28, (pp). 2, VAN, D. Sedin 7 (H. Sedin, Hamhuis), 9:39, (pp). 3, VAN, Torres 2 (Ehrhoff, Hansen), 10:18. 4, SJ, Marleau 5 (Thornton, Boyle), 13:03, (pp).
2nd period - 5, VAN, Bieksa 3 (Higgins, Hamhuis), 12:05.
3rd period - 6, VAN, Higgins 4 (Raymond, Bieksa), 7:56, (pp). 7, VAN, D. Sedin 8 (H. Sedin, Edler), 11:41, (pp). 8, VAN, Rome 1 (Burrows, H. Sedin), 14:30. 9, VAN, Raymond 2 (Higgins, Hamhuis), 16:42. 10, SJ, Eager 1 (Pavelski, Vlasic), 17:27.
1st period - Rome, VAN (tripping), 1:19; Eager, SJ (roughing), 5:40; Torres, VAN (roughing), 5:40; Pavelski, SJ (tripping), 7:50; D. Sedin, VAN (cross checking), 12:19.
2nd period - Marleau, SJ (fighting major) 17:58; Bieksa, VAN (fighting major), 17:58; Eager, SJ (boarding), 19:32.
3rd period - Eager, SJ (tripping), 6:57; Bench, SJ (too many men), 10:47; Clowe, SJ (roughing), 14:40; Clowe, SJ (10 min misconduct), 14:40; Eager, SJ (roughing), 17:27; Eager, SJ (high sticking), 19:51; Nichol, SJ (roughing), 19:51; Eager, SJ (10 min misconduct), 19:51; Nichol, SJ (10 min misconduct), 19:51; Lapierre, VAN (10 min misconduct), 19:51; Hansen, VAN (10 min misconduct), 19:51; Rome, VAN (10 min misconduct), 19:51.
Shots Saves
SJ - Niemi 38 31
VAN - Luongo 31 28
Shots On Goal
1 2 3 T
SJ 13 9 9 31
VAN 13 14 11 38
Power Play Conversion
SJ 2 of 2
VAN 3 of 7
3 Stars of the Game
Kevin Bieksa
Chris Higgins
Henrik Sedin
Referees: O'Halloran, Peel. Linesmen: Heyer, Murray.
Holiday Gifts at BustedTees

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