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Finally a big win
Road trip starts with a 6-0 Duck hunt
3/12/21 - By Mike Lee -

Big wins have been nonexistent for the Sharks this season, so as they kicked off a 4-game road trip it was a refreshing change of pace to punch an opponent in the mouth. They did just that by beating the host Anaheim Ducks 6-0 at the Honda Center on Friday night. Six different skaters scored for the Sharks and Devyn Dubnyk made 34 saves to earn his 33rd career shutout.

Dubnyk made his third consecutive start for San Jose, who seem to have soured on Martin Jones play this season. Dubnyk was steady Eddie in net for San Jose, making the simple saves all night, and adding stops on chances that could have been momentum shifting opportunities for the Ducks.

San Jose took advantage of a Ducks roster that is riddled with injuries. Seven regulars were on the shelf for Anaheim and the Sharks made the most of their chances.

Tomas Hertl made his return to the lineup for the first time in 6 games after being placed in COVID protocol. The Sharks forward made his presence felt early, when he scored his 7th goal of the season 7:57 into the contest on a power play chance. Jakob Silfverberg setup the man-advantage for San Jose after being sent off for hooking. Hertl pumped a one-time chance from the bottom of the right circle that hit Ducks goaltender John Gibson and bounced over the goal line.

The highlight of the period was a brief bout between Kurtis Gabriel and the NHL's fight leader last season, Nicolas Deslauriers. Both players landed punches, cutting their opponent for a bloody draw.

The Ducks had a chance to counter the Sharks goal with a power play chance of their own later in the period after Radim Simek was whistled for hooking, but the Sharks penalty killers held to keep the 1-0 lead intact at the first intermission.

San Jose extended their lead in the opening minute of the 2nd period after goaltender Devyn Dubnyk stoned Max Comtois with a toe save from in tight. The Sharks raced up the ice where Brent Burns sent a 40 foot pass from the right wing to the back door where Kane was there to snap it home for his 10th tally of the season.

Isac Lundestrom added to the Ducks woes by taking a tripping penalty 4:53 into the 3rd period. The Sharks cashed in on the man advantage when Erik Karlsson ripped a shot from the high point, slipping the puck past Gibson who was screened on the play.

That goal seemed to break the Ducks back, as San Jose piled on. Timo Meier bagged his 5th goal of the season two minutes later with an uncontested snipe from the left dot. Meier collected a Matt Nieto feed then snapped a shot that beat Gibson by tucking under the crossbar.

Kevin Labanc made it a 5-0 lead 73 seconds later when he one-timed a shot from the right side for his 6th goal of the season. Kane setup the goal by making a slick move to evade a check as he raced up the left side before whipping the puck to Labanc on the off wing. Gibson was pulled in favor of Ryan Miller who mopped up over the final 10 minutes of the contest.

Frederik Handemark scored his first career NHL goal at 15:03. The Sharks 27 year-old centerman did it all by himself, out-working Sam Steel on the forecheck. Handemark stripped Steel of the puck as both were skating back toward the Anaheim net. The young Swede collected the puck then snapped a shot that slipped past Miller to record his memorable goal.

Game Notes:

* Frederik Handemark was recalled and played limited minutes, but he made his presence felt with 4 hits in the game in addition to his first NHL goal. It was only his 2nd NHL game. He made his debut, skating for San Jose earlier this season.

* The win marked the first time this season that San Jose won consecutive games. They were the last team in the league to do so.

* Devyn Dubnyk's shutout was the first recorded by a Sharks goaltender this season.

* The only thing the Sharks didn't do well was win faceoffs. San Jose was 26 of 55 (47%) on draws.

* Passing was the name of the game. San Jose scored most of their goals on great setups with the puck. Brent Burns pass to Evender Kane was world class. Kane's setup on the Kevin Labanc goal was another example of precision passing generating offense.


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1 2 3 T
SJ 1 1 4 6
ANA 0 0 0 0
1st period - 1, SJ, Hertl 7 (Burns, Meier), 7:57, (pp).
2nd period - 2, SJ, Kane 10 (Burns, Labanc), 0:37.
3rd period - 3, SJ, Karlsson 2 (Labanc, Couture), 5:58, (pp). 4, SJ, Meier 5 (Nieto, Hertl), 8:03. 5, SJ, Labanc 6 (Kane, Ferraro), 9:16. 6, SJ, Handemark 1 (unassisted), 15:03.
1st period - Siflverberg, ANA (hooking), 5:59; Gabriel, SJ (fighting major), 11:35; Deslauriers, ANA (fighting major), 11:35; Simek, SJ (hooking), 15:34.
2nd period - None.
3rd period - Lundstrom, ANA (tripping), 4:53.
Shots Saves
SJ - Dubnyk 34 34
ANA - Gibson 24 19
ANA - Miller 3 2
Shots On Goal
1 2 3 T
SJ 5 11 11 27
ANA 11 16 7 34
Power Play Conversion
SJ 2 of 2
ANA 0 of 1
3 Stars of the Game
Evander Kane
Erik Karlsson
Devyn Dubnyk
Honda Center - No attendance,
Referees: Rehman, Walsh. Linesmen: Gawryletz, Knorr.

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