The Sharks wrapped up their 3-game home stand
with a disappointing shootout loss to the visiting New Jersey Devils at SAP
Center on Saturday night. Like the St Louis Blues on Thursday night, the Devils
faced San Jose a day after dropping a game in Los Angeles. For the second
straight time, it was the Sharks that looked like the team with the tired legs,
allowing the opposition to beat them at home.
Dropping their game in
Los Angeles on Friday, the Devils dictated play in both the first and last 10
minutes of regulation. Sharks goaltender James Reimer held serve in the opening
of the contest, but he couldn't hold serve late.
The Sharks got off to
a sluggish start and didn't record a shot on goal until the 4:10 mark of the
game. New Jersey would out-shoot San Jose 10-9 in the period, but San Jose
didn't get credit for three chances that rank off metal.
They held a
pair of leads in the game, but allowed New Jersey to sneak back into the game
before dropping the contest to the Devils in the skills competition.
The Sharks broke the ice on the score sheet when Rudolfs Balcers scored his 2nd
goal of the season 4:48 into the 2nd period. The Sharks forward traded passes
with Mario Ferraro, before slamming a shot home from just outside the right
post. The last pass came from Ferraro out of the left corner, slicing through
the slot to Balcers for the slam dunk goal.
A pair of defensive lapses
cost the Sharks near the end of the period. Rookie defenseman Santeri Hatakka
turned the puck over at his own blueline, then Ryan Graves lost Tomas Hertl on
the left side when he collected a Nico Hischier pass and buried it at 16:45 for
the 1-1 tie.
The two teams traded penalties early in the 3rd period,
allowing each other a man advantage opportunity. San Jose made the most of
their chance when Jonathan Dahlen converted for his 5th goal of the season at
4:21. The rookie forward collected a Brent Burns pass at the top of the right
circle, then ripped a shot that tucked under the crossbar to help San Jose
reclaim the lead.
Jonah Gadjovich missed on a golden chance to score
his first NHL goal just passed the midway mark of the period when a lead pass
setup a short breakaway chance. The Sharks forward skated in on net, but Devils
goaltender Jonathan Bernier got his right toe out to block Gadjovich's scoring
The Devils had another chance on the man advantage with 5:37
to play when Andrew Cogliano was called for tipping Dawson Mercer. The Sharks
killed the power play, their 4th kill of the night, but the Devils had numbers
after the penalty expired and Janne Kuokkanen pushed a shot past James Reimer
at 17:04 after the Sharks netminder got caught out of position.
Jose out-shot the Devils 4-3 in the overtime, but neither team could push a
puck past the opposing goaltender. In the shootout, the Sharks grabbed the
early lead when Logan Couture beat Bernier, but Balcers and Hertl missed on
their chances. Reimer appeared to stop Jesper Bratt's chance with a pad save,
but the momentum of the puck allowed it to trickle over the goal line. Damon
Severson ended it with a shot that beat Reimer. Game
* Per Darin Stevens, with his 2 point night, Brent Burns has
tied Sergei Zubov for most points in NHL history by a defenseman with one team
after being traded (549).
* The Sharks missed out on a golden
opportunity to score an additional point at home, now they get to head out on
the road for another 5-game trek that will be tougher than their last road
trip. Games in Calgary, Winnipeg, Colorado, Minnesota and St Louis will be a
real test for San Jose.
* Rookie defenseman Santeri Hatakka's ice time
went to zero after his third period turnover which led to the Devils game tying
* Nick Bonino was moved to the wing as San Jose still deals with
the rash of players who are on the league's COVID protocol. None of those
players will b eligible to play the first two games of the upcoming trip, which
are in Canada.
* Jonathan Dahlen was noticeably irritated with the
outcome of the game in the post game press conference. The rookie brushed aside
a question about his personal accomplishments, and pointed out this irritation
with losing this game.