The Sharks had been planning the retirement of
Patrick Marleau's #12 for more than a year. Lots of planning and organization
went into the gala event held at SAP Center on Saturday night. The Sharks
rolled out the red carpet, invited former Sharks players and held a grand
ceremony. The only thing they couldn't deliver was a win on this grand evening.
San Jose made a last ditch effort in regulation, tying the game late, but they
would fall to the Chicago Blackhawks 4-3 in the shootout.
was the theme of the night, except for the wins that the Sharks often enjoyed
with #12 on the ice. This version of the Sharks is a shell of those Marleau led
teams, and true to form, they would fail to deliver on such a big night in San
I was a big flub on a night that could have been so much more.
David Gust opening a wild 1st period with his 1st career NHL goal 2:14
into the contest. Gust worked his way to the top of the crease while linemate
Jason Dickinson worked the puck out of the left corner. Colin Blackwell put the
puck right on Gust's stick for a tap in.
The Sharks answered 2 minutes
later when Nick Bonino punched home a rebound chance from the left side. The
Sharks forced a Blackhawks turnover in the Chicago zone, before Jacob MacDonald
put a shot on Petr Mrazek from the high slot. Mrazek made the initial save, but
a juicy rebound flipped over to Bonino for the put back chance that resulted in
the veteran forward's 10th goal of the season.
Journeyman winger Brett
Seney put the Blackhawks back on top less than a minute later. Seney received a
lead pass from Caleb Jones on the left wing then raced into the Sharks zone
before ripping a shot that beat Kaapo Kahkonen top shelf to the right corner.
The resurgent Evgeny Svechnikov re-tied the game with his 8th goal of
the season at the 10:52 mark. The Sharks worked the puck to the front of the
net after Marc-Edouard Vlasic tried to find a seam, but Mrazek knocked the shot
down. Nico Sturm tried to follow that up with a put-back, but the puck went
wide of the right post. The German forward pursued it behind the Blackhawks
net, then hit Svechnikov in the slot for the one-time chance that would find
twine. The goal was Svechnikov's 8th of the season and the 4th in the last 7
games for the Russian forward.
After a penalty free opening period,
the Sharks were assessed three separate minor infractions that setup 6 minutes
worth of power play time for Chicago. The Sharks 2nd ranked penalty kill would
snuff out all three chances, but it stymied much offensive flow for San Jose.
Inspired by a non-call in the middle period on a Scott Harrington high
stick that cost him several teeth, Max Domi scored an inspired goal 16 seconds
into the 3rd period to help Chicago reclaim the lead. Domi gathered a Jake
McCabe pass then raced up the left side before beating Kahkonen for his 18th
goal of the season.
Noah Gregor appeared to tie the game at 3:43, but
Martin Kaut was offside after a challenge by Blackhawks head coach Luke
Erik Karlsson tied the game a third time with 2:11
remaining in regulation. The Sharks cycled the puck around the perimeter before
Karlsson unloaded from the left point. The shot looked to have been screened by
Mikey Eyssimont but it found a seam to beat Mrazek and get the game to
In the overtime, the Sharks were immediately put
short-handed after Logan Couture was called for holding the stick. The Sharks
killed that penalty, their 4th of the game, then made things interesting in the
last minute of the extra period. San Jose put 5 shots on Mrazek in the extra 5
minutes. Game Notes:
* The night was filled with video
tributes for Patrick Marleau. Brent Burns and Joe Pavelski were two notable
former Sharks who chimed in with video messages to Marleau.
Kane traveled back to Chicago and was not in San Jose for the game as the
Blackhawks continue to try and work a trade for their star forward.
Timo Meier missed his 3rd straight game with what the Sharks are calling a
lower body injury. No word on if its simply a move to keep Meier healthy
leading up to the trade deadline, which is now less than a week away.
* Tomas Hertl has scored 2 goals in his last 22 games. The Sharks forward has
fizzled in the second half of the season and as a big money forward has really
let the Sharks down this season.
* The last image of this special
Saturday night, should be Patrick Marleau's jersey hanging from the SAP Center
rafters. Marleau is Mr. San Jose, and his number was the first to fly in San