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Sharks drop 4-3 OT decision to Colorado
Avalanche clinch playoff spot with OT win over SJ
4/4/2023 - By Mike Lee

The Sharks are in the home stretch of their season. With the playoffs an afterthought, the Sharks hosted the Colorado Avalanche in the front end of a rare back-to-back home series against the same opponent on Tuesday night. With the NHL standings basement in their view, San Jose extended their point streak to 4 games by losing to the Avalanche 4-3 in overtime. The Sharks overcame a 3-1 deficit in the 3rd period to get to the extra period. but Nathan MacKinnon converted 3:13 into the extra period to lead Colorado.

The Avalanche clinched a playoff spot by virtue of reaching the overtime, but MacKinnon added some icing to Colorado's night by scoring his 36th goal of the season to knock off the Sharks.

It was yet another loss, but by reaching the overtime, San Jose earned another point to separate themselves from the Anaheim Ducks and Columbus Blue Jackets who sit at the bottom of the NHL standings with 56 points. The Sharks now sit at 60 points with 5 games to play. Chicago, Columbus and Anaheim all have one fewer game than San Jose.

The Avalanche grabbed a 1-0 lead 4:29 into the contest on a fortuitous deflection out in front of goaltender Kaapo Kahkonen. Jack Johnson cranked a shot from the top of the right circle. hitting defenseman Henry Thrun in the leg guard, which changed the trajectory of the puck enough to fool Kahkonen.

Colorado doubled their lead 2 minutes later when Evan Rodrigues converted his 15th goal of the season. Nathan MacKinnon drove in on the right side before trying a back-handed spin-o-rama attempt that Khakonen stopped, but Rodrigues was parked on the doorstep and slipped a backhand chance of his own around the netminder's right pad.

Kevin Labanc cut the Avalanche lead to a lone goal by scoring his 14th goal of the season 12:55 into the 2nd period. The Sharks winger carried the puck into the Colorado zone on the left side before snapping a shot that beat Alexandar Georgiev, catching the upper right corner of the net.

Nathan MacKinnon pushed the Avs back up by a pair by powering a shot through Kahkonen with 2:06 remaining in the period. MacKinnon turned on a shot from 20 feet out that hit the Sharks goaltender in the pad but the shot had enough on it to carry it over the goal line.

Denis Malgin should have padded the Avalanche lead in the final minute when he found himself with the puck and a wide open net, but Kahkonen's right leg pad was outstretched enough to deny a would be goal.

Jacob Peterson scored his 2nd goal of the season at 5:50 after Kurtis Macdermid was sent off for tripping a minute earlier. Danil Gushchin stick-handled the puck behind the Avalanche net, before sliding a pass out front where Peterson swatted at it. The Sharks forward didn't catch the puck squarely, but he chipped it over Georgiev and into the Colorado goal.

Labanc tied the game at 7:11 on a shot from in tight after he gathered the puck and pivoted 180 to face the net and lift a shot past Georgiev to make it a 3-3 game.

MacKinnon finished off the Sharks on a breakaway chance after Devon Toews fired a lead pass up the right wing.

Game Notes:

* The Sharks recalled left wing Danil Gushchin two days after they returned him to the San Jose Barracuda. The rookie forward scored his 1st NHL goal in his first NHL game on Saturday in the Sharks big 7-2 win over Arizona.

* Tomas Hertl was injured early in the 2nd period and missed a good chunk of the period, but returned with 8 minutes remaining in the frame, only to leave with 2 minutes remaining in the period.

* Kaapo Kahkonen made 38 saves in the loss. The netminder was the best Sharks player on the ice, stopping several shots to keep San Jose in the game.

* Evgeny Svechnikov returned to the lineup after missing the last 7 games due to an upper body injury.

* Alexander Barabanov missed his 4th straight game, and there is talk that the Sharks may simply shut him down for the remainder of the season for an undisclosed injury.


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1 2 3 OT T
COL 2 1 0 1 4
SJ 0 1 2 0 3
1st period - 1, COL, Johnson 2 (Byram, Malgin), 4:29. 2, COL, Rodrigues 15 (MacKinnon, Rantanen), 6:24.
2nd period - 3, SJ, Labanc 14 (Couture, Karlsson), 12:55. 4, COL, MacKinnon 35 (Rantanen, Toews), 17:54.
3rd period - 5, SJ, Peterson 2 (Gushchin, Couture), 5:50, (pp). 6, SJ, Labanc 15 (Gregor, MacDOnald), 7:11.
Overtime - 7, COL, MacKinnon 36 (Toews), 3:13.
1st period - None.
2nd period - MacDonald, SJ (tripping), 2:54; Hertl, SJ (unsportsmanlike conduct), 14:39.
3rd period - Sturm, SJ (hooking), 1:20; MacDermid, COL (tripping), 4:59.
Overtime - None.
Shots Saves
COL - Georgiev 31 28
SJ - Khakonen 42 38
Shots On Goal
1 2 3 OT T
COL 13 19 8 2 42
SJ 7 11 9 4 31
Power Play Conversion
COL 0 of 3
SJ 1 of 1
3 Stars of the Game
Nathan MacKinnon
Kappo Kahkonen
Erik Karlsson
SAP Center - 11,067
Referees: #28 Chris Lee, #47 Carter Sandlak. Linesmen: #74 Trent Knorr, #57 Justin Johnson.

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