The Sharks were dead to rights. Down 4-1 in
the 3rd period with 8 minutes to play, San Jose figured out how to even the
game in regulation before William Eklund bagged his 6th goal of the season with
4.3 seconds remaining in overtime to steal their biggest win of the season at
UBS Arena in Elmont, New York on Tuesday night. The improbable 5-4 win earned
the Sharks their 2nd victory on their current 6-game road trip after dropping
their first 11 away from SAP Center this season.
With time winding
down in the extra period, Mikael Granlund carried the puck up ice before
dropping it to a trailing Eklund between the circles. Veering toward the right
post, Eklund held the puck for a split second before snapping a shot that beat
Islanders goaltender Ilya Sorokin to cap the wildest finish of the year.
The win was the 4th victory in their last 6 games, turning the tables
on what has otherwise been a miserable start to the season.
It was a
supreme about face from the situation that the Sharks put themselves in before
Tomas Hertl recorded his 6th career hat trick to bring San Jose back from the
dead. San Jose's special teams has been area that is beyond in need of
reclamation, and it was the power play and penalty kill that almost buried them
in this one.
The Sharks fell behind 1-0 after failing to convert on a
Kyle Palmieri tripping penalty. The Islanders moved the puck briskly into the
Sharks zone then caught the defense leaning to the right side when Simon
Holmstrom found Julien Gauthier on the off wing. Gauthier gathered the
cross-ice feed and teed up a shot that caught the upper right corner for his
2nd tally of the season.
The Sharks responded less than 3 minutes
later when Tomas Hertl pumped a shot past Sorokin from the high slot. Anthony
Duclair grabbed a puck behind the Islanders net before spotting his linemate
cutting down the slot and sliding a pass to Hertl out in front.
Burroughs hooking penalty 3:32 into the 2nd period would serve as yet another
reminder that penalties are fatal to San Jose's game this season. The Islanders
converted their power play chance when Brock Nelson who walked the puck from
the right dot before roofing a shot to the upper left corner from the edge of
the circle closest to Kaapo Kahkonen.
The Sharks were presented with a
chance to square things up 3:18 into the 3rd period when Casey Cizikas was sent
off for high sticking Filip Zadina. The Sharks started the power play by
immediately surrendering a 2-on-1 break to the Islanders. Kahkonen denied the
scoring chance, but San Jose would give up a second scoring chance that the
Islanders wouldn't miss.
What's worse is that the Sharks quit on the
power play, and Mike Reilly made them pay. The Islanders forward deposited his
1st goal of the season with the short-handed goal to make it a 3-1 game with
the shorthanded goal.
San Jose decided that they were making things easy
enough for their opponent so Burroughs took his own high sticking penalty at
5:58, which was followed by a tripping infraction to Hertl. tripping
Hertl took forever to skate to the box after taking a seat on the bench, and
was visibly dejected as he lumbered to the box. San Jose killed Burroughs
infraction, but Ryan Pulock uncorked a shot from the left side that beat
Kahkonen for New York's 4th goal of the night.
Kevin Labanc scored his
1st goal of the year at 11:55 on a redirect of a Nikita Okhotiuk shot. That
made it a 4-2 game.
Hertl made things interesting when he punched home
a loose puck from the right side with 3:11 remaining in regulation.
San Jose pulled Kahkonen with 2 minutes to play and the move paid off. Hertl
bagged the hat trick, setting up Eklund's overtime stunner. Game
* The Sharks announced that Ryan Carpenter was placed on
injured reserve for a lower body injury. Filip Zadina returned to the lineup
after missing the last 5 games. Nico Stum also returned after missing Sunday
night's loss to the New York Rangers.
* The power play goal
surrendered to the Islanders was the 11th allowed in the Sharks last 12 games.
They have plummeted to 31st in the league on the penalty kill.
Islanders have blown 10 leads this season and their fans let them hear it at
the end of regulation. The boos were more than discernable as New York fell to
* Fabian Zetterlund was originally credited with an assist on
Tomas Hertl's 1st goal of the game, but it was retracted by the scorekeeper.
The Sharks forward still finished the game with a +4 rating to lead San Jose.
Hertl led San Jose with 7 shots on goal.
* Sharks prospect Jake
Furlong has been invited to Hockey Canada's National Junior Team Selection