The NHL's 19th ranked power play and 28th
ranked penalty kill played like it on Thursday night and that would mean an
unfavorable outcome for the San Jose Sharks. Going 0-for-2 on the power play
and 0-for-1 on the penalty kill was lethal as the Sharks fell 2-1 to the
Winnipeg Jets at SAP Center. The Sharks not-so-special teams fell short as it
has all season and that would extend the Sharks losing streak to 10 games.
It was the second time this season that San Jose has strung together
10 or more consecutive losses. They opened the season 0-10-1, and are one loss
from matching that dubious start.
On the bright side. The Sharks held
one of the better teams in the league to a single 5-on-5 goal. The defense has
been nothing short of leaky the last 2 weeks, so better containment is a move
in the right direction.
Josh Morrissey was called for a hooking
penalty at 8:19 of the 2nd period, which was the only infraction called through
the first 40 minutes of the game. The Sharks would not score on the power play
chance, but Alexander Barabanov converted 7 seconds after the penalty expired.
William Eklund carried the puck up the left side then slid a pass to
this right. Barabanov was trailing near the left circle and a quick release
after receiving Eklund's feed beat Jets goaltender Connor Hellebuyck with his
3rd tally of the season.
Winnipeg answered 82 seconds later when
Morgan Barron redirected a Neal Pionk shot while jostling in front of the
Sharks net. Pionk unleashed his attempt from the top of the right circle,
firing it at a slew of bodies out in front of MacKenzie Blackwood. Barron's
deflection was agonizingly slow, but Sharks defenseman Marc-Edouard Vlasic was
late to get a stick on it before it crossed the goal line.
Filip Zadina made things increasingly more
complicated for the Sharks at 2:03 when he hooked Adam Lowry in front of the
Sharks net. Winnipeg converted on the ensuing power play when Gabriel Vilardi
tapped home a pass from Nikolaj Ehlers. Vilardi was parked on the left post and
dunked the punk home after Ehlers hit him from the top of the right circle.
Mark Scheifele was called for hooking at 8:54. San Jose's special
teams play was par for the season, failing to convert when it counted the most.
The Sharks threw everything they had at Hellebuyck in the final
minutes, but the big goaltender denied them. Winnipeg would out-shoot the
Sharks in that 3rd period 13-12, but it was that one additional shot that did
the Sharks in. Game Notes:
* Tomas Hertl was named an
NHL All Star on Thursday afternoon. This will mark Hertl's 2nd appearance in an
All Star Game.
* The Sharks announced that Matt Benning underwent
successful hip surgery. The defenseman will be sidelined for the remainder of
the season, although he is expected to be ready for training camp in September.
Benning will have missed 56 games this season.
* Kyle Burroughs, Kevin
Labanc and Nikita Okhotiuk were all scratched. Burroughs has missed 2 of the
last 3 games. It was the 4th consecutive scratch for Labanc.
Zetterlund led San Jose with 4 shots on goal. The Sharks had 4 skaters with 3
shots on goal.
* San Jose dominated the faceoff circle, winning 32 of
46 draws for a 70% win rate.