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Thornton believes Game 3 is key for Sharks

By Dave Lozo - NHL.com Staff Writer

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Thornton believes Game 3 is key for Sharks
Sharks center Joe Thornton believes the most important game in a series is the third one. That's why his team needs a win so badly.
CHICAGO -- Sharks center Joe Thornton was in a pretty good mood after his team's practice at United Center on Thursday, despite San Jose being in a 2-0 series hole against the Chicago Blackhawks, with Game 3 set for Friday (8 p.m. ET, VERSUS, TSN, RDS).

"Jumbo" Joe sat at his locker after the hour-long skate and talked about the approach of Dan Boyle, how tough it is to be up against Blackhawks center Dave Bolland, and what the Sharks need to do differently to get back into the series.

Q: Patrick Kane said it's strange, but Game 3 is a must-win for the Blackhawks. Is this game a must-win for the Sharks?

Thornton: I think it's probably a must-win game for both teams, to be honest with you. If they win, they got the stranglehold on the series. If we win, we're back in the series. Game 3's always in the postseason are very vital.

Q: Dave Bolland has been assigned to shut down your line, but do you also find him to be irritating to play against?

Thornton: I don't find him very irritating. I find him very easy to play against, to be honest with you. I'm a pretty big guy and he's a little guy. I don't find it too difficult at all.

Q: What's your experience in the building (United Center)?

Thornton: Good. I love playing in this building. It's pretty electric. You know, 20,000 fans going crazy, it's a good building to play in. We've had some success in the past and we're looking forward to that tomorrow.

Q: Can you feed off energy in the United Center?

Thornton: I hope so. We need a win tomorrow night, so hopefully we can feed off their fans' energy.

Q: Can you talk about Dan Boyle's approach and personality and what he means to this dressing room?

Thornton: He's light, just easy. He's just always relaxed, it seems. It doesn't seem like anything fazes him. All the guys love being around him. He's very contagious. He's just a light-spirited guy that all the guys like to be around.

Q: The frustration or emotion or whatever you want to call it, what you showed on the ice at the end of Game 2 -- do you think that's a healthy thing?

Thornton: We know we can be better and we saw some video this morning that showed we can be better. Yeah, you're going to go through your ups and downs we realize it's a big game tomorrow night. It's good. We addressed everything. We'll be ready for tomorrow."

Q: Are there specific things where you guys can be better?

Thornton: Yeah.

Q: Can you talk a little bit about them?

Thornton: No (laughter). You'll see tomorrow night.

Follow Dave Lozo on Twitter: @DLozoNHL



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