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Flames routed by Sharks, drop fifth straight

by Brian Hunter
The San Jose Sharks not only extended the Calgary Flames’ miseries, they might have created a few new ones.

Eight different players scored for the Sharks, a new franchise record, and they chased Miikka Kiprusoff from the net in routing the Flames 9-1 on Monday night at HP Pavilion.

With the victory, San Jose tied Chicago for the Presidents’ Trophy lead with 72 points. Calgary, meanwhile, has lost five in a row and seven of eight.

Dany Heatley scored twice for the Sharks. Joe Pavelski had a goal and three assists, Scott Nichol and Jed Ortmeyer had a goal and two assists and Manny Malhotra, Ryane Clowe and Devin Setoguchi each had a goal and an assist. Rob Blake had their other tally.

"I think for everyone getting on the scoreboard, it was fantastic to get the third- and fourth-liners out there and chip in a few goals to help the big boys out a little bit," said Nichol, who scored just his second goal in 50 games this season. It was also his 100th NHL point.

Kiprusoff was peppered with 34 shots over the first two periods, allowing six goals before he was replaced for the third by Curtis McElhinney.

Robyn Regehr had the only goal for the Flames, beating Evgeni Nabokov at 7:41 of the third.

"It's obviously very embarrassing and disappointing," Calgary coach Brent Sutter said of his team’s recent play. "There are certain things you expect from individuals and we didn't come close to it. It's very humbling to see what happened. When you get beat this bad you better realize it's a wakeup call."

San Jose scored three times in each period. Pavelski got them going 4:07 into the first by knocking in the rebound of a Douglas Murray point shot for his first goal since Dec. 30. Malhotra netted what turned out to be the game-winner at 6:20 when he got past Calgary defenseman Dion Phaneuf and wristed a shot past Kiprusoff, and Nichol scored his first goal in 26 games with 5:26 left in the period.

"We've been playing hard, we've had our opportunities, and it's good to see it go in a few times … for all the guys tonight,” said Pavelski, whose four points were a career high. "It was just a fun game."

Ortmeyer, Heatley and Clowe scored in a six-minute span late in the second to chase Kiprusoff. Setoguchi, Blake and Heatley again victimized McElhinney in the third.

"That's about rock bottom," Flames forward Eric Nystrom said. "The only place to go is up from here. You guys aren't blind, there are a lot of things we have to do to get better. It's about pride and we didn't have very much today."

It's safe to say that by the end of the third the Sharks were already thinking about the game they will play Tuesday night in Los Angeles. The Kings have made life tough on the Pacific Division leaders this season, going 3-1-1 in their first five matchups.

"This one's over. We're done, we have to move on," San Jose coach Todd McLellan said. “We'll get some food in us, some water in us, and get to L.A., get some rest. We know they're coming. They’re a good hockey club."

Material from wire services and team broadcast media was used in this report.

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