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game recap

Brent Burns lifts Sharks to win against Coyotes

Defenseman scores two goals, Melker Karlsson, Micheal Haley combine for five points

by Jerry Brown / Correspondent

GLENDALE, Ariz. -- Brent Burns scored two goals, and Melker Karlsson and Micheal Haley combined for five points for the San Jose Sharks in a 4-1 win against the Arizona Coyotes at Gila River Arena on Saturday.

Burns tied his Sharks record for goals by a defenseman in a single season when he scored his 27th with 3:25 remaining to make it 4-1. He scored through traffic to give the Sharks a 1-0 lead 9:01 into the game.

"A lot of things have to go right to have goals go in," said Burns, who has scored five times in the past three games. "Playing with Paul Martin has been unbelievable for me, and to play with [Joe Thornton, Patrick Marleau, Joe Pavelski] and a lot of great players working to get me the puck. Everything leads into getting the confidence to feel good and play."


WATCH: All Sharks vs. Coyotes highlights


Since Feb. 29, 2016, Burns has 41 goals and 111 points in 104 games, including the Stanley Cup Playoffs.

"He's having an MVP season. He's been that good for us, and it's every night," San Jose coach Peter DeBoer said. "I don't know what else to say. In my mind, he's the best player in the League, and we're happy to have him on our team."

Video: SJS@ARI: Burns buries wrist shot through traffic

Backup goalie Aaron Dell made an NHL career-high 36 saves for the Sharks (35-18-6), who defeated the Coyotes for the second time in five games this season.

Playing on the fourth line with center Chris Tierney, Karlsson had a goal and two assists, and Haley had a goal and an assist to help San Jose build a 3-0 lead.

"We were really good. We played a simple game, we got the pucks deep and do what we do best," Karlsson said. "It doesn't happen that often, to be part of three goals, and it's fun to contribute that way. We lost some points against this team this year, and it was nice to get two points."

Video: SJS@ARI: Burns scores second goal on a power play

Martin Hanzal scored his 15th goal for the Coyotes (20-30-7), who were 3-0-1 the first four games against the Sharks. Arizona had scored two or more goals in 13 straight games and was 7-3-1 in its past 11.

Mike Smith made 29 saves, but his career .944 save percentage against the Sharks took a hit when he allowed three goals in the first 22:34.

"I wasn't the sharpest I've been, that's for sure," Smith said. "When that's the case, it winds up going against you."

Karlsson put the Sharks up 2-0 when he elected to keep the puck on a 2-on-1 with Tierney, and his shot deflected in off Coyotes defenseman Luke Schenn's leg at 14:26 of the first.

"It was critical for us to get some goals on Smith because he's had our number," DeBoer said. "Especially some early goals gave Aaron a comfort zone."

Video: SJS@ARI: Karlsson snaps a quick shot past Smith

The Sharks pushed the lead to 3-0 2:34 into the second period. Martin set up Haley for a shot that beat Smith to the stick side for his first goal in 44 games.

Hanzal scored his fifth goal in the past five games 33 seconds into the third period, jamming in the rebound of an Alex Goligoski shot to get the Coyotes within 3-1.

Goal of the game

Haley beat Smith with a one-timer for his first goal since March 5 against the Vancouver Canucks.

Video: SJS@ARI: Haley rifles home blistering one-timer

Save of the game

Dell got the crook of his elbow on Radim Vrbata's one-touch shot off a cross-crease pass from Hanzal at 1:06 of the second period to barely keep the puck from crossing the goal line.


Unsung performance of the game

Tierney didn't get on the score sheet but was plus-3 in 14:42 and was in the middle of two San Jose goals.

Highlight of the game

Dell robbed Arizona's Brendan Perlini 1-on-1 from close range at 12:36 of the second period to keep the Sharks up 3-0.

Video: SJS@ARI: Dell comes up big, stones Perlini in close

They said it

"We know what he's done to us over the past few games. He's stopped a lot of pucks. But when you get one or two on him early on, it kind of breaks him down a little bit and it makes them play from behind." -- Sharks captain Joe Pavelski on Coyotes goalie Mike Smith, who allowed six goals on 127 shots in his three previous games against San Jose

Need to know

The Sharks were not called for a penalty. ... Burns is three goals from becoming the ninth defenseman in NHL history to score 30 or more goals in a season.

What's next

Sharks: Host the Boston Bruins on Sunday (8:30 p.m. ET; NBCSN, NHL.TV)

Coyotes: At the Anaheim Ducks on Monday (9 p.m. ET; SN1, PRIME, FS-A, NHL.TV)


Video: Burns, Karlsson lead Sharks to 4-1 win vs. Coyotes

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