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Sharks continue road trip at Detroit

by Brian Compton /
SHARKS (12-9-4) at RED WINGS (17-4-3)


Last 10: San Jose 4-4-2; Detroit 7-1-2.

Season Series: This is the second of four meetings between the Western Conference rivals. The Red Wings won Round 1 when they earned a 5-3 victory at HP Pavilion on Nov. 30. It was the first time the teams met since San Jose eliminated Detroit from last season's Stanley Cup Playoffs.

Big Story: They're hardly a last-place team, but that's where the Sharks find themselves in what is an incredibly-competitive Pacific Division. With just four wins in their last 10 games, the Sharks are trail fourth-place Anaheim by one point and first-place Dallas by five. The Stars have created some space due to an 8-1-1 run over their last 10 games.

Team Scope:

Sharks: San Jose had no answer for Montreal's stifling defense and goaltending on Saturday afternoon in a 3-1 loss at the Bell Centre. Benn Ferriero scored the lone goal for the Sharks, while the top line of Joe Thornton, Dany Heatley and Patrick Marleau was completely shut down. Twenty-six of the Sharks' 27 shots on goal were denied by Habs goalie Carey Price.

"We had a lot of shots -- some were quality chances, some were from the outside," Heatley said. "But if you let Carey see pucks, he's going to stop them. He had a lot of shots, but he had a lot of easy saves tonight."

Red Wings: They didn't get the win, but the Wings managed to secure another point in the standings Saturday night in a 3-2 overtime loss at Los Angeles. Chris Osgood, who missed the previous 13 games with a groin injury, returned to the lineup and made 22 saves. Jonathan Ericsson and Todd Bertuzzi scored for Detroit, which boats a 10-1-2 record at Joe Louis Arena.

"When you're hurt and can't play, the more disappointed you are as you go along," Osgood said. "Then, as you get closer and closer, you get more antsy to get back in the nets. So it was good that I played on this road trip, because I wasn't sure if I would. I didn't feel any different than I did against Nashville, so that was good.

"It's something to build on and look forward to the next time I get in there. I was anxious to play again, but I don't get nervous anymore."

Who's Hot: Ferriero scored his third goal in four games and has recorded points in each of the four games he has played since being recalled from AHL Worcester. … Detroit center Pavel Datsyuk has 29 points (8 goals, 21 assists) in 24 games this season. He has points in each of his last four games.

Injury Report: Sharks defensemen Jason Demers (upper body), Niclas Wallin (left ankle) and Kent Huskins (upper body) are day-to-day. Devin Setoguchi (upper body) is out. … Detroit center Mike Modano is out with a severed tendon in his wrist.

Stat Pack: Sharks blueliner Marc-Edouard Vlasic has not recorded a point in 25 games this season. … Wings defenseman Brad Stuart leads the team with 53 blocked shots. He is on pace to surpass last season's total of 133.

Puck Drop: "That guy is unbelievable. With the firepower and offensive skill he has, you have to be real careful playing against him and (forward Henrik) Zetterberg and the rest of those guys. You just have to make the right decision 100 percent of the time." -- Kings center Anze Kopitar on Pavel Datsyuk
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