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Sharks-Mighty Ducks Preview @NHLdotcom
Sharks-Mighty Ducks Preview

GAME: San Jose Sharks (14-12-4) at Anaheim Mighty Ducks (14-13-6).

TIME: Sunday, 8 p.m. EST.

Dominant since being acquired by the San Jose Sharks, Joe Thornton hopes to help his new team extend its season-best winning streak to seven games in the opener of a home-and-home series with the Anaheim Mighty Ducks.

San Jose had lost 10 in a row before getting Thornton from Boston on Nov. 30, and has won all six games since trading for the former Bruins captain. He's had at least two points in all six contests, including a goal and an assist in the Sharks' 4-1 win over the Washington Capitals on Friday.

Jonathan Cheechoo, Alyn McCauley and rookie Milan Michalek also scored for the Sharks, who showed no rust from a five-day layoff.

"We looked fresh," Thornton said. "We looked good, all 20 guys."

Thornton has 12 goals and 35 assists this season, including three goals and 11 assists with San Jose.

The Sharks are riding their longest win streak since a seven-game run from Jan. 30-Feb. 28, 2002.

The Mighty Ducks, meanwhile, have alternated losses and wins in their last five games, including a 4-3 shootout loss to the Los Angeles Kings on Friday.

Joffrey Lupul had a goal and an assist for the Ducks, who also got goals from Todd Marchant and Petr Sykora.

Jean-Sebastien Giguere stopped 34 shots, including a breakaway by Pavol Demitra with 33 seconds left in the third period. But Demitra put a different move on Giguere in the shootout, scoring one of the Kings' two goals.

The Ducks managed to force overtime after being outshot 15-4 in the first 17 minutes and trailing 2-0.

"We came back from being down 2-0 and did a lot of good things," forward Teemu Selanne said. "I think we had a lot of chances and we couldn't take advantage. On some nights it's tough like that."

The teams will finish the home-and-home set Tuesday at San Jose.

STANDINGS: Sharks - 32 points, 5th place, 9 PB, Pacific Division. Mighty Ducks - 34 points, 3rd place (tied), 7 PB, Pacific Division.

TEAM LEADERS: Sharks - Cheechoo, 13 goals; Thornton, 35 assists and 47 points; Mark Smith, 46 PIM. Mighty Ducks - Selanne, 16 goals and 27 points; Scott Niedermayer, 18 assists; Todd Fedoruk, 57 PIM.

SPECIAL TEAMS: Sharks - Power play: 15.3 percent (29 for 189), 22nd in NHL. Penalty killing: 82.5 percent (118 for 143), 16th. Mighty Ducks - Power play: 15.4 percent (31 for 201), 20th. Penalty killing: 83.3 percent (185 for 222), 10th.

GOALTENDERS: Sharks - Evgeni Nabokov (7-7-4, 0 SO, 2.99 GAA); Vesa Toskala (2-4-0, 4.47). Mighty Ducks - Giguere (8-4-6, 2.66); Ilya Bryzgalov (6-9-0, 2.51).

SEASON SERIES: Sharks, 1-0.

LAST MEETING: Nov. 4, Sharks, 1-0, OT. At Anaheim, Calif., Marcel Goc scored a power-play goal 51 seconds into overtime and Nolan Schaefer made 21 saves for his first NHL shutout.

ROAD/HOME RECORDS: Sharks - 6-9-2 on the road; Mighty Ducks - 11-6-3 at home.

Associated Press
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