Skip to main content


Streaking Sharks douse Flames

by Eric Gilmore /

SAN JOSE -- As they ripped off six straight wins and roared to a 6-0-1 start this season, the San Jose Sharks feasted at even strength, scoring 22 times when skating 5-on-5.

The Sharks' potent power play resurfaced Saturday night, and they used it to beat the Calgary Flames 6-3 at SAP Center.

Joe Pavelski scored a pair of power-play goals and Patrick Marleau scored one as the Sharks made the Flames pay for their parade to the penalty box. San Jose converted three of nine penalty plays, while Calgary went 1-for-6.

"It was huge tonight getting three on the PP," captain Joe Thornton said. "That was huge. especially in the third when they got those two quick goals on us, to come back and respond and get that fifth goal was huge."

The Sharks improved to 7-0-1 and remained the NHL's only team without a loss in regulation. Two nights after the Dallas Stars snapped their season-opening six-game winning streak, the Sharks got back on track, thanks in large part to Pavelski, who tied his career high in points with four and goals with two.

"We came out fast and got going," Pavelski said. "We got the lead and the power play answered at the times we needed it to."

The Flames (3-2-2) lost back-to-back games for the first time this season.

"This is by far the best team we've played, but at the same time this is by far our worst game," Calgary coach Bob Hartley said. "We made some bad decisions ... that cost us some goals. We made some bad decisions when we went to the box for a few unnecessary reasons.

"We had no focus. And when you have no focus in this game, especially playing against a team like this, you don't have a chance to win."

Brent Burns, Scott Hannan and Logan Couture also scored for the Sharks, who took a 4-1 lead into the third period that quickly shrank to 4-3.

Flames rookie Sean Monahan scored a power-play goal in the second period, his team-leading fifth goal of the season. Calgary's Mikael Backlund and Jiri Hudler scored in the third period.

Antti Niemi stopped 16 of 19 shots and earned his 100th victory as a Shark. Calgary's Karri Ramo, making his second start of the season, stopped 30 of 35 shots.

Backlund scored a shorthanded goal at 1:33 of the third, knocking in a rebound after Niemi made a stick save on Lee Stempniak's shot. At 3:56, Monahan hit a trailing Hudler with a cross-ice pass and Hudler scored from the right circle, cutting San Jose's lead to 4-3.

Pavelski gave the Sharks some breathing room at 9:38 with his second power-play goal of the game, redirecting Couture's shot from the point past Ramo. Couture said the goal came off a set play.

"Earlier in that shift off the faceoff Pavs was in the middle of the ice, and I found him for a high tip that he just put wide," Couture said. "We work on that on the power play almost every day, when the puck gets behind the net, out to the side and right back to the top. Pavs was in a great spot. I was just trying to get it there."

Couture scored an empty-netter from far beyond the blue line with 1:22 left to play for the Sharks, who have scored a League-high 39 goals.

Burns gave the Sharks a 1-0 lead 59 seconds into the game, taking a pass in front of the net from Pavelski and beating Ramo from point-blank range. Brad Stuart dumped the puck into Calgary's end, and Pavelski won a battle with Flames defenseman Kris Russell along the left boards, then sent a pass to a wide-open Burns.

"We just come out so strong and heavy," Thornton said. "We jump on teams quick and don't lay off. We have a great comfort level here. We're just ready to go. As soon as the puck drops we're ready to go."

Burns' goal marked the fourth time in eight games that the Sharks have scored a goal in the first minute. Tyler Kennedy scored just nine seconds into the game against Dallas on Thursday. Tomas Hertl needed just 55 seconds to score against Ottawa last Saturday and 46 seconds to score against Phoenix on Oct. 5.

Burns had a great chance to score again less than four minutes later. At 4:21, he was awarded a penalty shot after TJ Brodie slashed him in front of the crease on a breakaway. Burns attacked Ramo at full speed, but his shot went wide left.

Hannan made it 2-0 with 53 seconds left in the first period with his second goal of the season, a shot from the blue line that deflected off of former Shark TJ Galiardi and past Ramo, with Burns screening in front. Burns initially was credited with the goal, but a scoring change was announced late in the second period.

Ramo made his first start since a season-opening 5-4 shootout loss to the Washington Capitals. Joey McDonald started the next five games, going 3-1-1.

"I thought he played very well," Hartley said. "He battled all game long. Apart from when we made it 4-3, he was under siege all game. We probably had as many penalty kills tonight as we had in the last three or four games. We're not that type of team. It's a recipe for disaster."

Ramo had faced the Sharks just one time before Saturday night, while playing for the Tampa Bay Lightning. On Jan. 13, 2009, he gave up seven goals on 42 shots in a 7-1 loss at San Jose. Following that season he spent four seasons with Omsk Avangard of the KHL before signing a two-year contract with Calgary.

"Five goals [allowed], so you can't be happy with that," Ramo said. "They got us early. They're a good team. If we give them chances on the power play, they're going to hurt us, and that's what they did tonight."

Monahan, the sixth player taken in the 2013 NHL Draft, cut the Sharks' lead to 2-1 at 3:01 of the second period. With Tommy Wingels in the penalty box for hooking Lance Bouma, Monahan took a pass in front of the net from Sven Baertschi and ripped a shot past Niemi.

But the Sharks answered with two power-play goals in the second and took a 4-1 lead into the final period.

Pavelski was in front of the crease when he redirected a Marleau pass behind Ramo at 8:37 of the second for his second goal of the season. Stempniak was in the box was in the box for holding Marc-Edouard Vlasic when Pavelski scored.

With Shane O'Brien in the penalty box for high sticking Andrew Desjardins, Pavelski hit Marleau with a cross-ice pass just right of the crease, Marleau beat Ramo with a one-timer at 17:59. Marleau had a two-point night and extended points streak to eight games.

"He played great," Couture said of Pavelski. "Pavs has been good all year."

Flames left wing Mike Cammalleri (hand) has been cleared by doctors to practice and will rejoin the team Sunday in Los Angeles, according to multiple reports. Cammalleri, who has yet to play a game this season, is on injured reserve and is day to day.

Couture wore an "A" on his sweater, filling in for injured alternate captain Dan Boyle.

View More