SAN JOSE, Calif. - Aaron Ward knows full well that the city of Boston is preoccupied with other major sports.
Ward scored with 12 seconds left, just moments after San Jose had tied the game, and the Bruins ruined the Sharks' home opener with a 2-1 victory Saturday night.
The Bruins have a few days to savor a 3-2 season-opening road trip on the west coast before their home opener on Thursday. Ward just hopes Boston will pay some attention to the suddenly vibrant Bruins.
"We're going to struggle for attention," Ward said. "Right now we're the stepchild of the four sports in Boston. This was a good, ugly road win and what we need at home is another good, ugly road win."
The Red Sox will be in Cleveland for game five on the Bruins' opener, and the Patriots will be on the road that weekend. The Celtics won't be playing either so perhaps the Bruins will get lucky.
They certainly did with the game winner.
Patrice Bergeron, who scored Boston's first goal, won the puck in the corner and flipped it to Marco Sturm, who cleared it to the top of the right faceoff circle, where Ward shot it past a startled Evgeni Nabokov.
"I'll take them any way they come," Ward said. "I think we caught them by surprise. We just got lucky."
Not even a pre-game power outage, which delayed the start of the game for 25 minutes, seemed to affect the Bruins early. They were the aggressors early, outshooting San Jose 12-4 in the first period.
Bergeron scored from in front of the net with 3:37 remaining in the first period. Sturm's shot bounced off Nabokov's pads and Bergeron was there for the rebound.
"It's the home opener with all the pomp and circumstance that go with it," Sharks coach Ron Wilson said. "You get all fired up and then it's not there. We don't even get the national anthem. We just go out and play. It was weird."
Tim Thomas recorded 26 saves to help the Bruins win in San Jose for the first time in eight years.
Thomas, appearing in his third game of the season, nearly recorded his fifth career shutout until Milan Michalek scored with 38 seconds left in the third period.
"It's early but this is a good sign," Thomas said.
The Sharks pulled Nabokov in the final minute and the move paid off. Joe Thornton rescued the puck behind the net and delivered a pass to Michalek's stick at the top of the crease for the tying goal.
San Jose produced enough offence, but couldn't find the net until the final frantic seconds. Michalek hit the post during the second period, and three Sharks' shots glanced off metal during the final seven minutes. Marcel Goc had an open net, but flipped the puck off the post.
"We hit four or five posts and played hard for two periods," Nabokov said. "We did everything we should but we didn't win the game.
Notes: Sharks C Jeremy Roenick was scratched after he suffered a slight knee injury against Chicago. ... The Bruins were outshot 13-0 in the second period. ... Bruins RW Glen Murray recorded his 15th career assist against the Sharks. ... Boston D Chara Zdeno is the third Slovakian born captain in NHL history, joining Peter Stastny and Stan Mikita.