It was a night of firsts for the Sharks as Ryane Clowe
and Jamie McGinn potted their first goals of the season, while Dany Heatley posted another game-winner at home. Clowe may have scored the shootout winner two nights ago, but his goal Friday actually counted in the books and gave the Sharks a 1-0 lead after 31 previous shots could not cross the line. Team Teal went on to finish of the Colorado Avalanche 3-1.
“It feels good to get that one,” said Clowe. “It took four whacks at it (by the team). I was just thinking get the puck on net. When it came to me I just wanted to swipe at it because I knew he was not in the net.”
The players were again thrilled for the rugged Newfoundland product.
“Patty and the guys on the ice were more excited than I was and that made me feel good,” said Clowe.
“Nobody realizes how hard he’s been working,” said Sharks Head Coach Todd McLellan. “We’re happy for him.”
McGinn’s goal was a bullet as he stepped inside the blueline after receiving a long outlet pass from Patrick Marleau
“I was just trying to be in my position on the power play and Patty did a great job,” said McGinn of his blast that hit the near post and then the far side of the net. “I was flat footed and knew I had to get a shot off quick.”
The goal went to the video goal judge upstairs before the on ice official confirmed the tally following the phone call.
“I haven’t taken a good look at it yet,” said McGinn. “I wasn’t sure it went in right off the bat so I was trying to put in the rebound.”
The goal was an important one as Colorado had just posted a shorthanded tally to pull within one.
“I thought that was an important goal after we gave up the shortie,” said McLellan, mentioning the energy that was evident on the Colorado bench.
When Heatley came to San Jose, he expected tic-tac-toe passes, but he probably wasn’t looking for them from a rookie he’d never heard of. Yet, that is who provided the highlight level helper that Heatley tapped in for the winner.
“I put everything I had into it,” said Jason Demers
of his pass that covered a lot of ice. “I only took a quick look and knew one guy was in front of the net. With a pass like that you don’t think twice about it with our forwards. It will be in the net or the goalie will make an unbelievable save.”
“It was an amazing pass,” said McGinn.
There is a reason Joe Thornton
is among the NHL’s ironmen. He simply will play through about anything. On Friday night an errant puck bloodied the all-star’s mouth, but he was quick to return to action.
“Joe might be missing a leg and he’d still try and play,” said McLellan. “I think he holds his teammates accountable when they are injured and he’s not missing a game because of a tooth.”
The Sharks set a best for 2009-10 with 46 shots on net.
“It felt like we were getting a lot of shots tonight,” said Clowe. “When you’re getting that many shots, you get a lot of confidence.”
The Sharks knew in advance it would not be as easy night as Craig Anderson was a major reason the Colorado Avalanche came in leading the entire NHL in points.
“This team does a lot of fronting and blocking, so we wanted (a lot of shots) at bad angles and tried to get the second or third shot,” said McLellan.
San Jose has not started games as they had liked for much of the year, but on Friday they outshot Colorado 12-5 in the opening 20 minutes.
The Sharks will fly out at 9 a.m. Saturday for their second east coast flight in the past two weeks. They will open in Carolina on Sunday with a 10:30 a.m. contest.
Evgeni Nabokov received a crystal Tiffany piece prior to the opening faceoff in honor of playing in his NHL milestone 500th game. Sharks Vice President and Assistant General Manager Wayne Thomas made the presentation.
With two assists, Patrick Marleau
extended his point streak to seven games. During that span, he has five goals and eight assists for a total of 13 points.
San Jose will visit Carolina on Sunday at 10:30 a.m. in a game that will be available on CSN California, 98.5 KFOX and sjsharks.com.