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The Official Site of the San Jose Sharks

Game 4 Blog

by San Jose Sharks Staff / San Jose Sharks

Character time for the Sharks. There's nothing else that can be said. Every remaining game, starting Saturday night in San Jose, will be an elimination game. San Jose also has the unenviable task of having to win three straight. Yup, the "H" in hockey stands for HARD. Who's going to be the one to make a difference starting Saturday? Really, someone, anyone, has to be the one to make a difference.

Final thought: like the win on Tuesday, you have to forget about tonight's game quickly. Postseason memories must be short. Keep your fingers crossed. Do something.


There are some bright spots for the Sharks...Milan Michalek has four blocked shots...We've already talked about Goc and his faceoff wins...Travis Moen has five hits.


Oh boy...oh boy...See what happens when you put the puck on the net. Ryan Getzlaf's shot benefits Corey Perry, who has picked up his game as the night has progressed. Anaheim's No. 1 line has lived up to its status tonight.


One interesting Sharks performance of note: Marcel Goc, who has won six of his seven faceoffs.


Apologies for the long delay. We had some technical difficulties.

A few quick points:

Bobby Ryan definitely earned his Calder Memorial Trophy nomination. His second goal was the perfect example of being in the right place at the right time.

Jonas Hiller has been good tonight. And to think this guy hadn't played in a Stanley Cup Playoff game until this year.

Sharks are off to a good start this period with a 9-2 shot differential. They need to play desperate.


Who's going to benefit or lose from this delay? Anaheim with the momentum? San Jose who needs to get some? We shall find out soon...


Corey Perry is MIA, but Ryan Getzlaf and Bobby Ryan are shining. Getzlaf has three shots and won nearly 80 percent of his faceoffs. Ryan has three shots and a goal. Shots are even at 12. JR and Milan Michalek each have two shots to pace The Lads. Got to do something here...


Bobby Ryan earned his Calder doubt. The Lads aren't creating enough traffic in front of Hiller.


Do you get the feeling it's going to be either a low-scoring game...or a long night?


A few questions:how will the intensity level be for both sides in the next 20 minutes? Will San Jose get more traffic in front of the net? We shall soon see.


One word to describe the first 20 minutes: close. Shots were close to even (10-8, SJ), faceoffs (60-40, SJ) and hits (12-11, Quackers). Sharks did have seven blocked shots. Take a deep breath. We'll be back.


Two bullets dodged...Phew! One noticeable thing: the intensity level on both sides isn't at energy drink pitch right now. Not a surprise, actually. After all, these guys are human beings. How much do you want to make a bet that the juices will get going when someone scores the first goal?


Dodged a bullet with Pavelski's Setoguchi is in the box...hmmm...


Pretty even so far...Sharks have an edge in faceoffs. Again...kudos to Griersie for his stickless play...

10:19 IN FIRST

Grier playing without a stick during the PK...hmm...shades of what happened a few years ago, if you Sharks fans remember...


The effort seems good early...But Pavs getting hit for the trip doesn't help. We'll see what happens. We won't comment on the call, by the way...

7:25 P.M. -- UPDATE

Now are you getting nervous? We didn't mention the waiting aspect in our initial blog today. But now that we've got about 15 minutes before the puck drops, NOW THE NERVES START GOING. If you're were watching the pregame on CSN Bay Area, look who's in the middle? Mark Smith! Smitty!

7:00 P.M. -- UPDATE
Could this be a hint of things to come? The Worcester Sharks, San Jose's AHL affiliate, beat Hartford (N.Y. Rangers), 3-1, to take a 3-2 lead in their Calder Cup Playoff series. What makes this victory sweeter is that the Sharkies grabbed this one at the Wolf Pack den. All of Worcester's goals came in the first period -- two by Patrick Traverse. We're happy for Roy Sommer and his crew. Roy is one of the hardest working coaches around.

When we last assembled on Tuesday, this space said to enjoy the Game Three win for just 10 minutes and move on. Hopefully, you’ve done that and you’re ready for Game Four.
If you think we’re full of beans, here’s a postgame statement from right wing and second-year man Devin Setoguchi. “It’s good to get the win, but you can never get too high or too low in the playoffs. Enjoy tonight, come tomorrow to practice and get ready again for Thursday.” One immediate observation: this 22-year-old sounds wise beyond his years.
But while we must forget Tuesday’s game, there were a few things one can take from it…
Coach Todd McLellan said after Tuesday’s game that the first period play was the best he’s seen “in a long time.” Definitely. The Lads followed through on one of the points mentioned on Tuesday: score first. And as mentioned frequently during the game, the energy was fantastic. Obviously, this has to continue tonight.
One can say the Sharks played “desperation hockey” on Tuesday. Okay, we’re just into Game Three and maybe some would say it was too early to be in that mode, but the Sharks were down 2-0 already and having to play in enemy territory.
Another telling quote about the team’s attitude came from Setoguchi. “Joe (Thornton) and Patty (Marleau) and J.R. (Roenick) came in and said it’s do or die for us and we don’t want to go down 3-0 in the series.”
Time for some random thoughts:
QUACKLESS: Corey Perry was silenced on Tuesday (no shots). No. 10 was having a bad night anyway. His hooking penalty on Dan Boyle at 9:07 of the third led to the game-winning goal by Marleau. “I take full responsibility for that one,” Perry said. “It’s not the best time to take that penalty.” Okay, send him a fruit basket to thank him for his generosity and error in judgment. Bobby Ryan did have seven shots and a goal, but Ryan Getzlaf was held to just three and only won 33 percent of his faceoffs.  
THE WATER IS BOYLEING: Are you still buzzing over Boyle’s night? One fan told me that Boyler has just become her favorite Shark. How can you not like Boyler? He’s 5-foot-11 and 190 pounds. You can arguably say he’s a small fish in the big pond (hey, plenty of forwards are 6-foot and over, you know). He made the NHL as an undrafted free agent. He’s worked hard for everything he’s received. He’s also got good hockey sense. He’s not afraid to pinch, which is something some opposing forwards haven’t picked up on. Example: Erik Christensen, who was looking at his own net, failed to cover Boyle when he came in from behind to get the loose puck in the slot and scored his second goal.
Boyle has been available to the microphones and notebooks after every playoff game, win or lose. He’s answered the easy and hard questions. He’s honest (note what he said after Game Two), articulate and personable. Again, how can you not like Boyle?
MITCHY: As much as we like Boyle, how about Torrey Mitchell’s return? That guy worked so hard before training camp and then he fractured his leg in two places during a training camp scrimmage. Then, when he was rehabbing, he reinjured the leg. Yikes, there goes the regular season. Man, that stinks to high heaven. So for Mitchy to get six minutes on Tuesday was huge.
WHO’S THAT LADY: Did you hear that woman during Dan Rusanowsky’s radio broadcast screaming like she won the California Lottery after Patrick Marleau scored the game-winning goal? KCBS Morning Drive News Anchor Stan Bunger asked Sports Director Steve Bitker Wednesday who that was after Bitker played the play-by-play clip during his 6:15 a.m. sports report. His response, tongue-in-cheek (we think): “Mrs. Rusanowsky.” Of course, we asked Dan the Man if that was his significant other. He said, “I’m not sure, but it was someone near the booth.”
PATTY AND SPECIAL TEAMS: Are back! Some will say Marleau’s goal wasn’t a work of art. So what? When you take a look at the scoresheet in a decade, you’ll see that Marleau scored the game-winning goal in Game Three of the 2009 Western Conference Quarterfinal series vs. Anaheim. Whenever the puck goes into the net, there are no style points awarded. It’s all about scoring goals. And no doubt, it was good to see El Capitan get one on the board. Two power play goals on Tuesday make up for none in the first two games. If the Ducks take more unnecessary penalties, San Jose will get more chances. “You can make winning so much easier if you stay out of the penalty box,” ex-Sharks forward Teemu Selanne said. But did you notice how San Jose put on the full-ice press as Anaheim tried to carry the puck into the San Jose zone during their man-advantage chances? Anaheim looked like sitting ducks (ugh, that was bad). Somehow, you got the feeling Anaheim didn’t expect San Jose to put that much pressure.
RUSH HOUR, HOCKEY STYLE: One recurring theme during Tuesday’s game and in the games played last night was seeing opposing teams put bodies in front of goaltenders to get rebounds, set up screens for shots from the point and making life miserable for the netminder. San Jose did a great job of that on Tuesday (Marleau’s goal). They need to do that again to Jonas Hiller.
Last, but not least, must we say that the Sharks need to win tonight?  
That’s it for now. Game On soon. We’ll talk to you later.
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