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The Official Site of the San Jose Sharks

Live Blog Game 4

by San Jose Sharks Staff / San Jose Sharks

Blackhawks-4, Sharks-2
Chicago wins series 4-0

Three stars
1. Byfuglien (GW Goal)
2. Bolland (Goal)
3. Niemi (16 Saves)


20:00 It's over and the Blackhawks win it 4-2 moving on to the Stanley Cup Finals.  Chicago oushot the Sharks 9-3 in the third and 27-18 for the game; first time in this series the Sharks were outshot in a game.  San Jose ends up winning 51% of the face-offs and outhit the Hawks 35-33.

19:18 Versteeg flips a backhander in an empty net after a Sharks face-off win in the Chicago zone.  San Jose could not keep it in the zone after a chip toward the middle by Seabrook and Versteeg kicked it ahead to himself and put it in from center.
CHI EN GOAL: Versteeg (4)  A: Unassisted  at 19:18

18:15 Bolland on a rush hits the post looking for some insurance.

16:45 Niemi with a big glove save off a slapshot from Murray at the right point from a drop pass by Boyle.

14:05 With :07 left in the power play, Byfuglien redirects a Kane pass through the five-hole to give the Blackhawks their first lead.  Kane was in the left corner and fed Byfuglien planted the left side of the crease for the redirection.  Toews has tallied a point in 13 straight games and Byfuglien has scored in each of the four games in this series.  Shame for the Sharks because it was toward the end of the penalty kill of a marginal call.
CHI PP GOAL: Byfuglien (8)  A: Kane (13), Toews (19)  at 14:05

13:55 Nabokov has come up huge here in the third and especially on this Chicago power play.  Best save denying Versteeg from the left dot.

12:12 Heatley is called for slashing Kane going after a loose puck in the Chicago zone after a Marleau rush and shot.  Another Chicago power play, their third in a row here in the period; not a strong call.

11:09 After a couple of dicey moments early in the Chicago power play, the Sharks kill off another and keep the game tied at two.

9:09 Clowe is called for holding Toews chasing after a puck on a dump-in in the San Jose zone giving the Hawks their fourth power play.

6:27 Boyle is set free and the Sharks remain perfect on the penalty kill.

6:20 Byfuglien got away with one as after Nabokov caught a shot with the glove and held for a face-off, Byfuglien elbowed Nabokov after the whistle which went unnoticed.  As you could imagine, the Sharks took exception.

4:27 Boyle is called for delay of game after knocking the puck over the glass with his glove in the defensive zone; this came right after Nabby's big stop on Toews.

4:21 Big stop by Nabokov off a drive from Toews at the right dot.

3:00 Key stop by Nabokov off a shot from Eager down low right after a good Chicago cycle from the Madden line.

0:59 Tough break for Setoguchi as he pounced on a loose puck between the circles and let a soft wrister go that deflected off Thornton and off the crossbar before Niemi covered.

0:00 Malhotra, Marleau and Heatley will begin the third for the Sharks with Vlasic and Blake on defense against the Toews line.


20:00 Through two periods it's a two all game after the Sharks jumped out to a 2-0 lead.  The Hawks outshot the Sharks 10-8 in the period and are ahead 18-15 for the game.  Face-offs are about even, a slight edge for Chicago 19-18.  Hits are 29-26 San Jose with Marleau leading the way tallying six hits and Murray totaling five.  Vlasic now leads the Sharks in ice time (16:02), while Seabrook leads the Hawks (17:06).  Each team has blocked 11 shots, for Chicago Seabrook has blocked six.  Makes for an on edge third period and the Sharks fighting to push the series to a Game 5.

18:38 Chicago has tied the game at two.  The Blackhawks on a cycle as Eager sent the puck behind the net, Bolland beat Couture to a loose puck behind Nabokov and carried the out toward the front.  Bolland flipped the puck toward the net from down low left and it bounced off Huskins and passed Nabokov; some bad luck for the Sharks.
CHI GOAL: Bolland (5)  A: Eager (1), Keith (9)  at 18:38

18:00 San Jose is reestablishing their game here after a Chicago surge.

16:00 Keith has returned for Chicago, but is missing four teeth according to the Blackhawks.

14:48 Toews exits the sin bin and we are back to five-on-five.

13:55 Heatley returns to the ice and the Sharks will have a brief power play.

13:15 After a review of a no goal ruling on the ice, they have ruled the puck crossed the line and Chicago is on the board.  Seabrook pinching in from the right point with the teams playing four-on-four, moved the puck in down low and flipped it on net.  Nabokov made the initial stop with the right pad, but Seabrook jammed at the rebound it it barely cleared the line before Murray knocked the puck back under Nabokov.
CHI GOAL: Seabrook (3)  A: Hjalmarsson (4), Versteeg (5)  at 13:15

12:48 With a loose puck on the edge of the San Jose crease, Toews is called for cross-checking Vlasic trying to fight for the puck.  We'll skate four-on-four until Heatley comes out of the box.

11:55 Heatley chasing after a puck with Campbell in the Chicago zone is called for hooking the former Shark and gives the Hawks another power play.

10:00 Keith has not returned so Chicago is now down two men.

8:45 Setoguchi has exited the box and needless to say, a great kill by the Sharks.

7:35 Shorthanded goal for the Sharks on a dramatic swing of events.  A golden opportunity for Kane on a one-timer from the right circle that was blocked by Vlasic with on open net behind the Sharks defenseman.  Next, on a clear attempt and a rolling puck, Marleau fired the puck  and it flew up and hit Keith in the mouth leaving a pool of blood and a few teeth on the ice.  That led to a three-on-two rush for the Sharks and Marleau buried a shot from down low right to put the Sharks up 2-0.  First shorthanded goal for the Sharks in the playoffs and Marleau's fifth goal if the series; he has scored five of the last six San Jose goals.
SJ SH GOAL: Marleau (8)  A: Vlasic (3), Pavelski (8)  at 7:35

6:45 The Blackhawks get their first power play as Kane on a burst through the neutral zone gets tripped at the San Jose blueline by Setoguchi.

4:00 Ladd is still not on the Chicago bench and no word on his return.

3:00 Sharks establshing a good cycle game again here in the second period and controlling the tempo.

0:55 Nabokov with his first big test here in the second as Hossa picked off a Wallin pass in the neutral zone and Hossa carried the puck to left left corner and flipped the shot on net and Nabby steered it aside.

0:00 Malhotra, Heatley and Marleau start the second up front for the Sharks against the Toews line.


20:00 First period ends with the Sharks ahead 1-0.  After the Sharks took six of the first seven shots, the Blackhawks took seven of the last eight and the shots are 8-7 Chicago.  Chicago got their game going by generating some speed and winning some face-offs as th Hawks won six of the last seven to end the period.  Just like the previous three games, the Sharks have been the more physical team so far and outhit the Hawks 16-13, four from Murray and three by Marleau.  Thornton led the Sharks in ice time (8:04), while Keith leads all skaters for the Blackhawks (8:44).  By the way, Bernie Nicholls is signing autographs on the concourse during the intermission.

19:00 Chicago keeping the pressure on Nabokov as Kane's wrist shot from a tough angle down low right caught the outside of the post and Nabby then trickles behind the net.

17:00 Scary sequence as the Hawks controlled the puck for about :30 in the Sharks zone and peppered Nabby with a couple shots; part of the time Nabokov did not have his stick.  It was the Blackhawks top line as Chicago has picked up their play the last couple of minutes.

16:17 Two big stops by Nabokov on a Chicago rush.  The initial shot from Campbell between the circles as the defenseman rushed the puck up the ice; then denied the rebound backhander off Brouwer.

15:20 Hjalmarsson has a skate problem and needs to change his skates on the Chicago bench, he may miss a shift or two.

14:30 Shots are 6-1 San Jose and the Sharks have won 7 of the 12 face-offs.

12:00 Following a check on Marleau, Ladd seemed to get injured and went into the Blackhawks dressing room.

11:08 Sharks strike first!  After a key face-off win in the Chicago zone from Thornton following an icing, the Sharks work a good cycle.  Setoguchi fired a shot near the left half-wall and Couture picked up a rebound along the inside of the left circle and rocketed a turnaround wrist shot top shelf glove side passed Niemi.
SJ GOAL: Couture (4)  A: Setoguchi (4), Murray (6)  at 11:08

10:35 Nabokov with a nice stop on a slapshot by Keith from the left point and the rebound cleared away from Blake.

9:05 The Sharks have taken three of the game's first four shots and the teams have split the six draws.  San Jose has to be happy with the start, they are controlling the pace of play and are asserting their game on the Blackhawks.

7:02 Hendry exits the box and the Blackhawks have killed off the penalty.

6:20 Big save from Niemi and a clear from the Hawks as the Sharks had a good set up in the Chicago zone.  Heatley had the best attempt on a tip from the left edge of the crease.

5:02 Sharks will get the first power play as the Sharks were on a cycle behind Niemi and Hendry was called for holding the stick of Thornton.

3:50 Nabokov's first big test and save as he denied a wrister from Kane from the high slot as the speedy Chicago winger was flying around the San Jose zone.

2:28 Best chance to this point as Thornton carried the puck in and shot a wrister down low left that was gloved by Niemi.

1:38 The teams take a conservative approach to begin Game 4.

0:00 The Sharks will start a line of Malhotra, Marleau and Heatley with Blake and Vlasic on defense, while Chicago will counter with the Toews line with Campbell and Hjalmarsson on the blueline.  San Jose is looking for Malhotra to set the tone in the circle as face-offs were a problem in Game 3 and also starting Marleau who was the best player on the ice Friday.

12:06pm With Todd McLellan dressing seven defenseman and eleven forwards, expect the same jumbled lines from the Sharks that we saw in Game Three.  The mixing and matching by San Jose with the uneven number of forwards can make it difficult for Joel Quenneville to match up with the Sharks despite having the last change here at home.  Quenneville seemed to follow a pattern of matching his defense pair against who was lined up at center for the Sharks, for example if Thornton was on the ice the Blackhawks would put Keith and Seabrook on the ice; expect the same today from Chicago.

Lines: (anticipated)
San Jose:
Patrick Marleau-Joe Thornton-Dany Heatley
Ryane Clowe-Joe Pavelski-Devin Setoguchi
Manny Malhotra-Logan Couture-Torrey Mitchell
Jamie McGinn-Scott Nichol

Dan Boyle-Douglas Murray
Rob Blake-Marc Edouard Vlasic
Niclas Wallin-Kent Huskins
Jason Demers

Scratches: Jay Leach, Dwight Helminen, Brad Staubitz, Jed Ortmeyer, Henrik Karlsson

Dustin Byfuglien-Jonathan Toews-Patrick Kane
Troy Brouwer-Patrick Sharp-Marian Hossa
Kris Versteeg-Dave Bolland-Andrew Ladd
Ben Eager-John Madden-Adam Burish

Duncan Keith-Brent Seabrook
Brian Campbell-Niklas Hjalmarsson
Brent Sopel-Jordan Hendry

Scratches: Kim Johnsson, Colin Fraser, Thomas Kopecky, Nick Boynton, Bryan Bickell

Starting Goalies:
SJ: Evgeni Nabokov   back-up: Thomas Greiss
CHI: Antti Niemi   back-up: Cristobal Huet

11:05am Lines, starting goalies and scratches coming shortly for Game 4 of the Western Conference Finals from the United Center.

Referees:Dan O’Halloran, Tim Peel
Linesman: Steve Miller, Jay Sharrers
Standby:Paul Devorski, Greg Devorski
Video Judge:Dan Hacht
Supervisors:Mike Murphy, Kris King
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