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Second Period Hurts Sharks

by San Jose Sharks Staff / San Jose Sharks

In any sport, getting off to a strong start is essential to victory.

The San Jose Sharks were strong from the beginning of Game One of their Western Conference Quarterfinal series against Colorado. They had six shots on goal within the first two-plus minutes.

But for the next 38 minutes, San Jose could only get nine shots on Avalanche goaltender Craig Anderson. San Jose’s inability to get more shots on Anderson, and a little bad luck, negated San Jose’s strong start.

Colorado had plenty of success in stopping the Sharks, whose 264 goals scored during the regular season was fourth in the National Hockey League.

“They did a good job of clogging up the neutral zone,” Coach Todd McLellan said. And Colorado’s aggressive defense in the middle of the ice caused other problems.

“Our passing was a little bit off,” McLellan said. “It slowed our game down a lot.”

“We didn’t have enough offensive zone time tonight,” forward Ryane Clowe said.

Defenseman Rob Blake agreed. “We didn’t come through that neutral zone clean at all in the second period,” he said. “They bottled it up. We didn’t have enough zone time until probably the third period.

“We made an adjustment in the third (period), but we needed that in the second,” Blake added.

“If we eliminate that 20 minutes and play the way we did in the first and third, we would’ve given us an opportunity to be more successful,” McLellan said.

So one can imagine what the Sharks will be working on by reviewing video and doing some things on the ice Thursday morning.

“We need some speed from the sides. We need to go up the wall,” Blake said in trying to solve Colorado’s neutral zone clog. “The fact that we didn’t have that zone time early in the game is something we need to work on.”

“We’ve got to get pucks to the net,” Clowe said. “We have to be sharper. We have to get pucks to the net quick. We just have to keep going.”

And one other thing. “We know we can play better,” Blake said.

OPENING FACEOFF
Todd McLellan always pushes faceoff importance as it’s the first battle of every play and Joe Pavelski showed it on the opening draw by going to the ice to win it.

SHARKS HEAD COACH TODD MCLELLAN
“They didn’t do much different in the second period than they did in the first. I thought it was more our inability to execute very well. Our passing was a little bit off. Whether it was a pass or a failure to convert, the result was it slowed our game down a lot. They did a really good job of clogging up the neutral zone.”

COLORADO HEAD COACH JOE SACCO
“It’s a big win and we are excited. I thought our guys played with a lot of passion and a lot of energy. It’s a big win to start the series but there is a lot of work left to do.”

“The first game is an important game. We are the eight seed and they are the one seed. Not a lot of people are giving us a chance in this series, so the pressure is on them. ”

“Even after they tied the game, I liked our composure. For such a young team I thought we did a really good job on staying composed, and we stuck to the game plan.”

OPENING FACEOFF
Todd McLellan always pushes faceoffs being the first battle of every play and Joe Pavelski showed it on the opening draw by going to the ice to win it.

LINES
Clowe-Pavelski-Setoguchi
Marleau-Thornton-Heatley
Mitchell-Couture-Malhotra
McGinn-Nichol-Demers

Murray-Boyle
Vlasic-Blake
Huskins-Wallin

Nabokov-Greiss

NEXT GAME
The Sharks will host Colorado in Game 2 Friday at 7:30 and tickets will be released at 1 p.m. on game day via the HP Pavilion Ticket Office and sjsharks.com.





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