Evgeni Nabokov saved 18 of 19 shots and Bill Guerin scored his first, second and third goals as a Shark as San Jose dominated the Chicago Blackhawks on Tuesday night in San Jose.
for video highlights from Tuesday’s game.
The San Jose Sharks looked to grab their ninth point in their last five games when the Chicago Blackhawks came to town.
The red-hot Evgeni Nabokov looked across at Patrick Lalime as his Russian Olympic teammate Nikolai Khabibulin took the night off. Ron Wilson gave Joe Pavelski
the night off to rest and put Mark Bell in his slot against his former club.
San Jose had the game’s first power play, but came up empty. They continued the pressure when even strength play returned and the Sharks stayed the aggressors. Mike Grier set up Curtis Brown in close for one opportunity, but Lalime turned away the redirect.
Lalime wouldn’t be as lucky seven minutes into the first when Bill Guerin struck for his first as a Shark. Beating his defender to a Christian Ehrhoff dump-in, Guerin swiped the puck toward Lalime and beat him between the pads. Following a Steve Bernier shot a minute later, San Jose was outshooting Chicago 12-1.
The offensive press kept coming as Team Teal made it 2-0. This time, Guerin played the role as setup man and found Bell alone in front of the slot. Bell took his time and went upstairs for the tally.
A Cam Barker penalty gave San Jose a power play to close out the first, but they could not add to their 2-0 lead. After 20 minutes, Team Teal was outshooting Chicago 16-2 and both Blackhawks shots were well outside of scoring range.
Early in the second, it appeared as if Chicago was onto their first scoring chance of the night was they created a two-on-one rush. However, a nifty reach by Craig Rivet broke up the play.
When Martin Havlat
put on a mini one-man show, including a breakaway and a wraparound, Nabokov was there to turn him away.
While Chicago began surging on the shot chart early in the second, posting nine shots to the Sharks one, but it was the Sharks second shot that lit the lamp. Skating behind Lalime, Thornton fed Michalek out front and he slapped it short side on the Chicago netminder.
San Jose has two power play opportunities late in the second, but would have to settle for keeping the lead at 3-0 after 40 minutes.
Five minutes into the third, the score moved to 4-0. Jonathan Cheechoo was controlling play, first firing a shot on net and then retrieving the rebound himself. Cheechoo then circled around front and fed Scott Hannan at the point. The British Columbia product fired on net seeing the traffic in front and Thornton tucked in the rebound.
Fisticuffs nearly broke out when Steve Bernier was hauled down from behind by Danny Richmond and only a struggling linesman could keep them apart. On the play, Clowe had already been whistled for interference and Chicago went on the power play.
When even strength play returned, the Sharks jumped back to the attack. Thornton helped propel Grier and Michalek on a two-on-one and they were off to the races. Grier fed Michalek who then drew Lalime over before returning the puck to Grier who fired it in, making it 5-0.
Only a diving Chicago prevented an easy conversion on a following odd-man Sharks rush, but Team Teal would earn a power play on that play and convert for a 6-0 advantage. San Jose would not let the puck leave the zone and finally scored when Marleau dished to Guerin and he stuffed in the wrap-around for his second Sharks tally.
With just 3:30 to go in the game, Martin Lapointe spoiled Nabokov's bid for his fourth shutout in his past five starts, scoring an unassisted goal to make it a 6-1 game.
Not to be done however, the Sharks closed out the game in style. With 17 seconds to play, Marleau made a tape-to-tape feed to Guerin who snuck behind the Chicago defense. Guerin swooped in one-on-one against Lalime, but was hooked on the arm and missed the backhand bid at the hat trick.
However, referee Kerry Fraser deemed that Guerin was clear of his defender and was awarded a penalty shot with just 12.3 seconds remaining. The penalty shot was the first of Guerin's 14-year NHL career. Guerin drove into the zone and whipped a forehand wrist shot through Lalime's five-hole sending the capacity crowd at HP Pavilion into a frenzy. The goal made it 7-1, the final total of the game.
San Jose will travel to Phoenix for a Thursday showdown at 6 p.m. on FSN Bay Area, 98.5 KFOX and sjsharks.com.
|FINAL ||1 ||2 ||3 ||T |
| ||Chicago ||0 ||0 ||1 ||1 |
| ||San Jose ||2 ||1 ||4 ||7 || |
|CHI: ||LAPOINTE, M. (16:30 in 3rd) |
|SJS: ||GUERIN, B. (07:04 in 1st), BELL, M. (10:42 in 1st), MICHALEK, M. (13:11 in 2nd), THORNTON, J. (05:34 in 3rd), GRIER, M. (10:30 in 3rd), GUERIN, B. (PPG, 13:05 in 3rd), GUERIN, B. (19:47 in 3rd) |