There were a lot of areas the Sharks could focus on after their 4-2 loss to Toronto. They took a lead into the third. When Toronto took a lead, they were fast for the response. In the end though they suffered a fifth consecutive setback. The Sharks aren’t looking for any moral victories at this point, so anything short of the win is not being taken well.
“We lost. That’s not what we came to the rink to do,” Sharks Head Coach Todd McLellan said. “The wins and losses are ultimately what are important at this time.”
“It was frustrating before tonight,” Dan Boyle
The Sharks scored twice on the evening, but were more disappointed in their defensive play.
“We have been whining about our offense lately, but tonight it was our defense commitment that let us down,” McLellan said.
Boyle put a lot of the blame on himself.
“The last thing I am going to do tonight is look anywhere else but me,” Boyle said. “I had arguably the worst game I’ve had all year. I’m in no position tonight to talk about anyone else. I thought most of the guys played well. I take a lot of pride in what I do out there and tonight I was way off. Sometimes you just need one or two guys to be off to lose a game. I take a lot of responsibility for what happened out there.”
He was mostly upset with himself on Phil Kessel’s goal where he slid to the ice and Kessel was able to score.
“It’s stupid,” Boyle said. “It’s a broken up two-on-one. I was thinking he was going to shoot and the goalie is going to make that save. I can’t go and slide there.”
Regardless of where the blame should or shouldn’t go, McLellan says there is only one way out of the current hole.
“You seem to drop a notch every time you lose a game,” McLellan said. “There are not many teams in the NHL that are going to feel sorry for us. The last group that should feel sorry for themselves is us. The way to get out of it is to continue working, to improve our defensive play, to remain disciplined and to stick together.”
COUTURE KNEED OUT
Maybe the most difficult part of the contest for San Jose was watching Logan Couture
take a knee-on-knee hit that forced him to leave the game. There was no medical update following the contest as the Calder candidate was still being examined.
“We’ll know more tomorrow,” McLellan said of the evaluation. “The hit on Logan, I was disappointed in the call. I don’t think it should have been (just) a minor penalty and it was a dangerous play.”
“You got a guy that doesn’t play against one of our best players and it’s obvious,” Clowe said. “It should have been a game (misconduct). When he first got hit, I didn’t even realize it was Orr until I started going over there.”
No matter the penalty the striped shirts decided on, San Jose was without their leading goal scorer.
“He’s arguably been our best player all year,” Boyle said. “That was a big loss.”
The Sharks would have at least liked to use the man-advantage at that point to create a two-goal lead.
“I think if you’ve got a killer instinct in that situation, you get the power play and you bury them,” Clowe said. “It didn’t happen. We had some chances.”
TIED FOR FIRST
With his two assists Joe Thornton
(10-22=37) is now tied for the team lead in points with Dany Heatley (15-22=37).
With the victory Toronto Head Coach Ron Wilson (former Sharks Head Coach) recorded his 600th victory. This ranks him first among active NHL Coaches.
TORONTO HEAD COACH RON WILSON
“It’s pretty special (on getting 600th win) because only six other guys have done it. You don’t see it very often. And one of the best things is that we managed to find a way to do it here.”
“We are facing adversity, not getting much sleep. We have to win all these games.”
“It’s a great month. I’ve got this, my 1300th game, and then dad inducted into American Hall of Fame.”
“I get credit for 600 wins but I’ve had great (assistant) coaches.”
San Jose will be right back in action Thursday against Edmonton and the 7:30 p.m. start will be on CSN California, 98.5 KFOX and www.sjsharks.com. Tickets can be found at the HP Pavilion Ticket Office and at www.ticketmaster.com.