It was a tough ending for San Jose as for the second straight game, a shootout decided the winner. And it wasn’t the men in teal. This time it was a six-round one-on-one display that awarded the game’s extra point to the opposition.
Even while finding one point, the Sharks were not accepting of the loss.
“I don’t think so,” Boyle said about being satisfied with gaining one point. “We’re at a point in our season now where a point is not good enough. The team that we saw tonight is not the same team we’ve seen the last little while. There was an extra gear we didn’t get to.”
Just as they did in the Vancouver battle, San Jose grew stronger as the game went on, but could not manufacture the game-winning goal.
“It’s frustrating, we played well in the third,” Eager said. “We have to bear down and capitalize on some of our chances. We have to find a way to put them in the back of the net.”
“We had our chances, but you have to bury them,” Boyle said. “You never know if that point is going to be huge down the road, so hopefully that point doesn’t cost us. We have to learn to put teams away early on.”
Boyle returned to action and his 22:24 of ice time was second among the blueliners behind Marc-Edouard Vlasic
. It may have been less than his normal ice time, but it showed Boyle was ready for all situations.
“It was a huge test,” Boyle said. “It went really well. I didn’t get hit too many times and wasn’t put in too many uncomfortable positions.”’
Surprisingly, Boyle was a bit antsy about his return.
“I was nervous the first period and a half,” Boyle said. “Really the first two periods (I had) butterflies. I’ve played some pretty important games, but I was really nervous out there. I started calming down in the third period.”
Todd McLellan dressed seven defensemen for the contest.
GOOD HANDS GOAL
Ben Eager had the Sharks tying goal that secured a point and he worked his magic redirecting a point shot from Torrey Mitchell
“Mitchy made a great play to get it to the front of the net and it just went off my stick,” Eager said. “I’ll take it.”
In addition to scoring, Eager was doing plenty of other things right and earned additional ice time for his play.
“I got a good opportunity tonight and I tried to make the most of it,” Eager said.
San Jose was set to depart Sunday morning for a two game jaunt to Chicago and Dallas.
“We’ve got two huge games on the road coming up,” Boyle said.
POTENTIAL HAT TRICK
With a goal and a fight, Eager was short an assist of a coveted Gordie Howe hat trick.
“That would have been nice, but it would have been nice to get the win,” Eager said.
KEEP SCORINGRyane Clowe
scored a goal and now has eight goals (8-1=9) and two shootout winners in the last 11 games.
SHARKS HEAD COACH TODD MCLELLAN
“They’re professionals. They get in that situation (the shootout) the guys want to be out there. It’s exciting, I can feel their eyes saying ‘pick me, pick me’. You know (Lundqvist) is obviously one of the best in that situation. Our guys are going in there without much left and maybe he’s baiting them with the five-hole.”
“It’s a little bit frustrating because I thought we played a hell of a third period. Two nights in a row where we only come away with one. I said it the other day. It’s a hard thing at this time of the year to play a hard fought team game and have it settled with individuals. But it’s a part of the game and a way to break the tie and the fans love it.”
RANGERS HEAD COACH TORTORELLA
“I think we salvaged a trip. I thought in the first couple periods we were really good. They put us on heels in the 3rd period where Hank played really strong for us and right on through the overtime and in the shootout. ”
“The biggest key for us is that we wanted to play the right way and I thought for most of the minutes we did.”
“I thought in the first two periods we handled the surges pretty well and that’s very important and it’s a tough building to play in.”
The Sharks will visit Chicago on Monday and the game 5 p.m. game will be on VERSUS, 98.5/102.1 KFOX and www.sjsharks.com.