The San Jose Sharks (12-10-6) fell to the Pacific Division leading Anaheim Ducks (21-3-4) by the final of 5-3. The Sharks tried to mount a come back after being down three goals but were unable to complete it with the Ducks holding on to win.
It was another rough loss for the Sharks who have lost two of three to division rivals and continue to barely stay afloat in the conference. On the plus side the Brent Burns experiment is paying off and has energized the offense somewhat.
Also, the emergence of Matt Irwin has been nice to see with the rookie continuing his development on the blue-line. His productiveness from the back end is probably what is enabling the coaching staff to keep Burns up on the front lines for now, but we will see how much longer that continues.
In the first period San Jose came out strong but were not able to get a goal with even with a great push. The team obviously responded well to what head coach Todd McClellelan said in his post-game conference against the Los Angeles Kings as well as the hard practice they were put through in between games. Unfortunately for San Jose the Ducks scored first when Francois Beauchemin scored on a slap shot to give them the lead.
Later on, with less than a minute less in the period, San Jose scored on a slap shot from Jason Demers from the blue line to tie the game at one apiece.
In the second period things went bad quickly for the Sharks who allowed three more goals in a span of three minutes including a short-handed goal by leading scorer Ryan Getzlaf on a two-on-one break.
They also continued their tradition of allowing people to score their first career goals against the team with Emerson Etem scoring on a great feed from former Sharks Daniel Winnick.
Once again, however, San Jose scored with less than a minute left in the period when Patrick Marleau scored his 15th goal of the season on a feed from Martin Havlat who returned from the injured reserve list today.
In the third period San Jose continued their comeback that was started by defenseman Matt Irwin who scored a goal in his third straight game with teammate and recent forward Brent Burns getting his sixth point in four games at the position. The game was then 4-3 and the Sharks still had 10+ minutes left to score one more.
Unfortunately that was all the Sharks could muster because with less than a minute left in the game Anaheim put the nail in the coffin when Beauchemin scored an empty netter. In the end the Sharks dug too much of a hole for themselves and were unable to dig out of it.
My 3 Stars
1. Francois Beahchemin (2 goals)
2. Ryan Getzlaf (1 goal, 1 assist)
3. Emerson Eten (1 goal, 1 assist)