The San Jose Sharks (21-8-6, 48 points) fell to the Los Angeles Kings (24-8-4, 52 points) by the final score of 4-1 at the Staples Center. It was another tough game against the Kings in their own building and once again were too much too handle.
This evening the Sharks ran into one of the hottest goaltenders in the league in rookie Martin Jones. The win makes him 7-0-0 this season while the Kings defense in front of him has been just as good and is probably the main reason for Jones’ incredible hot streak.
As stated earlier, it was the usual tough game at Staples with the Kings playing physical, although at certain points to a fault. One of those instances came late in the first period Los Angeles captain Dustin Brown was given a five-minute major and a game misconduct for a knee-on-knee collision with Tomas Hertl.
Unfortunately, when the Sharks pulled Antti Niemi for the extra skater, Brent Burns was called for goaltender interference that negated a goal and was called for a penalty so that five-minute major turned into a 3-minute major which San Jose started out the second period with. Tomas Hertl never returned to the game.
However, rather than the Sharks picking up momentum after that it was Los Angeles who had a bit of a jump in their step and scored the first goal of the game shortly after the penalty kill. The goal was scored by Alec Martinez on a knuckling puck that looked to have fooled Niemi after it deflected off of his teammate Joe Pavelski.
After that the floodgates seemed to open as the Kings would score three more times on goals by Tyler Toffoli, Jeff Carter, and Dwight King. The two latter ones, which came in the third period, all but sealed the deal for Los Angeles.
The only saving grace for the Sharks this evening was that they were able to break the shutout on a Patrick Marleau goal with just about two minutes left in the game to break the shutout. He started the rush by driving the puck into the zone, was dispossessed, then regained his composure in time to receive a short pass from Martin Havlat and one-timed the puck past Jones.
Other than that though the Sharks had a rough time trying to score all night even though they had a few golden opportunities. One came where Tommy Wingels had a wide open net on a wrap around chance where he put the puck off the post before he cleared it and instead trickled the puck into Jones’ pads. They even had their chances on the power play but that was not great once again and went 0-4. Also, the Sharks actually outhit the Kings, something which never happens.
In all it was a tough loss to a division rival, but as is usual they need to have forget about the loss and move on to their next opponent, the Dallas Stars, on Saturday the 21st.
GGS 3 Stars
1. Martin Jones (32 saves)
2. Dwight King (1 goal, 1 assist)
3. Tyler Toffoli (1 goal, 1 assist)