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Game Notes #16: Sharks Snatch Victory from Jaws of Defeat, Beat Blues 5-4



Credit: NBCS Bay Area

First Period

4 minutes in, Knyzhov does nice job on end-of-shift Kyrou, gets inside, takes it away, skates behind net and moves it.

Labanc! Sanford thinks he’s about to exit, Labanc stick, goes back to Kane. Insistent forecheck from Labanc. Looks like Sanford pass hit Labanc’s skate, but that’s still Labanc making himself big, putting himself in good forecheck position.

Great job by Dunn with 9 minutes left, doesn’t allow Balcers to get his stick down on loose puck in front.

Until that last seam pass got through (not necessarily on him, have to watch again), Burns was having a phenomenal PK shift.

3 minutes left though, Marleau on forecheck makes a tired Dunn look slow, almost forces a turnover and good chance. Great pressure from 41-year-old.

Sanford soft on puck again with minutes left, Kane just eats up his gift on forecheck. Sanford’s a guy that I figure might get a talking to from a St. Louis coach between periods.

Eye test was San Jose did much better job of getting inside than St. Louis. Blues were perimeter. Natural Stat Trick agrees, San Jose Sharks 7-2 Scoring Chances, 3-1 High-Danger at 5-on-5. Blues have 15-12 Corsi edge.

Hertl tied with Perron, per SPORTLOGiQ, in OZ Time of Possession at 00:22. Hertl doing a good job down low of warding off Blues.

Second Period

First shift, Labanc on it on forecheck, takes it from Faulk. Good start.

2 minutes in, Blues pass into slot, looks dangerous, Sharks have everyone covered.

3 minutes in, Gregor can’t lose it on center-ice rush there. That’s kind of turnover that drives coaches crazy.

Meier with the faceoff win on Balcers goal. Gotta give Balcers credit; I haven’t loved his play, but if he produces, executes that skill, there’s a place for him in line-up.

Schenn goal: Boughner wanted Vlasic to be more aggressive on attackers on perimeter. Vlasic did that, as Heidcan noted, maybe should’ve double-checked if Marleau was going to cover Schenn, but Marleau has to be quicker too. I’m obviously not a former NHL defenseman, but it seems like Vlasic was doing what Boughner wants, Marleau needs to read play faster.

After fanning on one-timer, Marleau hangs around, Dunn loses him, Kane finds Marleau. Berube can’t be happy with St. Louis attention to detail tonight. Good for Patty, he deserved a gimme.

Agree with Hedican here: Vlasic has to beat Sanford to puck or at least tie Blues player up. Sanford has had a wild game. Regarding Vlasic, that’s a place where I don’t believe it’s desire or anything. It’s just the former world-class defenseman doesn’t have that extra pop in his step that he needs, that thin line between mediocre and good.

Going back to what Boughner wants from Vlasic, jumping check more, that’s not Vlasic’s game, but I think it’s a reflection of head coach recognizing what a star player needs to modify in his game to remain effective — before the player recognizes it. May be happening to Karlsson too.

10 minutes left, that’s a momentum-changing save by Dubnyk. Can’t-happen Labanc neutral zone turnover, Perron finds late man Faulk.

5 minutes left, good energy by Hertl at end of minute-plus shift to get it out. San Joe Sharks absolutely needed it, Balcers in particular looked gassed.

2 minutes left, not a great behind-the-back pass from Knyzhov to Leonard on wall. Knyzhov needs awareness that Leonard about to get swallowed up by forecheck. Leonard could do better job of going to get it too.

Kyrou is good, but that’s a one-on-one save you need from Dubnyk. Not a great pinch by Burns, but there were enough people back. Not well sorted out between Meier and Ferraro.

Well, that’s ironic. Refs miss Gunnarsson high stick on Meier, see Meier high stick Krug.

2 goals against in 3:11, the trend continues. Can’t get stops, be it from defense or goaltending, when it counts. Anatomy of a collapse: Not just on goals against, but small plays that lose momentum, like aforementioned Labanc and Knyzhov turnovers. Good news is, one period, still tied, time to redeem yourself.

Third Period

5 minutes in, quiet period for both sides, probably good for Sharks after being burned at end of 2nd. Maybe tentative too though: This isn’t a confident San Jose Sharks team right now.

That’s fair: Knyzhov needs to get feet moving, but that was a hard, LeBron-worthy embellishment there. Could’ve been a lone penalty to Hoffman.

Maybe an angry Meier is good: He was all over puck on that Couture goal.

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