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Game Preview/Lines #34: Donato Has Boyhood Picture with Marleau, Boughner Defends Gabriel

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Credit: Sheng Peng

San Jose Sharks (13-16-4)

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Where to Watch

Puck drop is 7:30 PM PT at SAP Center. Watch it on NBC Sports Bay Area, FOX Sports North, or NHL.tv.

Morning Skate

Bob Boughner didn’t think Kurtis Gabriel deserved an ejection or a five-minute major after this hit on Johan Larsson on Saturday.

Two days later, Boughner re-affirmed his opinion. For what it’s worth, NHL Player Safety did not pursue further discipline on Gabriel.

“I think the league got it right. To me, it’s just a shoulder-to-shoulder hit, albeit maybe it’s a little late. It’s a two-minute penalty, I get that, no argument here,” Boughner said. “But again, to throw a guy out, give him a five-minute major for a shoulder-to-shoulder hit, I thought that was a little carried away. But not surprising.”

Good news, Larsson returned to practice this afternoon:

However, Gabriel will not be playing tonight. Instead, Jeffrey Viel will be making his NHL debut:

At the other end of the spectrum, 41-year-old Patrick Marleau will be playing in his 1,757th regular season contest, passing Mark Messier for second on the All-Time Games Played list.

Scouts Talk Marleau’s Trade Value | SJHN+

This is the first season that 24-year-old Ryan Donato has played with Marleau. What’s the biggest thing that he’s noticed about the tireless veteran?

“The biggest thing I’ve learned is he’s happy to come to the rink every day. You can truly tell that he loves the game,” Donato said. “He brings a positive energy to the rink every day. He’s excited to work. I think that’s why he’s had such a long career.”

Marleau has played so long, he played against Ryan Donato’s dad, Ted Donato.

Ryan Donato revealed that he met Marleau long before they became teammates.

“I had a picture with him when I was a little kid. I think he was in Boston,” Donato said. “I met him pregame or postgame in the elevator. And my dad was [telling me], that’s Patrick Marleau. And I was just staring up at him. That’s basically my favorite memory of him.”

Wait, Donato has another picture of himself as a youngster with a San Jose Sharks legend?

San Jose Hockey Now urged Donato to share his Marleau pic with the world.

“If I find it,” he laughed, “I will.”

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