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Postgame Notes #49: Balcers Stars, Sharks Edge Coyotes 4-2



Credit: Sheng Peng

Period 1

Kane goal: That’s execution by Barabanov. His breakout pass to Hertl is deflected, but not enough by a Coyote. Then, he slips past Arizona defense, lures in Coyotes, and connects with a wide-open Kane. Great patience by Hertl too, finding Barabanov. Looks like Christian Dvorak overreacted to the Hertl pass, puck watching instead of staying with Kane.

7 in: Skill patience, vision, then execution by Barabanov to hit Burns across the ice.

Labanc goal: In a comical pairing of perhaps San Jose’s slowest skater, Alex True, and their fastest, Noah Gregor, the duo does fantastic work. True sends a puck down the ice, Gregor blows by Goligoski to negate the icing. Then Gregor circles behind net, hits True who steaming up the ice. Good work by True to follow up on his own shot, find Labanc for the gimme.

3 left: Barbanov consistently putting puck in right place. Couple examples of that on that shift. Small execution plays that keep the attack going.

2 left: Pasichnuk takes the high sticking, but he looks like he has NHL strength. Explodes to beat Bunting to loose puck behind Korenar, then seems to wall him off from point shot.

Shot counter a little lopsided, Arizona 13-8, but it’s 8 all 5-on-5.

Period 2

1 in: Good burst by Couture on forecheck of Ekman-Larsson. Feels like we haven’t seen that a lot recently. Maybe  getting healthier?

2 in: Blichfeld can’t explode through Goligoski chasing dump-in. Feels like he still needs to work on his strength — his feet, unlike say Gregor, aren’t enough for this league. So he needs to get stronger.

3 in: Under pressure, Barbanov again puts the puck in a place that his teammate can do something with it.

Larsson goal: But then, it looks like Barabanov loses the point man Hjalmarsson walking down the slot.

7 in: On PP, his shot blocked, impeded by shot blocker, Barabanov finds a way to get it back to Burns. Puck seems to be on his stick like a magnet.

7 left: Barabanov pass on entry…intercepted. Need to stop production on my BaraGODov shirts.

6 left: Dangerous D-to-D pass by Knyzhov to Karlsson, not great awareness that there was a forechecking Coyote about to pounce on Karlsson.

5 left: Nice patience by Vlasic with puck, a couple forecheckers near him. Feel like I’ve seen a slight uptick in his play recently. Slight.

Coyotes felt like they had the better 5-on-5 period, but Natural Stat Trick does say SJS 9-8 Chances, 3-2 High-Danger. We’ll see how the San Jose Sharks respond, whatever they’re playing for.

Period 3

7 in: Back-to-back positive step-ups by Burns in neutral zone. Good plays there.

Barabanov has left flank spot opposite Karlsson on San Jose Sharks PP1. Kane high slot, Hertl net front, Burns up top.

Blichfeld has his feet taken out from under him near boards by Demers. The former San Jose Sharks d-man — “You fucking traitor!” a fan shouts below me — has been in the middle of some shady stuff tonight.

9 left: Back-to-back poor passes by Kane on PP, just passes to covered guys.

6 left: Good work by Blichfeld to help out stressed Ferraro there in d-zone.

3 left: Ekman-Larsson loses puck in unforced error, Balcers snaps it up, draw penalty. Boy, has OEL fallen off.

2 left: Again, on PP entry, Barabanov puts it where it’s easy for Hertl to skate into.

Happy Korenar: On Hertl ENG, I can see him celebrate demonstratively on other side.

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