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Notes #37: Octopus Throw Doesn’t Deter Sharks, 3-2 OT Win

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The San Jose Sharks host the Detroit Red Wings in the Sharks’ return to SAP Center after a four-game road trip. Will the Sharks get revenge for the “embarrassing” loss at Little Caesars two weeks ago? San Jose dominated the game, but Alex Nedeljkovic stood tall to get it into OT. Timo Meier and Jeffrey Viel and Logan Couture scored for the Sharks in the 3-2 OT victory.

Period One

Three in: Raska starts his NHL career with a hard bump of Riley Barber in the corner.

Four in: Burns does a nice job kicking an imperfect Meier pass to his feet.

Good, small passes by Karlsson, Dahlen break too aggressive Detroit forecheck, spring Couture and Gregor on early two-on-one.

Seven in: Good awareness by Hill to block Erne centering pass.

Nine in: Hertl kills time on the PK with some nifty puck protection. Big block by Weatherby to end PK.

Nine left: R. Merkley with two good passes in a tight space in his own corner. Patience, confidence, and skill. Then Raska draws a penalty.

Morning PP lines held:

Dahlen got switched net front and in an ensuing race to puck in corner, well, let’s just stay that’s not his forte.

But on next power play, that was all Dahlen with patience, slid backhand pass underneath Seider, Red Wings were slow on backdoor Meier. Dahlen does present a legitimate shot-pass threat on power play.

Two left: Solid pin by Hronek on Meier, forced him to turn it over along wall. Haven’t seen that a lot this year.

Period Two

One in: Hertl makes a great move to get by d-man, can’t believe he didn’t put it in on short side. He’s so hot right now, it seems like he feels like he can score on anything. Later in shift, Vlasic makes a terrific diagonal high-low feed to Meier, one-timer, big save. I’ll always maintain that Vlasic in his prime was an underrated puckmover.

Four in: Two terrific R. Merkley passes. He’s fun to watch with the puck.

Six in: Burns seems to react slow when Bertuzzi has puck high, Wings have down-low two-on-one that Ferraro squelches.

Seven in: I think Veleno gets away with an interference on Cogliano on San Jose Sharks forecheck. Good grind shift from Weatherby line.

Sharks piling up shots, but Detroit just hanging around. Nine in, Couture on rush wheels around at dot, great feed to Dahlen, but nothing doing or Nothing-deljkovic.

Nine left: Loved Barabanov’s drag when everybody expects a pass to Meier. Big save again. Time for PP to come through.

Five left: Raska outmuscles Raymond in the corner. Obviously raw, but he’s good at what he’s good at.

Next shift, liked R. Merkley puckmoving again. Detroit dump-in, Vlasic wins puck battle, Merkley available for subtle but important breakout.

Ferraro penalty, Bertuzzi shakes him off, but starts with a errant Burns touch when San Jose Sharks had a chance to advance puck. And now it’s going to be a five-on-three after Nedeljkovic sells it. That’s a bad call. Okay, ESPN+ says it was legit.

Minute left: Great Karlsson bounce pass to Couture for clear. Execution there is king, down two men: Precise bounce pass right into Couture’s wheelhouse to gun it down. Any imprecision, swarming Red Wings probably win it with their manpower.

Here’s adversity: San Jose Sharks absolutely dominated period, 14-6, nothing to show for it and the Red Wings scored to tie game. Can Sharks stick with the game plan, grind out a win.

Period Three

Gregor gets stonewalled and down the other side, Leddy beats Hill with a softie. That’s a gut punch, Hill and Sharks have to pick themselves up.

And they do just that: What a regroup by Burns. He feints D-to-D then bullets it up the ice to Viel. I think Wings bought it. Then Viel just takes it to the net. “You just have to remain positive, find a way to keep going,” color man Dominic Moore said before Viel goal. It’s as simple and difficult as that.

Five in: Nick Merkley on the forecheck, wins puck. Fantastic.

Eight in: Another fantastic Burns stretch pass to Hertl.

Nine in: Good individual defensive play by Meier up high on point. Sticks it out.

Sharks aren’t just getting shots, they’re getting Grade-A’s. Couture by himself in front, backhand, Nedeljkovic.

OT

Hertl-Meier-Karlsson to start.

 

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Don V

I thought Merkley had a fantastic game. Hope they keep giving him consistent ice time. He doesn’t look out of place at the NHL level right now.

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