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Sharks Locker Room: Ferraro Talks ‘Positive’ Team Dinner, Granlund Breaks Down GWG Assist

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MONTREAL – The San Jose Sharks are 1-0.

That was head coach David Quinn’s declaration, after the Sharks started the second half of the season by snapping their 12-game losing streak with a 3-2 victory over the Montreal Canadiens.

They also avoided tying the second-longest losing streak in franchise history, 13, set by the 1991-92 expansion Sharks and the sophomore squad twice.

Call it the power of positive thinking.

Luke Kunin, Fabian Zetterlund, and Nikita Okhotiuk scored, Okhotiuk’s goal the game-winner and his first in teal.

For alternate captain Mario Ferraro, this winning effort started off the ice yesterday with a fun and energetic practice, followed by a Ferraro-organized team dinner.

“Being on that little losing streak that we had, we kind of forget about the things, the reason why you play. We brought that back and brought some light back to our locker room,” he said. “It started away from the rink and goes a long way.”

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On the ice, Mackenzie Blackwood was superb, stopping 34-of-36 shots. He kept the San Jose Sharks in a positive frame of mind, as did Kunin and Zetterlund’s first period goals that gave the visitors a 2-1 lead despite an inconsistent early effort.

Then, San Jose turned it on from the second period to about the middle of the final frame, outplaying Montreal significantly, outshooting them 25-11 in that stretch.

“You don’t go through what we’ve been through and all of a sudden feel great about yourself,” Quinn said of what he called a just “okay” start. “You got to earn it and we started earning it, shift after shift. That’s how we have to get out of this. We took a big step today.”

Ferraro talked more about the team dinner, Marc-Edouard Vlasic touched on how special it is to play at home, Mikael Granlund broke down his incredible assist on Okhotiuk’s game-winner, and Quinn shared how proud he was of the team.

Mario Ferraro

Ferraro, on how important yesterday’s uplifting practice and team dinner were to resetting the San Jose Sharks’ mindset:

We had that practice. Some guys had family time, like I said, so not everybody was there but we had about 15 or 16 guys that were able to make it to the dinner. That’s what it’s all about. We were feeling pretty good about ourselves today prior to the game.

What happened on the ice was a reflection of how we were feeling prior to the game, more positive and leaning on each other a little bit more, finding the love in this game a little bit more.

Being on that little losing streak that we had, we kind of forget about the things, the reason why you play. We brought that back and brought some light back to our locker room. It started away from the rink and goes a long way.

Marc-Edouard Vlasic

Mikael Granlund

Granlund, on how important it was yesterday to reset with positivity:

We were just talking about, we can just be sad and like pissed off, or we could try to get back at it. I enjoy this great game of hockey, trying to get into the winning column again. It worked. And obviously, we played way better hockey tonight than we’ve been lately.

Granlund, on his assist on the game-winning goal:

I had a little bit of room, strolling around a little bit. [William Eklund] had a really good pick there. I get more room. There’s a lot of movement. Oky made a great [read to the] backdoor there. I was able to make that pass.

David Quinn

Quinn, on how proud he is of his team:

We’ve been digging ourselves out of a mental hole. I thought our start was just okay. I thought we got better and better as the game went on.

You don’t go through what we’ve been through and all of a sudden feel great about yourself. You got to earn it and we started earning it, shift after shift. That’s how we have to get out of this. We took a big step today.

I’m just really proud of our team. It’s been a tough go here. A lot of good players in there and a lot of guys with a lot of character that have fought through a lot of adversity. It’s not easy to move past some of the things we’ve been through but we did it tonight.

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