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Notes #36: Hertl Natural Hattie! Sharks Beat Flyers 3-2 in OT

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Credit: NBC Sports California

The San Jose Sharks wrap up their road trip against the Philadelphia Flyers tonight. James van Riemsdyk put the Flyers up 2-0, but Tomas Hertl powered the Sharks into OT.

Period One

We’ll check in on Radim Simek after the game. He’s a surprise scratch after a strong game, assuming he’s hurt.

In the absence of Bonino, Scott Reedy gets another shot to be the top power play unit’s net front presence. He also was tried there against Detroit, but less said about that power play, the better. Reedy was with Burns, Meier, Hertl, and Barabanov. Ryan Merkley heads the second unit which also features Gregor, Dahlen, Nick Merkley, and Weatherby manning net front.

Four left: Good job by Nick Merkley on forecheck. He’s playing the game that I liked in his first stint here.

Two left: Weatherby picks up loose puck in slot, Philly turnover, but he has to process what he wants to do faster, shoot or pass. Instead, Flyers erase what could’ve been a Grade-A. All this was off an excellent forecheck by Weatherby, I’ll add, but long-term, his pace of play needs to improve if he wants to be an NHL regular.

Period Two

Gadjovich’s last shift was at 5:32 of the opening frame. He played just two shifts tonight.

Three in: Nice cutback move by Barabanov to skate it out.

Four in: Nifty work by Dahlen up high as pressure passed, get it to point.

Eight in: Good cutback skating it up by Gregor, that’s what you gotta do to navigate puck up the ice.

Nine in: That Viel pass needed some touch, almost had Nieto on a partial breakaway.

Ten in: Meier stops up Farabee trying to exit. Ends with a Meier wraparound. Great work by Timo.

Eight left: Burns to Barabanov basic breakout pass goes south. Not sure who’s to blame, could be the ice too (apparently they had lacrosse there in afternoon), just a good example of importance of execution.

Seven left: Nice individual breakout by Ryan Merkley, lures in FC then accelerates past, then knifes through zone. van Riemsdyk then has chance where Merkley vacated…but watching replay, that’s not on Ryan, that’s on Nick Merkley, who inexplicably forechecks instead of covering in NZ. This whole sequence leads to a Flyer power play. It takes just one bad play to set off a series of unfortunate events.

Four left: Ferraro cranks it off Gregor who hurries off. Don’t forget Ferraro won the Sharks Skill Competition with a hundred MPH-plus clapper.

Three left: However not all clean for R. Merkley. Three-on-three coming toward him, Barabanov on backcheck, Merkley skates toward Barabanov’s man, there’s two Sharks on one Flyer. Merkley doesn’t sort it out here.

Better period for the San Jose Sharks — they had the better of the play. Natural Stat Trick has Sharks 3-0 High-Danger at 5-on-5 — 6-0 Flyers in first. But still zeroed up.

Period Three

Good battle win by Weatherby down low on his first shift.

JVR is a sniper, but you want a save there. Regardless, time for the San Jose Sharks to buckle down, stay within their game.

Three in: Good patience by Burns, takes a beat then gives it to Viel. Following shift, Sharks top line has a good chance, but then your presumptive third man high Hertl goes in on forecheck, not close, Flyers’ three-on-two. Gotta play smarter.

Sharks don’t have to like it, but not a good penalty there by Viel. Huge PK now.

Ferraro had a chance on that puck that skipped over Hill’s shoulder. Ferraro also could’ve got a clear all the way down off faceoff but instead just bumped it back to Philly point. Okay, now you gamble.

Hertl goal: Meier beasting as usual. The last second shoulder brush-off on York to create space was chef’s kiss.

Looks like Nick Merkley has ascended up in line-up, he’s with Dahlen and Gregor now. Dahlen gets slashed with an open net right there. Time to get the PP going.

That’s awful: On PP, Sharks leave Burns on two-on-one against, then with a Flyer literally in net behind , essentially Sharks could have a two-man advantage up ice, they flub it. Ugly.

Hertl goal: What a play by Hertl, off his skate to his stick, Flyers all around him.

Four left: Meier loses it on entry, but again, like his effort coming back.

OT

Hertl hattie! Great one-on-one Burns play to win puck, Meier drives middle.

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