Momentum swings help, hurt Sharks

March 7, 2012, 6:04 pm
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SAN JOSE - After last nights 3-2 shootout loss to the Oilers, the Sharks specifically mentioned two points in the game one they were proud of, and one they would like to eliminate from their repertoire.

More specifically, the Sharks liked the way they responded after a fluky goal just 10 seconds after the opening faceoff the quickest goal against to start a game in franchise history, that put them immediately behind the eight ball.

REWIND: Missed opportunities doom Sharks in loss

Conversely, they were peeved that they surrendered the game-tying goal just 54 seconds after taking their first lead of the game in the second period. It was the second time in two games the Sharks have seemingly fallen asleep on the shift following a key goal.

Since last nights recap focused more on the goal against (hey, it was still a 3-2 loss), heres what some of the Sharks had to say about the way they responded after Dan Boyle let a puck get away from him early leading to Jordan Eberles 30th goal. Jim Vandermeer tied the game at 1-1 about three minutes later.

One of those weird goals right off the start, but it really didnt discourage us, Joe Thornton said. We worked through it.

Ryane Clowe said: We responded really well when Jimmy scored on that tough break by Boiler. That was a good sign.

Todd McLellan, coaching in his first game since getting whacked in the head with a stick in Minnesota a week ago Sunday, was also encouraged by the way the Sharks played out the rest of the period after falling behind.

San Jose outshot the Oilers in the frame, 12-7.

The good sign is we get scored on, on a lucky play 10 seconds in when the guy bats it out of the air. If we were going to fold or welt up it would have been right after that, but I thought we showed some resiliency and came back and played well there, McLellan said.

The Sharks gained their first lead when Clowe took advantage of a misplay by Devan Dubnyk behind the net, and a nice play by Logan Couture to poke a loose puck in front of the crease for Clowe to flip in. Just when the crowd sounded like it was ready to get behind its team, after seeing just two goals in the first three games of the homestand, Ryan Smyth scored a deflating goal when a slap shot by Jeff Petry deflected in off of his body.

On Saturday against the Blues, T.J. Oshie scored what turned out to be the game-winner just 20 seconds after Torrey Mitchell tied the game at 1-1. The Blues went on to a 3-1 victory.

In fact, the Sharks were fortunate to escape the second period on Tuesday still tied at 2-2 after Smyths goal. The Oilers applied heavy pressure for the final four minutes of the period, and the dangerous San Gagner barely missed the net on a laser of a wrist shot when he found himself open in the slot.

That sequence of events was the low point of the game for San Jose, not counting Gagners shootout winner.

I think the shift that stands out is, we take the lead, 2-1, and then we give it right back. That one stands out to me, Boyle said.

Whether you get scored on or score a goal, that next shift is very important to either turn the momentum or keep it going. That was a tough one to give up there. Then, we just dont bury our chances. Thats been kind of the name of the game the last few.