Game notes: Sharks vs. Kings, Game 3

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Game notes: Sharks vs. Kings, Game 3

April 19, 2011

By Kevin Kurz
CSNBayArea.com
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Series tied 1-1
Starting Goalies

Jonathan Quick has outplayed Antti Niemi to this point, and the numbers reflect that. Quick has a 1.34 goals against average and .962 save percentage, while Niemis Game 2 struggles give him a 2.68 and .897 statline. Quick has benefited from a better defense, though, and the Sharks defenders have to do a better job of allowing Niemi to see the puck on shots from the point or block them at the point of contact.
Previous games

An evenly played Game 1 in which Joe Pavelskis overtime goal was the difference, was followed by a dominant performance by Los Angeles in Saturday nights 4-0 Game 2 Kings win. Drew Doughtys four-point night paced Los Angeles.

The series now shifts to Los Angeles, where the Sharks were 1-0-2 this season and scored just six combined goals in the three games.

Roster watch

It looks like the Sharks will get Ian White back for Game 3 after he had to sit out Saturday with the dreaded upper body injury. Los Angeles will have forward Jarret Stoll back from a one-game suspension levied upon him for hitting White into the boards from behind.

In news that wont have any impact on the game, Sharks rookie forward Logan Couture was named as a Calder Trophy finalist earlier in the day.

Whos hot?

Doughtys career night was the big story in Game 2, as he scored twice and added two assists. Quick is leading the league in save percentage through two games.

On the San Jose side, Ryane Clowe has three assists to lead the team in points, but no one has more than a single point otherwise.

Storylines

The annual search for Joe Thornton and Patrick Marleau in a first round playoff series is well underway. The players who make up two-thirds of the teams top scoring line are both without a point. Devin Setoguchi, the final cog in that line, has also not found the scoresheet. At some point these guys, who are a combined -5, will have to put the puck in the net.

The Sharks are also losing the special teams battle. They are 0-for-7 with the man advantage through two games, and have allowed three power play goals to Los Angeles.

The Kings seem intent on out-working the Sharks, especially after many had written them off when leading scorer Anze Kopitar went down with a leg injury. Whether or not the Sharks can match their intensity the rest of the series will be paramount.

Sound off

San Jose is one of just two NHL teams to have seven 20-goal scorers on its roster. That being said, can the Sharks win the series if their top line fails to produce?

Reigning AL MVP Trout to undergo thumb surgery, out 6-8 weeks

Reigning AL MVP Trout to undergo thumb surgery, out 6-8 weeks

ANAHEIM -- Los Angeles Angels star Mike Trout has a torn ligament in his left thumb and will have surgery Wednesday that is expected to sideline him between six to eight weeks.

The Angels put the reigning AL MVP on the disabled list Monday for the first time in his career. The outfielder hurt himself a day earlier making a headfirst slide to steal second base in Miami.

At 25, Trout already is a two-time AL MVP. He is hitting .337 and has 16 home runs, second most in the majors.

Angels general manager Billy Eppler said an MRI revealed the tear. Team doctor Steve Shin arrived in Anaheim later Monday night, met with Trout and it was determined surgery was his best option.

"It was news no player wants to hear," Eppler said. "He's been put in a tough spot and it's something he's still digesting."

The Angels lost shortstop Andrelton Simmons to a similar thumb injury last season. He had surgery and was out slightly over five weeks.

Los Angeles was 26-28 going Monday night's game at home against Atlanta, and the lineup recently missed ailing slugger Albert Pujols.

Trout made his major league debut by playing 40 games for the Angels in 2011. Since then, he's been a five-time All-Star and has finished in the top two in the AL MVP all five seasons.

A year after hitting .315 with a .441 on-base percentage, 29 home runs, 100 RBIs and 30 steals, Trout was off to a dynamic start. He was leading the league in on-base percentage (.461) and slugging percentage (.742) when he was hurt.

"It's really hard to quantify (his loss)," Eppler said. "We're going to feel that impact and it's going to require multiple people stepping up in his absence. The team will fight as it always does. But he's in the heart of the order and a leader in the dugout. Those are tough to absorb."

Dodgers infielder weighs in on Harper's errant helmet throw

Dodgers infielder weighs in on Harper's errant helmet throw

Before the right hooks and haymakers, there was the helmet toss.

A very bad helmet toss.

As he made his way to the mound after getting hit by a pitch on Monday afternoon, Nationals right fielder Bryce Harper attempted to throw his helmet at Giants reliever Hunter Strickland. He missed by a wide margin.

Observers took notice, including Dodgers third baseman Justin Turner.

"What was worse, Harper's helmet throw or 50 Cents first pitch? Heads up in the #McCoveyCove," Turner tweeted shortly after the brawl between the Giants and Nationals.

Turner is referring to a ceremonial first pitch thrown by rapper 50 Cent prior to a Mets game in 2014.

Harper mentioned the helmet when addressing the situation after the game.

"I was trying to go after him, with the helmet or with myself, just doing what I needed to do keep it going, I guess," Harper told reporters.