Sharks score five straight to shock Coyotes 5-3


Sharks score five straight to shock Coyotes 5-3


SAN JOSE (AP) Patrick Marleauprovided a fitting ending to a night that began with a pregame ceremonyhonoring his 1,000th career game last month.Marleau scored a short-handed goalwith 6:05 remaining to cap San Jose's rally from a three-goal deficitand the Sharks beat the Phoenix Coyotes 5-3 Tuesday night."It's a nice way to finish it offwith a win on the same day as the ceremony with the parents in town,"Marleau said. "It's a nice little story line, don't you think?"Joe Pavelski scored in the closingseconds of the second period and opening minutes of the third to startSan Jose's comeback and Kyle Wellwood tied it later in the third. AlexStalock got the win in relief in his NHL debut, making nine saves,including a strong pad stop on a tip by Shane Doan on the power playshortly before Marleau's game-winner.
RATTO: Two-faced Sharks living dangerously
Keith Yandle scored to extend hispoint-scoring streak to 10 games for the Coyotes, but lost the puck toMarleau in the offensive zone on the power play.Marleau then knocked the stick out ofKyle Turris' hands while getting the puck in the middle of the ice andskated in to beat Ilya Bryzgalov on the breakaway."I was able to chip it by the d-manthere and win a race for the puck," said Marleau, who played his1,000th game last month in Phoenix. "The puck was rolling the whole wayand I was able to get the shot off."
VIDEO: Patrick Marleau postgame
Joe Thornton added an empty-net goalwith 10.2 seconds to play, leading Yandle to break his stick infrustration as the Coyotes head home on a downer instead of with theirsixth straight road win."They got a couple of good goals andcaught a couple of breaks," Yandle said. "We couldn't close them out.It was a back breaker but the good thing about it is we play againtomorrow night."The comeback sent the Sharks off ona high note for their longest road trip of the season - a seven-game,two-week trek that begins in Anaheim on Wednesday night.The Sharks have won five of sixheading into the road trip, but coach Todd McLellan was in no mood tocelebrate the most recent win after watching his team come out flat formost of the first two periods."If we leave here patting ourselveson the back, we've got huge problems," McLellan said. "I was reallydisappointed in our group tonight. Very disappointed in the lack ofdrive and lack of passion to come out and play. That's the last thing Iexpected. I do give them credit they found a way to dig in and comeback."VIDEO: Todd McLellan postgame
Radim Vrbata opened the scoring forthe Coyotes and Paul Bissonnette added his first goal of the season forPhoenix, which lost to San Jose for the seventh straight meeting.The Sharks trailed 3-0 late in thesecond period on a night when nothing seemed to go right. They werebooed by the home crowd, pulled goalie Antti Niemi and couldn't evenget into a fight when they tried.Jamal Mayers dropped his glovesright after a faceoff midway through the second, ready to challengeBissonnette. But Bissonnette, who has nine fighting penalties thisseason, didn't take the bait and Mayers was left shaking his head as hewas sent to the locker room with a 10-minute misconduct penalty.But the frustration started to easelate in the period when Eric Belanger got sent off for holding. DanyHeatley sent a shot in on Bryzgalov and Pavelski knocked the rebound inwith 7.2 seconds left in the period to cut it to 3-1.
VIDEO: Joe Pavelski postgame
Then just 1:24 into the third,Pavelski skated to the front of the net and was in position to knock ina rebound of Devin Setoguchi's to make it a one-goal game.Wellwood tied it with his first goalsince joining the Sharks late last month off a pass from fellownewcomer Ben Eager - capping a stretch of three goals in less than 6minutes.
VIDEO: Kyle Wellwood postgame
"It was a huge disappointment,"Phoenix coach Dave Tippett said. "We made a couple of critical errorsto let them back into the game and they ran with it. We took a penaltyat the end of the second period that gave them some life."The Coyotes jumped on the Sharkswith two goals in a strong opening period and then took control of thegame when Bissonnette scored for the first time in more than a year ona one-timer in the slot off a feed from Oliver Ekman-Larsson to make it3-0 and draw boos from the crowd. That goal led McLellan to pull AnttiNiemi and put Stalock in goal for his NHL debut."I just threw on the gear and wentout," Stalock said. "I didn't have to fight any nerves because it wasimmediate. That was nice."VIDEO: Alex Stalock postgame
NOTES: Yandle has 15 points duringhis 10-game streak. ... San Jose leading goal scorer Logan Couture wasa late scratch with the flu. ... The Sharks did not recall F JamieMcGinn from Worcester after the All-Star break. McGinn scored one goalin 49 games before the break.

On eve of return to SF, Romo shares reception he expects from Giants fans

On eve of return to SF, Romo shares reception he expects from Giants fans

For nine seasons, Sergio Romo called San Francisco home.

On Monday, the 34-year-old reliever makes his first trip back to AT&T Park wearing Dodger blue.

What kind of reception does Romo expect to receive from Giants fans? The three-time World Series champion addressed that while talking to reporters before the Dodgers' game in Arizona on Sunday.

"I don’t expect them to boo. I do expect them to know I’m not on their side anymore," Romo said according to Orange Country Register beat writer Bill Plunkett.

Romo hopes that Giants fans will remember the three Commissioner's Trophies he helped bring to San Francisco.

"I don’t know what to expect. What I’m hoping for is that people remember what I did and understand I didn’t leave them out of spite," Romo said.

After spending most of the offseason unsigned, Romo inked a one-year, $3 million deal with the Dodgers in February. In seven appearances this season, Romo has a 11.81 ERA in 5.1 innings.


Lynch outcome should determine whether Raiders draft a running back

Lynch outcome should determine whether Raiders draft a running back

It’s officially NFL draft week. Marshawn Lynch still isn’t a Raider.

A contract impasse remained as of Sunday morning, a few days before general manager Reggie McKenzie’s desire for a by-Thursday resolution.

Deadlines, even soft ones, prompt deals. But Marshawn is unique, adding a level of uncertainty to procedings. 

The Raiders would prefer Lynch agree to terms on a new contract so they can acquire his rights from Seattle -- that’s the easier part – and know where they stand heading into the NFL Draft.

McKenzie left several doors cracked during a Friday pre-draft presser, saying Lynch’s presence wouldn’t stop him from drafting a rusher, not having the Oakland native wouldn’t guarantee it, and that there’s always a chance Lynch could come later no matter what happens during amateur selection.

Those things could be true. Or, you know, not. McKenzie prefers mystery this time of year.

Bottom line: The Raiders need a bigger back to pair with smaller, yet elusive runners DeAndre Washington and Jalen Richard.

The Raiders want Lynch to fill the void. Ditto for Raider Nation, especially the Oakland state. A few free-agent options remain, including LaGarrette Blount. Or the Raiders could draft a back, something the Raiders have done well in later rounds.

They got Latavius Murray in the sixth round four years back, and he provided quality before changing uniforms this offseason. They got Washington in the fifth last time and pulled Richard from undrafted free agency. They could mine talent again this year. Waiting seems more likely if Lynch is around. 

Quality abounds in this draft class, with several worthy of early selections and talent easily found late. Let’s inspect McKenzie’s draft options at running back, should he need one:

Good fits: It’s hard to see the Raiders looking at a rusher in the first round, considering the draft’s depth at the position and major defensive needs. A first-round talent might be considered in the second. If controversial former Oklahoma rusher Joe Mixon is available following a free fall due to off-field issues described in detail here, a running back might come early.

Tennessee’s Alvin Kamara could be another Day 2 option, an explosive talent who analysts say has wiggle and power to create coveted yards after contact. He could be a three-down back thanks to quality as a receiver.

Odds are, however, the Raiders will look deeper into the draft. Wyoming’s Brian Hill was an excellent college producer who runs strong and might fit well into the Raiders rotation. Round projections vary, but he should be available on Day 3.

Pittsburgh’s James Conner offers great power at 233 pounds. He could run through tacklers and wear down defenses for the Raiders’ shift backs. He's also well known for drive and work ethic. He is projected as a fifth or sixth round pick.

Brigham Young’s Jamaal Williams might offer value and power rushing later in the draft. Clemson’s Wayne Gallman has tackle-breaking ability, but analysts say he isn’t a strong pass protector.