Programming note – Sharks-Ducks coverage starts today at 6:30 p.m. with Sharks Pregame Live on CSN California
WHERE THEY STAND
Sharks: 15-10-1, 31 points, 3rd Pacific Division
Ducks: 13-9-5, 31 points, 4th Pacific Division
PREGAME NEWS AND NOTES
***The Sharks and Ducks have split the first two meetings of the season, both in San Jose. On Oct. 25, Marc-Edouard Vlasic’s overtime goal was the difference in a 2-1 win. The Ducks responded on Nov. 26, beating San Jose, 3-2, and are 4-0-1 in the last five head-to-head matchups.
“They’re close, they’re hard fought battles,” Joel Ward said. “It’s obviously a lot of similarities of big bodies, teams that get on the forecheck, and got good special teams, as well.”
***Martin Jones will face Jonathan Bernier in goal. For Bernier, it will be his first game since giving up eight goals at Calgary on Dec. 4 in an 8-3 Flames win.
Does Pete DeBoer think that game might linger with Bernier?
“I’m more worried about the reverse,” said the Sharks coach. “I think usually good pros bounce back with great efforts after games like that. That’s what I’m expecting.”
Logic says that Aaron Dell will start the Sharks’ home game against Carolina on Saturday in the second of a back-to-back, but DeBoer would not confirm that was the plan.
***DeBoer wouldn’t offer much in regards to his lineup against Anaheim, either, although defensemen David Schlemko and Mirco Mueller, and forward Matt Nieto stayed on the ice late, indicating they probably won’t play.
Schlemko is battling a right ankle injury that kept him out of Wednesday’s game against Ottawa. Mueller was recalled on Friday morning.
KEEP AN EYE ON...
Sharks: Dylan DeMelo. The defenseman will play his fourth game of the season with Schlemko likely still out, after he was a healthy scratch for the first 19 games of the season. The 23-year-old has one goal, coming against the Ducks on Nov. 26, and an even rating while averaging 13:35 of ice time per game.
Ducks: Ryan Getzlaf. The Ducks captain scored the game-winning goal on the power play in the most recent meeting with the Sharks, and has nine points (1g, 8a) in his last 11 games. Getzlaf is tied for second in the NHL with 20 assists.
Patrick Marleau – Joe Thornton – Joe Pavelski
Kevin Labanc – Logan Couture – Joel Ward
Mikkel Boedker – Chris Tierney – Joonas Donskoi
Micheal Haley – Tommy Wingels – Melker Karlsson
Paul Martin – Brent Burns
Marc-Edouard Vlasic – Justin Braun
Brenden Dillon – Dylan DeMelo
Martin Jones (starter)
Rickard Rakell – Ryan Getzlaf – Corey Perry
Andrew Cogliano – Ryan Kesler – Jakob Silfverberg
Nick Ritchie – Antoine Vermette – Ondrej Kase
Joe Cramarossa – Stefan Noesen – Logan Shaw
Cam Fowler – Sami Vatanen
Hampus Lundholm – Josh Manson
Shea Theodore – Kevin Bieksa
Jonathan Bernier (starter)
Sharks: David Schlemko (right ankle) is doubtful. Tomas Hertl (right knee sprain) is out.
Ducks: Rickard Rakell (upper body) is questionable. Nic Kerdiles (concussion), Nate Thompson (Achilles surgery), Simon Despres (concussion) and Clayton Stoner (lower body) are out.
“We know this is going to be a dogfight right to the end. We’re setting in and prepared for that.” – Pete DeBoer, on the Pacific Division race