SAN JOSE – Ben Lovejoy’s overtime goal gave the Anaheim Ducks a 3-2 win over the Sharks in preseason action at the SAP Center on Friday night.
Lovejoy’s blast from just inside the blue line beat Antti Niemi at 2:48, to even San Jose’s preseason record to 1-0-1.
Paling in comparison to the final score, however, was that both the Sharks and Ducks lost a key forward due to injury. Raffi Torres and Emerson Etem violently collided at the blue line in the second period when Torres couldn’t avoid running into Etem as the Ducks forward tried to stay onside. Neither player was able to skate in the third period.
There were no immediate health updates before the conclusion of the game.
Torres was seeing his first on-ice action since Game 1 of the second round of the Stanley Cup playoffs, after which he was suspended for hitting the Kings’ Jarret Stoll.
Newcomers Tomas Hertl and Tyler Kennedy both scored goals for the Sharks. Hertl’s came at 14:42 of the first period, when he poked in an Adam Comrie wrist shot that missed the net, but bounced back out in front from the back boards. It was Hertl’s first goal and second point of the preseason, and gave San Jose the 1-0 lead.
Kennedy’s goal at 8:18 of the second broke a 1-1 tie. On a shorthanded rush, Patrick Marleau slid a pass to the long time Penguin, who converted on goalie Viktor Fasth.
Etem’s early second period goal from close range on a nice pass through the slot from Devante Smith-Pelly tied the game at 1-1. Corey Perry lifted a shot over Niemi’s far shoulder at 16:01 of the second to make it a 2-2 game, where it remained through regulation.
The Sharks did not have a power play for the duration, and killed off three Anaheim advantages to go with the shorthanded marker.
Niemi played the entire game in net for the Sharks, finishing with 28 saves. Harri Sateri, who is expected to start on Saturday, backed him up.
Sateri is battling with Alex Stalock for the backup goaltender position on the opening night roster. Stalock played in the Sharks’ 3-2 win in Vancouver on Monday.
Fasth went wire-to-wire for Anaheim, stopping 24 shots.
The Sharks’ dressed their top two lines for the first time in the preseason, meaning Marleau, Joe Thornton, Brent Burns and Logan Couture all played for the first time. Defensemen Dan Boyle, Matt Irwin, Marc-Edouard Vlasic and Justin Braun also made their debuts.
Torres, Comrie, Hertl, Kennedy, Eriah Hayes, Bracken Kearns, Matt Nieto, Matt Pelech, Rylan Schwartz and Taylor Doherty rounded out the roster.
Notable Ducks players were Perry, Ryan Getzlaf, Cam Fowler, Andrew Cogliano and Daniel Winnik.
The Sharks remain at home for their next two preseason games, including a Saturday night matchup against the Phoenix Coyotes (7:30 p.m.). On Tuesday, the Vancouver Canucks visit the SAP Center.