– Three goals in a span of 9:25 of the second period sparked the
Detroit Red Wings to a 4-1 victory over the San Jose Sharks
Saturday night at sold-out HP Pavilion.
SAN JOSE – Three goals in a span of 9:25 of the second period sparked the Detroit Red Wings to a 4-1 victory over the San Jose Sharks Saturday night at sold-out HP Pavilion.
The Sharks, 9-2 over the past 11 games, play in Los Angeles Monday and Phoenix Tuesday before coming home to face the Boston Bruins Thursday.
The loss left San Jose six points in front of Phoenix for the Pacific Division lead. The Sharks trail Chicago, the Western Conference pace-setter, by three points.
Patrick Marleau moved atop the NHL in goals by drilling home his 29th of the season 11:02 into the first period to open the scoring.
Joe Thornton won an offensive zone face-off cleanly to Dan Boyle. The defenseman’s hard shot from the blueline was knocked down by goalie Jimmy Howard. Dany Heatley swiped at the loose puck, but Howard’s stick turned back the attempt. Marleau was able to quickly line the puck into the net, snapping a tie for the goal lead with Ranger Marian Gaborik.
Detroit’s best chance to tie the score in the first period happened with 1:45 left. Wing forward Dan Cleary turned a Shark turnover at the blueline into a breakaway, Evgeni Nabokov kicked aside Cleary’s point-blank attempt the leave the Sharks up 1-0.
The Red Wings, the Western Conference representative in the past two Stanley Cup Finals, showed their scoring prowess in the decisive second period.
Detroit, 3-1 through a Pacific Division roadtrip but still in ninth place in the conference, scored the equalizer 6:37 into the decisive second period.
Ryane Clowe’s cross-ice pass at the San Jose blueline ended up on the stick of Detroit’s Pavel Datsyuk. The speedster beat Nabokov from the high slot for his 11th goal of the season, 182nd of his career.
Detroit struck for two goals in a 69-second span to emerge from the period for a 3-1 cushion.
The high shot from the right point by Detroit’s Doug Janik was redirected by Patrick Eaves at 14:53 to make it 2-1. The goal was reviewed because Eaves’ stick was near the height of the goal when the redirection happened, but the goal stood for Eave’s 50th career tally.
Detroit deflated the crowd at 16:02 when Cleary snapped a shot inside the far post on a 3-on-2 rush.
The Wings completed the scoring when Darren Helm rushed the net from the left side and his second push at the goal from the edge of the crease slipped under Nabokov at 4:34.
“(Detroit) beat us in a lot of aspects,” said Sharks captain Rob Blake. “We weren’t careful with the puck.”