Wednesday, February 2, 2011

Sharks Defeat Rival Ducks In Fierce Battle

The San Jose Sharks may have played a phenomenal game against the Phoenix Coyotes, but already less than a day later, they suited up to battle the Anaheim Ducks in their very own Honda Center.

With a big win, the Sharks emerged triumphant in a fierce battle with the Ducks in Anaheim. After the first puck drop, it did not take long for the Sharks to strike first, with Dany Heatley scoring his 19th goal of the season just fourteen seconds into the first period. Only seven short minutes later, Ben Eager ripped a beautiful top right corner wrist shot to score his first goal as a Shark on Anaheim's netminder Jonas Hiller. Eager's shot almost made it seem like he was recruited to the Sharks for his sniping ability. Following Eager's goal, Jason Demers fired the puck into the net from the blue line, increasing the Sharks lead to 3-0. Only half of the first period had elapsed, and Hiller already was pulled from his post in the net. Definitely a bad night for the goaltender who had enjoyed an NHL-best 25 wins (tied with Tim Thomas of the Boston Bruins). This lead continued to the end of the first period.

As all Sharks fans understand from yesterday's match, a three-goal lead never guarantees a winning effort, especially with forty minutes of regulation time left in the game, and with the fast paced anything-can-happen speed of professional ice hockey.

Anaheim began to chip in their goals early in the second period, with the Ducks' Joffrey Lupul decreasing the Sharks' lead to 3-1. Up until the Ducks' even strength goal, the Sharks had been able to kill two of what would come to be many penalties against them. Ryane Clowe increased the Sharks' lead back to three goals with a nice power play opportunity, although the Ducks' Cam Fowler answered right back with a power play goal, as he had been in a fortunate position to the right side of Niemi when the puck bounced over to his stick. The second period ended with a 4-2 Sharks edge.

The Ducks again contributed to their late surge early in the third period, increasing the score to 4-3, which then turned the game into a highly defensive battle, as the Sharks kept their defenseman strong in front of the net and the forwards not taking any risky chances to enter the offensive zone. After Ben Eager's Delay of Game penalty by shooting the puck over the glass, the Ducks emerged with a powerful offensive strategy, effectively keeping the puck in the Sharks' zone and unleashing a barrage of shots on Antti Niemi, who fortunately played very well to keep the shots out.

By the end of the third period, the Sharks managed to hold their 4-3 lead, beating the Ducks at their home and placing them in a more comfortable playoff position. Although the standings still remain the same, a continued momentum by the Sharks can help solidify their position in the Western Conference standings with more big wins like the last two games.

Although it seemed the Sharks would break down and succumb to the large Ducks offensive effort near the end of the third period, the team earned their two points and overall played a solid game, playing well to kill the many penalties they had in the Ducks' favor.

Honorable mention goes to Ryane Clowe, who not only scored the game winning goal, but played the corners very effectively, setting up his linemates with great opportunities to score.

The Sharks continue their road trip against the Boston Bruins on Saturday, February 5th in Boston.


  1. Sharks are on fire... let's cement that playoff spot =)

  2. Good stuff again tonight!! Keep it up Sharks, consistency is what will being the cup to San Jose!!!!

  3. They're playing much better. We must be the dark horse contenders this year!