Welcome to Last Word on Sports new weekly San Jose Sharks Summary. Each week we will take a look at games, roster moves, injury notes and anything else you need to start your week off with a recap of all things Sharks.
Sharks finish off the Predators to Advance
The San Jose Sharks played three games in three cities this week, and it all started in Nashville for Game 6. A victory would have allowed a few days of rest for the Sharks, but Viktor Arvidsson scored less than three minutes into the first overtime period to send the series to a deciding Game 7. Matt Nieto was injured at the beginning of this game and is still out, creating some issues in the Sharks bottom six forward group.
Game 7 was a sound thumping of the Predators at the hands of the Sharks. There was no quit in San Jose’s game and finally when it was all over, the Sharks hung five goals on Pekka Rinne before his spectacular meltdown and showed a killer instinct perhaps never seen before at the Shark Tank. San Jose had four keys to their series win and sent the rowdy sell-out crowd home happy.
Back to the Djurgardens Well
The San Jose Sharks announced the signing of Marcus Sorensen to a 1-year entry level contract.
The forward from Djurgardens IF of the Swedish Hockey League was named the SHL’s Rookie of the Year in 2014-15 when he led Djurgardens in scoring with 32 points in 50 games. The reports say Sorensen possesses solid, well-rounded offensive skills and has a physical component to his game despite not having ideal size for the task. Sorensen was also a teammate of new Sharks goaltending prospect Mantas Armalis at Djurgardens IF during the 2015-16 season.
Sorensen was originally a fourth-round draft pick of the Ottawa Senators in 2010 and recorded 35 goals and 42 assists in 115 SHL games. He will get a long look at training camp with a number of possible roster spots likely available in the Sharks bottom forward lines.
Western Conference Final Game 1:
The Sharks played decently in the 2-1 loss but if the series does not go in favor of San Jose, fans will point to these 60 minutes as the game that got away. After posting the best road record in the NHL this season, the Sharks are still looking for their first road win since Game 5 against the Los Angles Kings.
The first period was as expected with two teams that just finished seven-game series taking time early in the game to get their legs under them and a feel for each other. The second period was dominated by the Sharks, who outshot St. Louis 16-5 in the middle frame. Despite the ice tilted at the Blues net for 20 minutes, Jori Lehtera’s unassisted goal at 9:15 of the second period snuck by Jones and ended up being the game winner. The Sharks had their chances, but Brian Elliott was able to keep the Sharks at bay.
Brent Burns had an uncharacteristically bad day on the Sharks blueline. The usually steady and often dangerous defender had trouble with the puck throughout the game and his turnover lead to Lehtera’s goal. The positive to take away for the Sharks is how dominant the team was in the puck possession battle. The Blues were lucky to steal a game but over a seven game series, that type of play is not a recipe for success. Blues coach Ken Hitchcock cannot like what he saw in the opening game and most likely will make some changes going into Tuesday night.
Overall the Sharks as a whole looked rusty after playing nearly eight games of hockey in a seven game series due to two games moving to overtime. Factoring in another cross-country flight and a 5 pm PST start time, the Sharks didn’t get any breaks on the scheduling of Game 1 and will look to bounce back on Tuesday in Game 2.
Photo by Harry How/Getty Images