NHL Hockey

2
Final 1 2 3 Tot
Vegas 1 0 1 2
San Jose 2 1 2 5
5
Golden Knights lead 3-2
Three Stars
1: Tomas Hertl, SJ (2G)
2: Erik Karlsson, SJ (2A)
3: Martin Jones, SJ (30 Saves)
7:00 PM PT8:00 PM MT9:00 PM CT10:00 PM ET2:00 GMT10:00 7:00 PM MST9:00 PM EST6:00 UAE (+1)22:00 ET23:00 BRT, April 18, 2019
SAP Center at San Jose, San Jose, California  Attendance: 17,562

Reeling Sharks still confident at home vs. Knights

Vegas Golden Knights at San Jose Sharks

  1. With their 5-0 win over the Sharks in Game 4, the Golden Knights have now scored well over half of their all-time playoff goals against San Jose -- they have 40 goals (including 12 PPG) in 10 games against the Sharks, and 35 goals (6 PPG) in 14 games against all other teams.
  2. Marc-Andre Fleury posted his 15th career playoff shutout, tied with Chris Osgood for fourth most all-time. Seven of those have come in the last three postseasons, in which he has posted a .925 save percentage, third best among all goalies in that span (minimum 10 games).
  3. Max Pacioretty and Mark Stone both lead the league with 10 points this postseason. In the past 20 years, only five other skaters have reached 10 points in four playoff games, and no pair of teammates has done it.
  4. The Sharks are 3-3 in Game 5s all-time when trailing 3-1 in a series, but they've never come back to win any of those series. Their 0-6 record in such series since 1999-2000 is tied for the worst in the league -- three other teams are also 0-6.
  5. Marc-Edouard Vlasic was a full participant at practice and could possibly return to the Sharks' lineup tonight. The Golden Knights have outscored San Jose 13-3 in his absence -- since 2016-17, the Sharks have allowed 3.55 goals per game without him, compared to 2.72 with him (regular & postseason).
  6. San Jose leads all playoff teams with 93 PIM, and Vegas is in third with 79. In the third period of Game 4, the Sharks had 32 penalty minutes compared to zero for Vegas. That was the fourth-largest PIM differential in any period in the last 10 postseasons.
(AP Photo/John Locher)

Trailing the Vegas Golden Knights 3-1 in their best-of-seven Western Conference quarterfinal and faced with major goaltending issues, things are looking pretty bleak for the San Jose Sharks heading into Thursday night's Game 5 in San Jose.

San Jose has lost three in a row, including 5-0 on Tuesday night, while being outscored 16-6, and starting goaltender Martin Jones hasn't made it to the second period in two of the losses after being pulled following shaky starts. So what gives the Sharks hope they can rebound to win the series?

"We're still playing," said forward Logan Couture. "We've got a chance. It's never over till it's over. We go home to where we've been good all year ... try to win a game, and that's that."

The Golden Knights agree.

"We need to forget about this win," said forward Max Pacioretty after scoring two goals and two assists in Tuesday's win. "We are going into the next game knowing that from the start, they are going to give it their all, so we need to be ready for that, and we need to match their intensity next game."

"Doesn't matter what happened 1/8Tuesday 3/8," added forward Alex Tuch. "It's a clean slate. Everyone's going to come out, it's going to be physical, it's going to be gritty. We've got to grind it out."

San Jose went 25-11-5 at SAP Center during the regular season and split the first two games there, including an impressive 5-2 victory in Game 1.

"For us, it's take care of home ice right now in that first game," said Sharks captain Joe Pavelski. "Win a game. We know we can win one game (in Las Vegas). We believe that as a group.

"But we've got to win our next game, and I think it sets up for us when we win at home. We get a little rest with the two-day break (Game 6 is scheduled for Sunday in Las Vegas), then come back here and dig in and gut out a win here and come back. So, I think there is a formula for us, but it's get that first one."

To do that, the Sharks also will need much better goaltending from Jones, who will start again on Thursday night despite being pulled at the end of the first period on Tuesday after allowing two goals on just seven shots.

Vegas, which defeated the Sharks 4-2 in last year's Western Conference semifinals, and San Jose have played 10 games in the playoffs the last two seasons, with Marc-Andre Fleury and Jones starting all 10 of them. Fleury, who had 28 saves in Tuesday night's win to move into a tie with Chris Osgood for fourth place all-time with 15 career playoff shutouts, has registered three shutouts against the Sharks in that span compared to one for Jones. Jones, meanwhile, has been pulled four times.

"He has to be better; he's got to be better," San Jose coach Peter DeBoer said after Tuesday night's loss. "We wouldn't have won tonight anyways because we didn't score a goal. We've got to find a way to score, and we've got to get some good goaltending, too. That's their formula. That's what's working for them."

San Jose should get a boost with the return of center Joe Thornton from a one-game suspension for delivering a blow to the head of Tomas Nosek. Defenseman Marc-Edouard Vlasic, sidelined since taking a high shot from Shea Theodore in Game 2, returned to practice on Wednesday and is "a possibility" to play Thursday, according to DeBoer.

--Field Level Media

Updated April 18, 2019

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