Ducks-Sharks Preview

With his club struggling to recapture last season's home success, coach Todd McLellan is urging the San Jose Sharks to play with a greater sense of urgency.

The Sharks can avoid their longest home losing streak in four years Saturday night with another victory over the Pacific Division-leading Anaheim Ducks, who have dropped five straight at the Shark Tank.

After finishing tied for second in the NHL with 29 home wins on the way to 111 points in 2013-14, San Jose (10-10-4) has lost six of seven at SAP Center since opening this season with a victory over Winnipeg.

The Sharks began a six-game homestand with shootout losses to Florida and Arizona before falling 2-0 to Calgary on Wednesday. Now they're trying to avert their first five-game slide at the Tank since losing six in a row in 2010-11.

"The rest of this homestand is critical, but so are the next two road games and the home games after that," McLellan said. "We're an everyday team right now just scrambling to get back to the point where we can get our heads above water."

The fifth-place Sharks need to get off to a better start after allowing the first goal in a fourth straight game Wednesday. They haven't been ahead at any point while losing all four contests - their longest stretch without a lead since February 2013.

San Jose has scored just 12 goals over its last eight games and ranks near the bottom of the NHL with 2.25 per game at home.

Logan Couture, second on the club with eight goals, has scored once in his last 10 games. The center, however, has four goals and five assists over a seven-game points streak versus Anaheim.

Leading scorer Joe Pavelski has a goal and four assists over a five-game points streak against the Ducks, but he's found the net just four times in his last 14 overall.

"We've got to start climbing at some point," Pavelski told the team's official website. "It's got to start somewhere."

The Sharks can start by extending their home win streak against the Ducks (14-5-5). San Jose won the first meeting this season with a pair of first-period goals en route to a 4-1 win in Anaheim on Oct. 26.

The Ducks are looking to bounce back after their three-game winning streak ended with Friday's 4-1 home loss to Chicago.

"I can sit here and make excuses, but we just weren't good enough," said center Ryan Kesler, who assisted on Hampus Lindholm's goal.

Anaheim has now given up 27 goals over its past eight games. Strapped for healthy defensemen with Francois Beauchemin (broken finger) and Clayton Stoner (mumps) sidelined, the Ducks acquired 35-year-old Eric Brewer from Tampa Bay on Friday for a 2015 draft pick.

Corey Perry, who has a team-high 12 goals, has scored 13 in his last 23 games in San Jose. Fellow winger Matt Beleskey had the lone goal against the Sharks last month and has three goals and two assists in the last three meetings.

San Jose's Antti Niemi could get another start with injured backups Alex Stalock and Troy Grosenick day-to-day. He stopped 33 of 34 shots in the first meeting and is 5-0-0 with a 1.55 goals-against average in his last five home starts against the Ducks.

Frederik Andersen, who had 34 saves Friday, has started both times in two of Anaheim's three back-to-back sets this season. He's 0-3 with a 3.37 GAA in three career meetings with the Sharks.

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