UNSUPPORTED BROWSER
NHL

Jets-Sharks Preview

The San Jose Sharks gained a satisfying measure of revenge in their season opener.

They look to continue what they hope is another strong start Saturday night against the visiting Winnipeg Jets, who may already be without one of their top players.

San Jose claimed a 4-0 win at Los Angeles on Thursday, spoiling the Kings' Stanley Cup banner-raising ceremony. The Sharks were eliminated by the Kings in a first-round playoff series last year, becoming the fourth team in league history to blow a 3-0 lead.

Thursday's victory marked San Jose's league-best fifth straight season-opening win. The Sharks also won their next six games in 2012-13 and opened last season with six straight wins.

"It's one game. We're happy," coach Todd McLellan told the team's official website. "We've got a lot of work ahead of us. We've got a lot of work to do. They had a lot going on in their world too. I'm sure they'll be better as they move forward, but we'll take the points."

Tommy Wingels scored twice while Patrick Marleau had a goal and an assist to open his 17th season for San Jose.

The Sharks held the Kings without a power-play goal on five chances. They killed off 84.9 percent of opponents' chances last season - the league's sixth-best rate.

Antti Niemi made 34 saves in his 28th career shutout after posting a .884 save percentage in the series against the Kings.

"We're more hungry and we really want to do the details right this time," said Niemi, who is 2-2-1 with a 3.13 goals-against average versus Winnipeg - his worst GAA against any team he has faced at least in five times.

The Jets continue a three-game Pacific Division trip after a 6-2 victory at Arizona on Thursday. They registered four first-period goals - including two 15 seconds apart by Blake Wheeler. Bryan Little also scored twice, including a short-handed goal in the third period.

"We were skating really well in the first period and we came out really hard," said Little, who recorded four assists against the Sharks last season to help the Jets take two of three meetings. "We worked for those chances and we deserved them."

Wheeler, who had a goal and two assists in the last meeting in San Jose, scored a team-best 28 goals in 2013-14 while Little had 23 along with a career-high 41 assists.

Evander Kane, who was fifth on the team with 19 goals last season, did not return Thursday after leaving in the first period following a collision with teammate Mark Scheifele. Coach Paul Maurice categorized the injury as lower-body.

"We don't know. He's going to have to go see the doctors and we'll get a better idea," Maurice said. "He was moving after so that's a positive."

Ondrej Pavelec, who stopped 26 shots against the Coyotes, owns a 1.97 GAA over four games and three starts versus San Jose - though he's just 1-2-0.

San Jose, which has won three straight home openers, is 11-2-2 against the Winnipeg franchise with two ties. Marleau has played in each of those contests, tallying nine goals and 11 assists.

Promoted Stories
Comments

More NHL

SI.com

Drag this icon to your bookmark bar.
Then delete your old SI.com bookmark.

SI.com

Click the share icon to bookmark us.