Sharks score 3 power-play goals to beat Kings 3-2 in Game 4
SAN JOSE, Calif. (AP) Given another chance to win a playoff game with their power play, the San Jose Sharks did just that by getting goals instead of just generating chances.
With their third win in four games, the Sharks now have another chance to close out the Los Angeles Kings in a first-round series.
Brent Burns and Joe Pavelski scored power-play goals in the second period and the Sharks again moved to the brink of eliminating the Kings from the playoffs with a 3-2 victory Wednesday night in Game 4 of their first-round series.
Patrick Marleau added a power-play goal in the third period as the Sharks scored three times with the man advantage two nights after an 0-for-5 performance in a 2-1 overtime loss.
''For us, we'll get goals if we're doing the right things,'' Burns said. ''Last game, it didn't happen and to a man, we felt that it cost us the game. It was great to come back and make a difference tonight.''
Martin Jones made 26 saves against his former team to put San Jose up 3-1 in the series heading into Game 5 on Friday night in Los Angeles.
But knocking the Kings out is never easy. The Sharks blew a 3-0 series lead to Los Angeles in the first round two years ago, becoming the fourth NHL team ever to lose a best-of-seven series after winning the first three games.
''They don't quit,'' Sharks forward Logan Couture said. ''We respect that about them. No matter the score, they're going to continue to push. That has something to do with their coaching staff all the way down to the last player on their team. ... They've won championships for a reason.''
Trevor Lewis and Luke Schenn scored and Jonathan Quick made 26 saves for the Kings. But Los Angeles was done in by San Jose's potent power play after shutting that unit down in Game 3.
Kings coach Darryl Sutter described the first three games as a ''power-play series'' and was proved prophetic with the way Game 4 went. The Sharks converted on their first two chances with the man advantage and stopped Los Angeles to take control of the game.
''Their power play generated great opportunities and our power play didn't,'' Sutter said. ''We couldn't cash in.''
The bearded Burns got it started after Jeff Carter got sent to the box for roughing Marc-Edouard Vlasic after the whistle in a scrum near San Jose's net. Joel Ward froze quick before sending a cross-ice pass to Burns, who launched a one-timer that beat Quick before he could slide across the crease for his second goal of the series.
Then, after the Sharks killed two penalties, they struck again when Rob Scuderi was called for tripping Tomas Hertl. Joe Thornton got the puck behind the net and put a centering pass right on Pavelski's tape for the goal. Pavelski has four goals in the series.
Marleau added his first goal of the series just seconds into another power-play chance when he gathered in Logan Couture's blocked shot and beat Quick with a backhander to make it 3-0.
''Our PK just wasn't there tonight,'' Kings forward Dwight King said. ''They had so many looks. That group has been together for five years. They are so familiar with each other. We have to bear down.''
Los Angeles got back in the game with two goals in less than five minutes thanks to point shots from Schenn. The first was deflected by Lewis for a goal and the second went through a screen to beat Jones.
But the Sharks managed to hold on for the final 13:16, including a tense final minute that featured three blocked shots.
''It felt like the last minute of a basketball game,'' Ward said. ''It was just a lot of stoppages of play, a lot of whistles. You've got to stay in the moment as best you can.''
The game got off to a fast start as the teams went end to end in a first period that was played entirely at even strength. Both teams had good chances, with the Kings getting the better of the play in the opening half of the period and the Sharks answering after that.
But Drew Doughty made a diving stop in the crease to rob Thornton and Quick stymied Marleau on a 2-on-1 to keep San Jose off the board.
NOTES: Pavelski has 30 career playoff goals. ... The win by the Sharks was the first by a home team this series. ... Both teams kept the same lineup as in Game 3.