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Benn Ferriero Steps Up On His Birthday

Ferriero Scores His First Playoff Goal

Saturday, 04.30.2011 / 3:08 AM / News
By San Jose Sharks Staff
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Benn Ferriero Steps Up On His Birthday
Benn Ferriero will likely never have a better birthday than he did Friday night. He not only played in his first career Stanley Cup Playoff game, but he netted the game winner in the overtime stanza.

“That was a pretty special birthday present,” Ferriero commented after. “I don’t think I could ask for anything more than that.”

Clearly the shining moment of his hockey career.

“I’d say so,” Ferriero, “I scored a goal in triple overtime in college, but it doesn’t really compare to this one.”

Ferriero had played just one NHL game since February 5, but Sharks Head Coach Todd McLellan has the confidence to put him in the right spot.

“It was great to see Benny find a way to get the puck to the net,” McLellan said. “Fortunately his first shift out in overtime he ended it and we didn’t have to continue to tax the three big lines.”

Ferriero play just over five minutes on the night, but the longer overtime went, the more Ferriero would likely be playing.

“We didn’t use him a lot in the game,” McLellan said. “As it wore on and we felt overtime was looming once we scored, we talked at the intermission of overtime about getting people involved. Benny was one of them.”

McLellan actually gave Ferriero a bit of a heads up on the winning shift. About 30 seconds of warning that is.

“You’ve just got to be ready at all times,” Ferriero said. “When your number gets called you’ve got to make the most of your opportunity. You try to stay loose and try to stay involved in the game. I hadn’t played in a bit. He gave me a little heads up to be ready.”

McLellan said playing Ferriero on the night was as statement to what the rookie showed during the regular season.

“It wasn’t a genius move, I can tell you that,” McLellan said. “We just felt looking at their lineup, and the way their third and fourth line played, we needed certain ingredients. We’ve really liked Benny Ferriero’s game when he’s come up and contributed.”

Ferriero rewarded the coach by doing what was called for to close out the contest.

“Couture just poked it free a little bit,” Ferriero said. “We were trying to throw pucks to the net all game long, so I just grabbed it, spun out of the corner and threw it to the net. It bounced off a stick, skate, something, took a good bounce and ended up in the back of the net.”

Ferriero was actually told by McLellan the previous day he’d be playing because of the Detroit matchup and he came prepared.

“I found out yesterday afternoon,” Ferriero said. “I had a little time to prepare, which was nice. I knew what was going on. I was excited to get into my first playoff game. He just calls you in, let’s you know what he expects from of you, what he’s thinking. Said go get them tomorrow. You’re penciled.”

The Sharks dressing room was very happy for their unlikely hero.

“He kept himself prepared and for him to score that goal for us was huge,” Couture said. “In the playoffs you need everyone and some extras as well.”

The goal was likely the best highlight of Ferriero’s 24-year-old life.

“I guess that was the first shot. First game, first goal, on my birthday,” Ferriero said.

What a night.

The last NHL Player to score his first playoff goal in overtime in his first playoff game was San Jose's Niko Dimitrakos in the 2004 Western Conference Quarterfinals in Game 1 against the St. Louis Blues.

The Sharks have now won four of their five playoff games in an extra stanza.

“Last shot wins and we’ve been fortunate,” McLellan said. “You go back to the games against L.A., they had their chances, we had ours. Sometimes the bounces go your way, you can’t always count on them.”

“I think that’s been huge for us, but you never know what is going to happen when you go to overtime. You have to be confident, but you never know,” Antti Niemi said.

San Jose will have a rare Noon start this weekend.

“The good thing about that game is we practice at 11 or 12 every day, so our bodies and our minds are prepared to show up and think hockey and play hockey at that time,” McLellan said.

Joe Pavelski scored his fourth goal and fifth point (4-1=5). He has recorded a point in all five wins in the postseason.

Joe Thornton picked up an assist and now has a five-game point streak (2-4=6).

Game 2 with Detroit will be at NOON on Sunday and will be on NBC, 98.5/102.1 FM and




1 z - ANA 82 54 20 8 266 209 116
2 y - COL 82 52 22 8 250 220 112
3 x - STL 82 52 23 7 248 191 111
4 x - SJS 82 51 22 9 249 200 111
5 x - CHI 82 46 21 15 267 220 107
6 x - LAK 82 46 28 8 206 174 100
7 x - MIN 82 43 27 12 207 206 98
8 x - DAL 82 40 31 11 235 228 91
9 PHX 82 37 30 15 216 231 89
10 NSH 82 38 32 12 216 242 88
11 WPG 82 37 35 10 227 237 84
12 VAN 82 36 35 11 196 223 83
13 CGY 82 35 40 7 209 241 77
14 EDM 82 29 44 9 203 270 67


J. Pavelski 82 41 38 23 79
J. Thornton 82 11 65 20 76
P. Marleau 82 33 37 0 70
L. Couture 65 23 31 21 54
B. Burns 69 22 26 26 48
T. Wingels 77 16 22 11 38
D. Boyle 75 12 24 -8 36
J. Demers 75 5 29 14 34
T. Hertl 37 15 10 11 25
M. Nieto 66 10 14 -4 24
A. Stalock 12 5 2 .932 1.87
A. Niemi 39 17 7 .913 2.39
Image Map