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Sharks-Kings Preview

Wednesday, 08.06.2014 / 1:49 AM

Associated Press

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Sharks-Kings Preview
San Jose Sharks vs. Los Angeles Kings

San Jose has been one of the league's top road teams over the past few seasons. The Los Angeles Kings have been a big reason for the Sharks' success.

Concluding their stretch of three straight road games to open the season, the Sharks (1-1-0) will try to continue their success against the Kings (0-1-0) at Staples Center tonight at 7:30 PM.

San Jose, however, will be without gritty center Joe Pavelski, who will miss at least two weeks with a lower-body injury suffered at Anaheim. A key factor on both special teams units, Pavelski had career highs with 25 goals and 34 assists last season. He had two assists through the first two games this season.

Kings coach Terry Murray expects his club to adapt seamlessly.

"I think they're just going to reinforce it and let their good players and skill take over, and play the right way," Murray told the team's official Web site.

Marleau, who will switch from left wing to center in Pavelski's absence, scored three of his career-high 38 goals last season versus the Kings.

New acquisition Dany Heatley added two assists for his first points with his new club in San Jose's 4-1 win at Anaheim on Saturday, in a rematch of last season's first-round playoff series won by the Ducks.

The Sharks should feel good about Saturday's contribution from Heatley, who bounced back after a minus-3 effort against the Avalanche. The former 50-goal scorer will likely have plenty of chances to pile up the points on a line with veteran Joe Thornton and rising star Devin Setoguchi.

"It's going to take a little time to jell as a line, we had a couple preseason games where we were on a roll a little bit," said Heatley, who has two goals and one assist in six games against Los Angeles."I thought we skated well. For us to do well, that's the key. All three of us have to move our feet and skate."

Evgeni Nabokov, who made 24 saves for the Sharks on Saturday, is 22-12-1 with two ties and a 2.03 goals-against average against the Kings.

The Sharks (1-1-0), who bounced back after losing 5-2 at Colorado two nights earlier, now make the short trip north to Los Angeles before facing Columbus in their home opener Thursday.

San Jose went 21-13-7 on the road in 2008-09, and has averaged 24 wins away from home over the last three seasons. That includes an 11-4-0 mark at Los Angeles, and two wins in three visits last season.

Anze Kopitar and Drew Doughty each had a goal with an assist for Los Angeles in Saturday's season opener - one of three straight home games to open the season - but the Kings fell 6-3 to Phoenix.

Kopitar has scored at least 20 goals in each of his first three NHL seasons and has seven career goals against the Sharks, but was held without a point as the Kings went 1-3-2 versus San Jose in the 2008-09 season series.

Jon Quick is expected to be back in net in this contest for Los Angeles. Quick, who is 11-8-1 lifetime in games following a loss, made 27 saves to win his only previous appearance against San Jose, a 4-3 win April 11.

2009-2010 season series
DateScoreW. Goal
Jan 19 '10 SJS 5 at LAK 1 D. Boyle
Jan 11 '10 SJS 2 at LAK 1 D. Heatley
Jan 04 '10 LAK 6 at SJS 2 A. Kopitar
Dec 09 '09 LAK 5 at SJS 4 - OT D. Brown
Oct 28 '09 LAK 1 at SJS 2 - SO R. Clowe
Oct 06 '09 SJS 4 at LAK 6 T. Purcell
J. Thornton3145-3000
D. Heatley3145-4610
P. Marleau3303+0211
D. Setoguchi3303-3030
R. Blake3112-2410
J. Demers3022+1200
D. Boyle3022-2400
J. Pavelski2022+2000
B. Ferriero3101-2000
F. McLaren2011+1000
S. Nichol3000-11000
J. Shelley3000-12200
M. Malhotra3000-1200
K. Huskins3000-1200
R. Clowe3000-1900
J. Ortmeyer3000-1200
D. Murray3000-31000
M. Vlasic3000-3000
B. Staubitz1000+0200
J. McGinn1000-1200
E. Nabokov31-1-010653.95.846
T. Greiss10-1-0192.22.889
A. Kopitar2235+0010
D. Doughty2123+1410
R. Smyth2123-1410
D. Drewiske2112+2000
A. Frolov2112+1410
M. Handzus2022+1000
J. Stoll2022+0200
D. Brown2022+0000
T. Purcell2101+0001
W. Simmonds2101+0500
J. Johnson2101-1200
J. Williams2011+1000
P. Harrold1011+1000
M. Greene2000+0000
R. Ivanans2000-1500
B. Richardson2000-1000
T. Lewis2000-1000
R. Scuderi2000-2000
A. Martinez1000-2000
J. Quick21-1-010595.00.831
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