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San Jose
Sharks
43-29-10
Colorado
Avalanche
41-35-6

18 SOG
37 SOG
1st2nd3rdT
SJS
COL
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game preview

Sharks go for back-to-back wins in Colorado

Wednesday, 08.06.2014 / 1:49 AM

Davis Harper - NHL.com Staff Writer

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Sharks go for back-to-back wins in Colorado
San Jose Sharks vs. Colorado Avalanche

SHARKS (11-5-1) at AVALANCHE (9-10-1)

TV: CSN-California (HD), ALTITUDE (HD)

Last 10:
San Jose 7-2-1; Colorado 3-6-1.

Season Series: This is the first of four meetings between the teams. San Jose took three of four from Colorado in 2010-11, including a 2-1 shootout win on March 1.

Big Story:
Colorado is hopeful that what transpired Friday is a sign of things to come. While the Avs are winners of just two of nine, they want to use a 3-0 victory against the Dallas Stars as a way to build momentum. Meanwhile, San Jose is rolling right along atop the Pacific Division with wins in five of its last seven.

Team Scope:


Sharks:
On Sunday, San Jose will bring its impressive 6-2 road mark - including Saturday's 4-1 throttling of Dallas - to the Pepsi Center.

"For whatever reason, we're confident on the road," Joe Thornton said after the Dallas game. "We like playing on the road. It took us a while to get into the game, but we got our legs and got going."

Getting into the game early will be key to San Jose's success. The Sharks are 6-0-0 when scoring first.

"I think that [scoring the first goal] was important for us," coach Todd McLellan said. "They had us on our heels. They really did in the first period. Prior to the game, we talked about composure and discipline. We know they have taken a ton of penalties. We thought that would come into play at some point. "

Avalanche: After losing two straight on the road and seven of eight overall, Colorado kicked off an eight-game homestand with Friday's win. The shutout was Jean-Sebastien Giguere's first since the 2008 playoffs, and the win was only Colorado's third of the season in nine games at home.

Before the game, coach Joe Sacco shuffled all four lines in an effort to revive his flat-lining offense, and it was his fourth line - and Chuck Kobasew -- who responded with the only goal through two periods.

"Like I said before, when things don't go well, when you're going through a tough stretch, I'm not afraid to shake things up," Sacco said. "I thought they all played well and were very effective."

Who's Hot: Giguere has won two of his last three decisions and allowed only one goal in the loss. The veteran is earning more playing time because Semyon Varlamov is winless in his last six decisions. … Matt Duchene has three goals in his last four games for Colorado.

Injury Report:
Colorado center Mark Olver and winger Peter Mueller are on injured reserve with head injuries. … San Jose is healthy except for backup goalie Antero Niittymaki, who's recovering from abdominal surgery.

Stat Pack: Colorado possesses the second-best power-play conversion rate (26.1 percent) in the League, but during its losing streak it looked like one of the worst. Paul Stastny broke an 0-for-12 skid Friday night with his man-advantage rebound goal. … San Jose trails close behind the Avalanche in the power-play department at 22.6 percent and was 2-for-5 Saturday.

Puck Drop: "We've been playing hard lately without much success. We really bore down tonight and did a lot of good things, shot a lot of pucks. Our power play came through at the end and we stayed disciplined and played well defensively. That's the kind of game we have to play at home." - Giguere on his team's progression.

2011-2012 season series
DateScoreW. Goal
Mar 26 '12COL 1 at SJS 5A. Desjardins
Dec 15 '11COL 4 at SJS 5L. Couture
Dec 13 '11SJS 3 at COL 4 - SOG. Landeskog
Nov 20 '11SJS 4 at COL 1P. Marleau
PlayerGPGAP+/-PIMPPGW
J. Thornton1851520+8601
J. Pavelski1811819+9631
P. Marleau1891019+4832
L. Couture187714+4611
R. Clowe184913-13520
M. Vlasic182911+11201
D. Boyle181910+22611
M. Havlat14189+41010
B. Burns18437+4031
M. Handzus18235+4410
T. Mitchell15235+1600
J. McGinn18224+5700
B. Winchester18224+01500
A. Desjardins17224+02101
D. Murray18033+81900
J. Demers9022-3600
J. Vandermeer5022+41000
B. Ferriero4101+0001
A. Murray18011+2400
J. Braun9011+3400
T. Wingels3011+0400
C. White14000-4600
GoalieGPRec.GASAGAASv%
A. Niemi128-2-1283302.52.915
T. Greiss74-3-0141981.99.929
PlayerGPGAP+/-PIMPPGW
M. Duchene219716-1241
K. Quincey2131114-32031
M. Hejduk217613-21041
P. Stastny216713-4620
D. Jones217512-51221
R. O'Reilly2121012-5210
R. Wilson2111112+31800
G. Landeskog215510-11011
E. Johnson21099-12400
D. Winnik21347-51600
S. O'Brien21077+14300
J. Lindstrom15235-8010
J. Hejda21145-15400
C. Kobasew20314-61001
J. McClement19213-2600
R. O'Byrne21123-21800
T. Galiardi18123-4800
C. McLeod19011-23500
K. Porter7000-3000
B. Yip3000+0200
P. Mueller3000+0000
M. Hunwick1000-1000
GoalieGPRec.GASAGAASv%
S. Varlamov145-8-1454103.30.890
J. Giguere84-3-0141841.85.924