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Sharks Face a Playoff Pursuing Blue Jackets

Wednesday, 08.06.2014 / 1:50 AM

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Sharks Face a Playoff Pursuing Blue Jackets
San Jose Sharks vs. Columbus Blue Jackets

SHARKS (42-17-7) at BLUE JACKETS (34-26-5)


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

Season series: The San Jose Sharks and Columbus Blue Jackets play for the second and final time this season. Goals from forwards John McCarthy and Tommy Wingels sent the Sharks into the Olympic break with a 3-2 win against the Blue Jackets on Feb. 8.

Big story: The Sharks moved closer to the Anaheim Ducks for the top spot of the Pacific Division with a 6-2 win against the Toronto Maple Leafs on Tuesday. They open a three-game road trip against the Blue Jackets, winners of five of six, 16-6-1 in their past 23 games and 15-4-1 in their past 20 games at Nationwide Arena.

Columbus defeated the Detroit Red Wings 4-1 on Tuesday to move into seventh place in the Eastern Conference and third place in the Metropolitan Division, one of the automatic playoff spots.

Team Scope:

Sharks: San Jose used a dominant second period, in which it outshot Toronto 15-1 in the first 11:47, to take a 4-1 lead and put the game away.

"We had a lot of zone time," forward Joe Pavelski said after defeating the Maple Leafs. "We got on top of them a couple times. They had a few long shifts just by us controlling the puck down low. Guys had some good changes. All the things that you need to do to kind of create the momentum, we did."

The Sharks, however, need to improve their power play. San Jose went 0-for-6 with the man advantage Tuesday and is 2-for-54 in the past 17 games.

Blue Jackets: Columbus defeated Detroit thanks to the efforts of goalie Sergei Bobrovsky (39 saves) and three third-period goals that snapped a 1-1 tie. The Blue Jackets were playing 24 hours after their game against the Dallas Stars was postponed with 13:37 remaining in the first period when the Stars' Rich Peverley collapsed on the bench.

''It was a pretty rough start for us,'' said left wing Nick Foligno. ''We didn't come out the way we wanted to, but we battled back. Bob was outstanding in the first to kind of keep us in it. Then we just took over in the third period.''

The Blue Jackets will play the Sharks without forward Blake Comeau, who was suspended two games for boarding Red Wings defenseman Brendan Smith.

Who's hot: Sharks goalie Antti Niemi stopped 19 of 21 shots Tuesday to win his third straight game. Pavelski had two goals and an assist against the Maple Leafs to give him 34 goals and 31 assists with a plus-24 rating … Blue Jackets center Artem Anisimov has six goals in his past seven games. Bobrovsky has won five of his past six games.

2013-2014 season series
DateScoreW. Goal
Mar 13 '14 SJS 4 at CBJ 3 - SO J. Pavelski
Feb 07 '14 CBJ 2 at SJS 3 T. Wingels
J. Pavelski67343266+2328113
J. Thornton6795564+191623
P. Marleau67283159+51882
L. Couture51182543+171433
T. Wingels62152136+103507
B. Burns54181634+262412
J. Demers6132730+152410
D. Boyle6081927-42461
T. Hertl35151025+11233
M. Vlasic6751823+293400
M. Nieto5391120+21212
M. Irwin5021618-13310
J. Braun6741216+162011
T. Kennedy5441216-43001
A. Desjardins6621315-48401
J. Sheppard5221113+23100
M. Havlat346612+6800
S. Hannan463912+75100
B. Stuart51369+62903
R. Torres5325+4700
M. Brown47235-98300
B. Kearns22314+1610
J. McCarthy36112-11400
E. Hayes15101-2200
M. Pelech6101+12201
F. Hamilton11000-5200
A. Burish8000-2400
A. Niemi5232-13-612013672.36.912
A. Stalock2011-4-1334791.91.931
R. Johansen66262450+13041
B. Dubinsky60132841+59232
J. Wisniewski5963339+25120
N. Foligno60171936+58335
C. Atkinson64181634-11444
A. Anisimov65191433+11624
R. Umberger66181533-22283
M. Letestu6681927-11631
J. Johnson6642125-54430
F. Tyutin5342024+63010
B. Jenner5612921+73924
R. Murray6131720+31020
M. Calvert4071118+14211
D. MacKenzie557815+23100
N. Horton2641115-32022
N. Nikitin5821315+111801
M. Gaborik226814+0600
D. Savard544913-12411
B. Comeau463912-32500
C. Tropp432911+42800
M. Frattin42246-61110
D. Prout35145-43300
N. Schultz64055-122600
J. Skille12404+2401
J. Boll21101-63800
M. Chaput17011+0200
S. Collins6011+1000
R. Craig6000-3000
C. Goloubef5000+0200
T. Erixon2000+2200
C. Bass1000+0500
S. Bobrovsky4525-16-410713112.50.918
C. McElhinney238-9-1566002.83.907
M. McKenna41-1-1111143.01.904
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