Oilers ripped apart by Sharks, series tied 2-2

Since the club rallied from a two-goal deficit in Game 1 to post a 3-2 overtime victory, San Jose has not had anyone notch a point as Cam Talbot turned aside all 39 shots he faced to register back-to-back shutouts and give Edmonton a 2-1 series lead.

The San Jose Sharks will look to even their series with the Edmonton Oilers in game 4 of their National Hockey League playoff series. Certainly Talbot does not bear sole responsibility for the loss because he had no appreciable defensive help.

For the second consecutive game, Cam Talbot had a shutout and Zack Kassian scored the winning goal for the Oilers in the game -3.

Game 5 will be played Thursday night in Edmonton, with the sixth game Saturday night in San Jose.

Then a power play that had been worse than worthless in the first three games (scoring once in 14 chances while giving up two shorthanded goals) joined the fight at 11:02 on Couture's first of the series. I have Gary on the phone right now and we're about to sign off on the terms of the punishment. But the fact that they have overcome their imperfections and put themselves in the driver's seat against the defending Western Conference champions bodes pretty well for their future, both in the short- and long-term.

By the end of the second period, the Rogers Place fans were chanting "Kass-ee-ann! I don't think it's a secret that as our key guys are getting healthier and feeling better we're starting to look better in that area".

The Sharks' power play has suffered from the absence of dominant center Joe Thornton. "In one-goal games, it can go either way".

"There's a mandate here in San Jose, effective Game 3 of the Stanley Cup playoffs Round 1", Dreger said.

It paid off immediately when Pavelski won an offensive zone faceoff back to Justin Braun and then deflected a point shot past Talbot for the fastest goal in Sharks playoff history.

Two weeks after suffering a left knee injury, Thornton made a dramatic return to the lineup Sunday for the Sharks in their first home playoff game since June 12 of previous year when Sidney Crosby and Pittsburgh Penguins were awarded the Stanley Cup.

"We've been saying we have confidence in it", Joe Thornton said. And they were. In Game 6.

The Oilers showed their frustration at the 13:44 mark of the second period. On Friday, he broke free killing a penalty midway through the third, racing down the left side to fire a low shortside wrist shot past Sharks goalie Martin Jones to seal the win.

While Thornton returned, the Sharks' ineffective power play also made the trip back to the South Bay. Edmonton jumped out to a 2-0 lead in that game but was suffocated by a relentless San Jose forecheck after that.

"We're confident in him back there", Edmonton forward Jordan Eberle said.

"He's been so good for us all year, playing a physical game", Klefbom said of Larsson. "Big saves, timely saves, especially early on when they had all their momentum, he was great for us". This is why coaches get paid big money.

"We need to find a way to score", captain Joe Pavelski said. "If we get out of the way when the whistle goes we're fine".

  • Julie Sanders