Saturday evening, the round two match-up between the Los Angeles Kings and the San Jose Sharks shifted to the Shark Tank, and with the change in scenery came a change in the result: San Jose finally broke into the win column with a 2-1 overtime victory against the reigning Stanley Cup champions.
Game 4 will be played Tuesday night in the Shark Tank, and the question on my mind is, are the Sharks in a position to make a series out of this, or did their victory obscure the fact that they are dead in the water, with no hope of winning four games in this series?
There’s not much doubt that the Sharks have been the aggressors on offense so far this series, out-shooting the Kings in two out of the three games (they tied for SOG in game 2) and averaging 35 shots a night. They managed to score three times on Jonathan Quick in game 2, and were in control of most of that game until a few late penalties gave LA new life. Their power play has been hit-or-miss, but they did manage to earn two power play goals in game 3, which could be an ominous sign for the Kings should San Jose’s power play get back on track (3rd best in the NHL during the regular season). With another game in one of the NHL’s most intimidating arenas, the Sharks could turn the tide of this series if they win game 4 and square everything up.
On the other hand, as aggressive as the Sharks have been shot-wise, they were a questionable penalty away from squandering their return home to the Shark Tank Saturday night. Had Trevor Lewis not been called for goalie interference with just under 5 seconds remaining in regulation, overtime could very well have been dominated by Mr. Quick, who certainly would have had a much clearer head than he did upon witnessing that questionable call. After all, San Jose opened OT with a 5-on-3 advantage and failed to score on the first power play, meaning that Lewis’ penalty gave them a second power play that most people argue the Sharks didn’t deserve. They capitalized on it, but they certainly cannot feel too confident about needing a controversial call late in regulation to give them the edge required to win. You better believe Los Angeles is going to have some extra fuel for their competitive fire when game 4 comes around, and San Jose has proven to be the team most likely to commit unnecessary penalties late in these hotly-contested games. Will LA’s pressure force the Sharks to lose their composure?
I’m on the fence, but find myself feeling that Los Angeles will find a way to win game 4 of this series. What do you think?
Are the San Jose Sharks Predators, or Dead in the Water?
- Predators! They will come back to win this. (63%, 15 Votes)
- Dead in the Water! No way LA loses this thing. (37%, 9 Votes)
Total Voters: 24