SAN JOSE – If you watched any of the Sharks’ game against the Edmonton Oilers on Tuesday night, you never would have known this was a team playing the second night of a back-to-back, and their third game in four nights. The forward lines kept rolling, and goaltender Aaron Dell stood tall as San Jose defeated Edmonton yet again, by a score of 7-2.
Here are three takeaways from Tuesday’s game:
Opportune scoring: It sounds overused and cliché to say a team has to find different ways to score if they’re going to win games. But, that’s exactly what the Sharks did on Tuesday.
They took advantage of their power-play opportunities – thanks to a second-period marker from a red-hot Brent Burns – and got their second goal of the evening on a beautiful penalty shot from Marcus Sorensen. Heck, they even got a little puck luck thanks to three goals hitting the back of the net off deflections. If the Sharks are going to stay hot, they have to keep taking advantage of those different opportunities.
Third line stays hot, part 2: Really, what more can we say about these guys? Both Joonas Donskoi and Evander Kane had two goals on the evening. Donskoi now has seven goals in his last six games, and Kane has 17 points in a 16-game span. Tomas Hertl, clearly well-adjusted playing center, set up Kane’s game-opening tally and finished plus-3 on the evening.
Additionally, Erik Karlsson seems to like setting this line up to score goals. He collected three more apples on Tuesday, two of which were on goals generated by that third line. Karlsson now has 25 points in his last 14 games.
Aaron Dell is clutch: The Sharks’ backup netminder needed a good start on Tuesday. After having a strong start to his 2018-19 campaign, Dell had a rough few outings -- including the New Year’s Eve loss to the Calgary Flames. He did just that, holding down the fort on the back end and even freezing Oilers superstar Connor McDavid a couple of times on Edmonton’s power play.
Dell’s performance on Tuesday was a good endorsement for the Sharks’ goaltending on a whole. Martin Jones has cut down on the number of goals he’s given up over the last couple of games, and Dell complimented those starts with one of his own. If San Jose is going to continue being this competitive, it helps to have both goalies playing so well.