Facing elimination in Game 5 of their first-round Stanley Cup playoff series, the Sharks will turn to goaltender Martin Jones on Thursday night against the Vegas Golden Knights, Jones and coach Peter DeBoer told reporters Wednesday.
Jones says he's starting tomorrow— Sheng Peng (@Sheng_Peng) April 17, 2019
I'm at Sharks today, and Peter DeBoer says Martin Jones is in goal tomorrow night. Also: Vlasic a possibility to play in Game 5.— Susan Slusser (@susanslusser) April 17, 2019
Jones was pulled in a 5-0 loss in Game 4 on Tuesday, after giving up two goals on seven shots. It was the second consecutive game in which Jones allowed a goal on the first shot he faced, and his struggles in the Stanley Cup playoffs continued.
In four starts, Jones has posted an .838 save percentage and 5.33 goals-against average. He has faced a higher rate of high-danger shots (13.13 per hour, according to Natural Stat Trick) than any other goalie this postseason, but his playoff performance largely has been a continuation of his regular-season play.
[RELATED: Jones avoids media after Game 4 loss]
The Sharks' starter ranked 61st out of 70 goalies who made at least 10 appearances in save percentage (.896), and dead-last in 5-on-5 save percentage out of 56 goalies who played at least 1,000 minutes at full strength. Backup goaltender Aaron Dell, who relieved Jones in Games 2 and 4, wasn't much better in the regular season or in relief for Jones in this series.
Jones will need to quickly turn things around if the Sharks are going to fend off elimination in Game 5 of the best-of-seven series.