Tonight the San Jose Sharks return home after their four game road trip. On the road trip San Jose recorded a 2-2 record, which included 3-2 shootout victory in Detroit and a 4-0 shutout against the desert dogs. The Sharks welcome into town the LA Kings for the second time of the season, with tonight’s contest being the third of four scheduled meetings on the season. As of right now, both teams are 1-1 on the season series with each victory being won on home ice. The Sharks defeated the Kings 4-3 back on March 14th, while the Kings defeated the Sharks 5-2 two night later on March 16th. Tonight’s game is not your ordinary hockey game, in fact it is a battle for the fourth seed overall in the Western Conference playoff picture. Thus meaning, a Sharks victory over the Kings guarantees them home ice advantage in the opening round of the 2013 Stanley Cup Playoffs.
In their last 10 games, both teams hold identical records of 6-2-2. Entering today, the Sharks are currently positioned in third place of the Pacific Division and fifth overall in the West with a 22-13-7 record and 51 points. For the visiting LA Kings, they are in third place of the Pacific and fourth overall in the Western Conference that includes a record of 24-14-4 and 52 points.
Tale of The Tape Report:
San Jose Sharks:
Los Angeles Kings:
Sharks: San Jose bounced back nicely from Saturday’s 2-1 loss to the Dallas Stars by cruising past a Phoenix club that was desperate for points. Antti Niemi stopped all 35 shots he faced for his fourth shutout of the season, while Tommy Wingels had a goal and an assist.
“We’ve got a big game tomorrow night we’re all looking forward to and it was good to get this one first,” said center Logan Couture, who had the first of San Jose’s three second-period goals. “We had a good second period. We got pucks behind them and when we roll over our four lines we’re a tough team to beat.”
Kings: Los Angeles is coming off back-to-back victories, as the defending Stanley Cup champs made it two in a row with Saturday’s 2-1 win against the Pacific Division leading Anaheim Ducks at Staples Center. Drew Doughty had a goal and an assist for the Kings, while Jonathan Quick made 19 saves.
“I liked our team,” Kings coach Darryl Sutter said “We just finished seven of 11 on the road, and the White House [visit], and managed to still win our home games while we were doing it. Without having one off anywhere there, with all that traveling, I think all of our guys did a good job.”
Who’s hot: Doughty has goals in four of his past five games for Los Angeles. Two of those tallies have come via the power play. … Niemi has allowed two or fewer goals in three straight starts.
****Team Scope/Who’s Hot Report: Courtesy of the San Jose Sharks.****
Injury Front Report:
Sharks: Scott Hannan (neck) is questionable.
***Injury Report: Courtesy of Kevin Kurz.***
Today’s contest has a 7:30p PST puck drop and can be seen on CSNCA HD and can be heard on 98.5/102.1 KFOX. In addition, the game is being broadcasting nationally on the NBC Sports Network.
LET’S GO SHARKS!!!!!!!!
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