Jan 23, 2014; San Jose, CA, USA; Winnipeg Jets center Bryan Little (18) shoots the puck as San Jose Sharks defenseman Marc-Edouard Vlasic (44) and center Andrew Desjardins (10) defend during the first period at SAP Center at San Jose. Mandatory Credit: Kelley L Cox-USA TODAY Sports

San Jose Sharks Look to Take Season Series Against Jets: Game Preview


The San Jose Sharks may have clinched a playoff spot, but there are further goals to accomplish: goals such as holding off the Ducks in their division, or winning the Presidents Trophy, or raising Lord Stanley’s Cup.

In order to do so, they must take things one step at a time and take advantage of home games against inferior opponents, such as a matchup against the Winnipeg Jets on Thursday night.

The Jets, well out of a playoff spot and losers of three of their last four, would like nothing more than to play the role of spoiler. The Sharks stand just two points ahead of the Ducks in the Pacific Division, and the Ducks have two games in hand to boot.

San Jose, which is coming off a convincing 5-2 win in Edmonton on Tuesday, is in a stretch where it plays four games in six nights.  The Sharks will look to take the season series against the Jets, who defeated the Sharks 5-4 back in November in a shootout. The Sharks defeated the Jets 1-0 at home in January.

Tale of the Tape

Sharks

  • Goals for per game: 2.93 (7th)
  • Goals against per game: 2.30 (4th)
  • Shots per game: 34.9 (1st)
  • Shots against per game: 27.7 (5th)
  • Penalty minutes: 668 (5th)
  • Power play percentage: 16.8% (19th)
  • Penalty kill percentage: 85.1% (5th)

Jets:

  • Goals for per game: 2.68 (17th)
  • Goals against per game: 2.84 (21st)
  • Shots per game: 30.9 (10th)
  • Shots against per game: 30.3 (17th)
  • Penalty minutes: 913 (24th)
  • Power play percentage: 14.9% (26th)
  • Penalty kill percentage: 84.1% (8th)

Top Performers

Sharks: Joe Pavelski (37 G, 34 A),  Joe Thornton (11 G, 60 A), Patrick Marleau (31 G, 33 A)

Jets: Blake Wheeler (24 G, 35 A), Bryan Little (22 G, 35 A), Dustin Byfuglien (19 G, 33 A)

Injury Report

Sharks: Tomas Hertl (knee) is on IR. Adam Burish (hand) is out. Raffi Torres (soreness) and Logan Couture (lower body) did not play on Tuesday.

Jets: Chris Thorburn (ankle), Mark Scheifele (knee), Ondrej Pavelec (lower body) and James Wright (ankle) are out.

Probable Lines

SAN JOSE (47-18-9)

Forwards

Sheppard-Thornton-Burns

Kennedy-Marleau-Nieto

Wingels-Pavelski-Havlat

Brown-Desjardins-TBD

Defensemen

Vlasic-Demers

Irwin-Boyle

Stuart-Braun

Goalies

Niemi

Stalock

WINNIPEG (32-32-9)

Forwards

Kane-Little-Frolik

Byfuglien-Jokinen-Wheeler

O’Dell-Slater-Setoguchi

Tangradi-Cormier-Peluso

Defensemen

Stuart-Trouba

Enstrom-Ellerby

Pardy-Postma

Goalies

Montoya

Hutchinson

Game Info

Opening Face-off: 7:30 PM PST

Location: SAP Center, San Jose, CA

TV: LOCAL

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