Sep 28, 2013; Anaheim, CA, USA; Anaheim Ducks left wing Daniel Winnik (34) keeps the puck away from San Jose Sharks defenseman Dan Boyle (22) during the first period at Honda Center. Mandatory Credit: Kelvin Kuo-USA TODAY Sports

San Jose Sharks Take On Anaheim Ducks In Must-Win: Game Preview

So it all comes down to this: the San Jose Sharks must beat the Anaheim Ducks on Wednesday night if they want to have any hope of winning the Pacific Division.

With three games remaining and the Ducks leading by three points, the Sharks face a daunting task if they want to usurp Anaheim, and it all starts with a matchup against the Ducks at the Honda Center.

The Sharks only have themselves to blame if they wind up in second; they have lost many games to inferior opponents recently, and have not been playing up to their standards (i.e. losing to Nashville 3-0 on Saturday night). This isn’t exactly what the Sharks were looking for heading into the playoffs.

However, the Ducks haven’t been impeccable either. Losses to the Predators and the Oilers have kept the Sharks within striking distance in the division standings.

Unless the Sharks want to play the Kings in the first round, they need to win the division, and step one would be beating the Ducks on Wednesday to draw within a point and extend their hopes.

Tale of the Tape

Sharks:

  • Goals for per game: 2.90 (7th)
  • Goals against per game: 2.34 (4th)
  • Shots per game: 34.8 (1st)
  • Shots against per game: 27.7 (6th)
  • Penalty minutes: 723 (5th)
  • Power play percentage: 17.4% (19th)
  • Penalty kill percentage: 84.5% (7th)

Ducks:

  • Goals for per game: 3.19 (2nd)
  • Goals against per game: 2.48 (T-10th)
  • Shots per game: 31.4 (7th)
  • Shots against per game: 28.5 (8th)
  • Penalty minutes: 872 (19th)
  • Power play percentage: 16.5% (22nd)
  • Penalty kill percentage: 81.5 (17th)

Top Performers

Sharks: Joe Pavelski (39 G, 37 A), Joe Thornton (11 G, 63 A), Patrick Marleau (32 G, 35 A)

Ducks: Ryan Getzlaf (31 G, 55 A), Corey Perry (42 G, 38 A), Nick Bonino (20 G, 27 A)

Injury Report

Sharks: Tomas Hertl (knee) and Adam Burish (hand) are out. Raffi Torres (knee) is probable.

Ducks: Cam Fowler (sprained MCL) and Tim Jackson (hand) are out.

Probable Lines

SAN JOSE (49-21-9)

Forwards

Pavelski-Thornton-Burns

Marleau-Couture-Wingels

Nieto-Sheppard-Havlat

Brown-Desjardins-Kennedy

Defensemen

Vlasic-Demers

Irwin-Boyle

Stuart-Braun

Goalies

Niemi

Stalock

ANAHEIM (51-20-8)

Forwards

Beleskey — Gezlaf  – Corey Perry

Maroon — Perreault — Selanne

Cogliano — Koivu — Silfverberg

Winnik — Bonino — Palmieri

Defensemen

Lindholm — Beauchemin

Robidas-Sbisa

Allen-Lovejoy

Goalies

Hiller

Gibson

Game Info

Opening Face-off: 7:30pm PST

Location: Honda Center, Anaheim, CA

TV: NBCSN

Tags: San Jose Sharks

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