San Jose Sharks Blitzed By Senators In Third-Period Meltdown


Mar 23, 2015; Ottawa, Ontario, CAN; San Jose Sharks goalie Antii Niemi (31) blocks a shot from Ottawa Senators right wing Erik Condra (22) in the second period at the Canadian Tire Centre. Mandatory Credit: Marc DesRosiers-USA TODAY Sports

Same story, different setting for the San Jose Sharks who look like a team that can’t wait for this season to mercilessly come to an end.

Meanwhile, the Ottawa Senators are a team brimming with confidence who preyed on the helpless Sharks Monday night. Ottawa scored four unanswered goals in the third period to come-from-behind and pound San Jose 5-2 for the seventh straight victory.

The Senators continued their recent run of form by getting on the board first when Mika Zibanejad netted his 18th goal of the season to give Ottawa a 1-0 lead. It was a fairly even first period with each team registering 10 shots on goal although the Sharks didn’t test Andrew Hammond all that often.

However, things would turn in favor of San Jose just past the midway point of the second period. The Sharks would get the first power play of the game and who else but Joe Pavelski would dive and backhand home a rebound in front to even the score at one. It was Pavelski’s 35th goal of the season and his 18th power play goal, good for second in the league behind Alexander Ovechkin.

San Jose wasted little time in taking the lead as 30 seconds later Tommy Wingels would feed rookie Chris Tierney who ripped a shot passed Hammond for his third goal of the year, giving the Sharks a 2-1 lead as the second period ended. All three of Tierney’s goals this season have come against Canadian teams as his other two goals both came against the Vancouver Canucks.

Ottawa was determined to extend their winning streak to seven games and dominated San Jose in the final frame. First, Zibanejad would get his second goal of the night when he lifted Tierney’s stick in front and buried a shot past Antti Niemi at the 2:19 mark.

The Ottawa surge continued from that point onward as the Senators would take the lead for good when Alex Chiasson tipped home his 11th of the season to give Ottawa a 3-2 lead. It would get much worse for San Jose as just 1:12 later, Erik Karlsson would set up Jean-Gabriel Pageau on a three-on-one opportunity for his sixth goal of the season which buried the Sharks. Mike Hoffman would add an empty-net goal for the final icing on the cake of another third period meltdown for the boys in teal and white.

In an all too familiar sight for San Jose, the Sharks coughed up a lead by allowing an early goal in the third period and they fell flat on their faces after that. In both games against the Senators this season, the Sharks have held 2-1 leads heading into the final frame and have watched Ottawa storm back on both occasions. In an absurd stat, the Senators have outscored San Jose 7-0 during the third period in their two meetings.

Todd McLellan talked about the Sharks needing to play like a desperate team earlier in the day; however, when things got tough, they looked like a deflated one instead. It’s frustrating to see this team wilt under the pressure time and time again. At this point, the season can’t end fast enough for a stumbling franchise that needs to regroup and do plenty of soul-searching this offseason.

For Sharks fans everywhere, take solace in the fact that there are only eight more games remaining in what will be remembered as a wasted season by a team that could never get out of their own way and fell apart at the seams when it truly mattered the most.

More from Sharks News