2. Sharks Advance To Stanley Cup Final For First Time
After a thrilling victory in Game 5 against the St. Louis Blues, San Jose returned home to a frenzied atmosphere inside the Shark Tank as team teal looked to clinch a berth in their first-ever Stanley Cup Final.
Who else but Joe Pavelski got the party started at the 3:57 mark of the opening frame when he corralled the puck behind the net and stuffed it in behind Brian Elliott to give the Sharks the 1-0 lead. That goal kept the home fans riled up as there was a palpable buzz all game long.
After holding a 1-0 lead after 20 minutes, big game Joel Ward would double the San Jose lead, tipping home a Brent Burns shot from the point to continue the Shark assault. While St. Louis came with a push at the end of the second, Martin Jones was able to stand tall including robbing Jori Lehtera on the doorstep.
Then, team teal would go for the knockout blow early in the third period. Logan Couture set up Ward with a beautiful pass for his second of the night at the 3:01 mark, and five minutes later, Couture, Patrick Marleau and Joonas Donskoi executed a perfect 3-on-2 that led to Donskoi’s fifth of the playoffs to give San Jose a 4-0 lead.
From that moment on, the party was officially on as Sharks fans everywhere were dreaming of the ultimate prize which always seemed elusive.
A pair of Vladimir Tarasenko goals late in the third period made things interesting, but when Couture found the empty net with 20 seconds left, it was clear that San Jose was heading to the Stanley Cup Final.
It was a truly memorable night for Sharks nation which had waited 25 years for this opportunity.