SAN JOSE – Matthew Tkachuk scored twice, including the tiebreaker in the third period, to push the Flames over the Sharks at SAP Center on Thursday night, 3-2.
After San Jose fought back from a 2-0 hole after two periods, Tkachuk was left wide open while cutting to the net and maneuvered a Michael Frolik dish over the line at 15:39.
The Sharks’ four-game home winning streak to start the season was snapped, as they fell to 6-5-0 on the season. Calgary improved to 5-6-1.
The Sharks got back into the game on a power play that carried over from late in the second, as Brent Burns unleashed a howitzer that beat Chad Johnson just 35 seconds into the final frame. It was his fourth of the season.
The equalizer came midway through the third. Chris Tierney won an offensive zone faceoff to Marc-Edouard Vlasic, and a point shot towards the net was tipped barely through by Melker Karlsson at 9:18.
Rather than forcing overtime and getting at least a point out of game, though, the Sharks couldn’t sort out a Calgary rush that ended up in Tkachuk’s second score. The 18-year-old, who was the sixth overall pick in the 2016 draft, was notified earlier in the day that he would not be returning to his junior club.
After an uninspiring first period in which it failed on three power play attempts, San Jose had the territorial advantage through most of the second of what was still a scoreless tie. Rather than getting that all-important first goal, though, the Flames’ Troy Brouwer was left alone in the slot whack home a Michael Ferland pass at 16:32.
One minute and 33 seconds later, Tkachuk’s shot deflected off of Vlasic’s stick and through Martin Jones’ legs to increase Calgary’s lead to 2-0 after two.
The Sharks’ lines continued to be shuffled throughout the second half of the game, including Tomas Hertl returning to the top line left wing.
The Sharks finished 1-for-5 on the power play. Burns’ goal was his first with a man advantage (and fourth overall).
Calgary was 0-for-2. The Sharks are a perfect 17-for-17 on the PK over their last six games.
The Flames have allowed at least one power play goal in 10 of their 12 games.
Jones was making his seventh straight start in net, appearing in his 10th game out of 11. He allowed three goals on 22 shots in dropping to an even 5-5-0 on the season.
Johnson got the call ahead of Brian Elliott, who joined the Flames from St. Louis in the offseason and had started the previous five. Johnson improved to 2-1 with 26 saves.
Tommy Wingels left the game midway through regulation after blocking a Brett Kulak shot, but returned to the bench for the third period.
Karlsson and Joonas Donskoi were both hurt in the second period and required visits to the dressing room, but both were back in short order.
Veteran defenseman Dennis Wideman was a healthy scratch for Calgary.
The Sharks host the Penguins in San Jose for the first time since Pittsburgh won the Stanley Cup at SAP Center on June 12. The Penguins erased a two-goal deficit to start the second period and claim a 3-2 win over the Sharks in Pittsburgh on Oct. 20.