Sharks re-sign forwards Karlsson, Donskoi


Sharks re-sign forwards Karlsson, Donskoi

The Sharks re-signed forwards Melker Karlsson and Joonas Donskoi, the team announced on Friday.

Karlsson's deal is for three years and Donskoi's contract is for two years.

"Melker plays an up-tempo, high-energy game and brings flexibility to our lineup wherever he plays," GM Doug Wilson said in a statement. "His tenacious style of play fits our team perfectly, and we feel confident using him in many different situations. He kills penalties, can play with high-end players and brings an honest effort night in and night out. We're excited he has made this commitment to the organization."

Karlsson, 26, recorded 22 points (11 goals, 11 assists), 73 shots on goal and set career highs in both plus/minus (+7) and penalty minutes (22) in a career-best 67 games played with the Sharks in 2016-17. He finished ranked T-5th on the team in goals, T-6th in plus/minus, T-1st in shorthanded goals (2) and 3rd amongst Sharks forwards in blocked shots (59). He skated the third-most shorthanded minutes per game amongst all Sharks forwards (1:34).

The forward has collected 65 points (34 goals, 31 assists) and a plus-9 rating in 185 career NHL games with San Jose. He was named the "Sharks Rookie of the Year" in 2014-15, after finishing ranked 7th amongst all NHL rookies in goals and T-15th in points. Karlsson tied a franchise-best goal scoring streak for rookies, tallying a goal in five consecutive contests. He has also added nine points (six goals, three assists) in 30 career NHL playoff games.

"Joonas plays a solid two-way game, combining his skill and creativity with an aggressive, hard-working effort in all three zones," Wilson said. "He plays the game the way we want to play as a team, and we feel he has only scratched the surface of his abilities. He battled through multiple injuries last season and we look forward to having him healthy at training camp this season."

Donskoi, 25, recorded 17 points (six goals, 11 assists), and 10 penalty minutes in 61 games with San Jose in 2016-17, his second season in the NHL. The forward ranked 4th on San Jose in power-play points (4) and his plus-83 shot attempt differential ranked 8th on the Sharks.

In 137 career NHL games, Donskoi has tallied 53 points (17 goals, 36 assists) and 202 shots on goal. He was named the "Sharks Rookie of the Year" in 2015-16, and posted 12 points (six goals, six assists) in 24 playoff games that season with San Jose. Donskoi became just the sixth rookie in NHL history to score an overtime, game-winning goal in the Stanley Cup Final when he scored in Game 3 vs. Pittsburgh. That goal also marked the first game-winning goal in Sharks franchise history in the Stanley Cup Final.

San Jose Sharks media services contributed to this story


Sharks come out flat in Game 1, get crushed 7-0 by Vegas


Sharks come out flat in Game 1, get crushed 7-0 by Vegas


The Anaheim Ducks scored their fourth goal in the first round against the Sharks 227:53 into the series. The Vegas Golden Knights needed less than 12 minutes.

San Jose ultimately gave up five in a 23:28 span, and dropped Game 1 of the second round in Sin City 7-0. Cody Eakin, Erik Haula, and Jonathan Marchessault scored in a 91-second span early in the first period to all but seal the game, while Alex Tuch, Shea Theodore, Colin Miller, and James Neal each added another to put it well out of reach.

The Sharks reeled from the very beginning. 63 seconds in, Tomas Hertl took a high-sticking penalty, and a minute after he left the box, an unmarked Cody Eakin tipped Brayden McNabb’s point shot past Martin Jones to open the scoring.

Erik Haula scored 26 seconds later, and the Golden Knights held a 2-0 lead before the clock struck five minutes. Vegas winger James Neal tied up and threw down San Jose defenseman Brenden Dillon in the neutral zone, leaving center Logan Couture as one of the last men back. Alex Tuch stickhandled around him, and left a pass for Haula to snap by Jones.

The Golden Knights scored their third goal off of another zone entry on the very next shot. Reilly Smith found fellow former Florida Panther Marchessault for his first of the postseason, while Sharks blueliner Brent Burns hesitated to step out on him as Smith fired a short side shot from the face-off dot.

After Marchessault scored at the 6:02, Vegas had more five-on-five goals (three) than San Jose had five-on-five shot attempts (one).

Kevin Labanc and Burns later took penalties 48 seconds apart midway through the first period. The Sharks killed off Labanc’s penalty, but Tuch split the shorthanded San Jose defense and gave Vegas a 4-0 lead just 11:43 in to the first period.

Jones’ night ended just under three-and-a-half minutes into the second period. Shea Theodore scored the fifth Golden Knights goal, the team’s fourth off of a zone entry. Theodore drove the net on a two-on-one, and a desperate Jones sprawled to stop his tip-in to no avail.

Vegas scored twice in the third period, capitalizing on two penalties from San Jose’s first line. Joe Pavelski took a slashing penalty moments after the Sharks killed an interference penalty, while Evander Kane cross-checked Pierre-Edouard Bellemare’s face and received a major penalty plus a ten-minute misconduct.

With both players in the box, Colin Miller’s slapped a shot past Sharks backup Aaron Dell to make it 6-0. James Neal converted the extra point on a wraparound as Kane’s major wound down.

Kane is likely to hear from the NHL’s Department of Player Safety, but is not a “repeat offender” according to league policy. Four players have been suspended this postseason, double the total from last year. If the NHL opts for a phone hearing, Kane will be suspended for five games or less or fined more than $5,000, according to league policy. An in-person hearing means he faces a suspension of six-or-more games.

Thursday marked San Jose’s most lopsided loss in the playoffs in six years. The Sharks lost to the Detroit Red Wings 7-1 on May 6, 2010, but beat them the following game to advance to the Western Conference Finals. It was the second seven-goal loss in the team’s playoff history. San Jose lost to the Calgary Flames 9-2, and then the following game, but won the series in seven games.

Reilly Smith led the Golden Knights in scoring with three points in the first round. He matched that total 23-and-a-half minutes into  Game 1.

Smith added three shots on goal, tied for the team lead.

Sharks: 0-for-5 on the power play, 7-for-10 on the penalty kill

San Jose allowed more power-play goals on Thursday (three) than in the entirety of the first round. Vegas scored two more power-play goals in Game 1 than in four first-round games against the Los Angeles Kings.

Golden Knights: 3-for-10 on the power play, 5-for-5 on the penalty kill

Sharks: Martin Jones struggled. He allowed four goals on the first seven shots he faced, including three in a row, and five on 13 in total. Aaron Dell replaced him early in the second period after the fifth goal.

Jones was largely hung out to dry, but two of the five goals Jones gave up came on low-danger shots, according to Corsica Hockey. He allowed no low-danger goals in the first round against Anaheim.

Golden Knights: Marc-Andre Fleury remained spectacular. He stopped every San Jose shot he faced, and picked up his third shutout in five starts this postseason.

Fleury was instrumental in killing off a pair of penalties late in the first period. He stopped all eight Sharks shots during the extended power-play sequence, and effectively shut the door on their comeback.

Sharks: Joe Thornton (right MCL sprain) was ruled out ahead of Game 1, and has now missed 40 straight games. San Jose made no other lineup changes from Game 4 of the first round against Anaheim.

Golden Knights: Vegas head coach Gerard Gallant opted not to make any lineup changes from Game 4 against Los Angeles, despite defenseman Luca Sbisa being ready to rejoin the lineup after not playing since Feb. 27.  

The Sharks will try to salvage a split in Game 2 at T-Mobile Arena on Saturday. Coverage begins with Sharks Playoff Central on NBC Sports California at 4:30 p.m, followed by puck drop on NBCSN at 5 p.m. Tune into NBC Sports California immediately after the final horn for postgame reaction and analysis.

Blood Brothers? Evander Kane adds Sharks to his wolf pack in Vegas

NBC Sports Bay Area

Blood Brothers? Evander Kane adds Sharks to his wolf pack in Vegas

The Sharks are in Vegas Thursday night for Game 1 of their Round 2 matcup with the Golden Knights. And Evander Kane has something to say. Or as Kane is better known by his real friends, Alan Garner.

Kane, no longer a lone wolf, scored three goals and one assists in the Sharks' Round 1 sweep of the Ducks. He agrees where he stands in this wolf pack too. 

Game 1 starts Thursday night with puck drop at 7 p.m. Pregame coverage starts with Sharks Playoffs Central at 6:30 p.m. on NBC Sports California.