Sharks

Sharks spotlight: TJ Galiardi

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Sharks spotlight: TJ Galiardi

Editor's note: Over the next month, CSNCalifornia.com Sharks Insider Kevin Kurz and Postgame Live reporter Brodie Brazil will evaluate the 2011-12 performance of each player on the roster. One breakdown will occur every weekday in numerical order.

Shark spotlight -- the series
Sharks spotlight: TJ GaliardiAge: 24 LWTJ Galiardi was acquired by the Sharks at the trade deadlinefrom the Colorado Avalanche, and had one goal in 14 games with six penaltyminutes. In 55 games with the Avalanche before the trade, he had eight goalsand six assists for 14 points and 47 penalty minutes. He was scoreless with sixpenalty minutes in three playoff games for the Sharks. He is a restricted freeagent.Kurz says: When the Sharks acquired Galiardi (along withDaniel Winnik in exchange for Jamie McGinn and a prospect), nearly everyone whowas on the Sharks roster in 2010 commented on how much of a rat Galiardicould be on the ice and they meant it as a compliment. Galiardi displayed hisup-tempo, pest-like game in flashes with the Sharks, but never locked down aregular spot in the lineup, as evidenced by his being a healthy scratch in twoof five playoff games. A six-game absence due to a back injury didnt helpGaliardis adjustment, either, as he was forced to sit from March 17-26 whilerecovering.Brodie says: It was pretty amazing that as Dan Winnik and TJ Galiardi were having lunch together, they found out, within minutes apart, that each was involved in a trade to San Jose. But in a sense, it was also symbolic of the friendship between the two... one which made joining a pressing Sharks team at the deadline a lot easier as a pair. With their outgoing and fun-loving personalities both were quickly accepted into the dressing room, in a time where the temperature was raising over playoff uncertainty. Tenured Shark players recalled Galiardi being a frustrating matchup back in the 2010 playoffs, when he helped the Avalanche take their first round effort to 6 games against San Jose. He was pesky in that series and made life difficult on all of the top players of his future team. Galiardi suffered from what could have been a pre-existing back injury as he came to the Sharks, which did not help him in the quest to make immediate contributions or find a rhythm with minimal time to spare. 2012-13 expectationsKurz says: Galiardi is still just 24 years old, and theSharks will almost certainly bring him back into the fold next season. Hellhave the benefit of a full training camp, and should be able to lock down aregular spot among the top 12 forwards. Galiardi has the potential to developinto a strong penalty killer, too, and if the Sharks play a more aggressivestyle on the PK next year as is expected Galiardi could be an effectivepart of that unit.Although things didnt work out for him in Colorado, thereis still plenty of time for Galiardi to continue to improve his game and, atthe very least, be an effective role player with the Sharks.Brodie says: As one of five restricted free agents this summer, the ball is really in the Sharks' court with Galiardi. One thing to note: he is an extremely motivated player, still with a chip on his shoulder about the way things ended in Colorado. He has a strong desire to make San Jose his proving ground, which in itself should be a good reason for the team to exercise its essential option. His age, his energy and his potential all fit. Galiardi can be the type of player you hate to go up against; so why not put him in teal for a full next season?
Up next: Logan Couture

Labanc, Sharks overcoming even strength scoring woes

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USATSI

Labanc, Sharks overcoming even strength scoring woes

Kevin Labanc’s first period goal in the Sharks’ Sunday win over the Ducks certainly didn’t look like it was just his fifth of the season, or only his third since opening night.

The 22-year-old, sprung in alone on a breakaway, sold Anaheim goaltender John Gibson on a fake shot with a leg kick, and snapped the puck past him into the top corner. You know a ‘goal-scorers goal’ when you see it, and you saw it 3:38 into the second period.

Labanc not only broke a 12-game, month-long goalless drought, but picked up his third point in as many games after scoring zero in his previous six. Despite his emergence as a force on the power play, all three points came during five-on-five play.

He’s generated six scoring chances in five-on-five situations in his last three games, according to Natural Stat Trick. That’s as many as Labanc accounted for in the six games preceding this run.

The same can be said about his five-on-five shot attempts (seven) and high-danger chances (two). His six shots on goal in his last three games are just one shy of also matching his five-on-five output over his six games prior.

In those categories, Labanc ranks third, third, and tied for second among Sharks forwards, as well as third in five-on-five scoring chances. He’s also tied with Mikkel Boedker for the forward-lead in five-on-five points over the last three games, despite playing only the eighth-most five-on-five minutes.

As Labanc’s broken out of an extended slump, so have the Sharks. Since returning from the bye week on Jan. 13, San Jose is fifth in five-on-five scoring rate (3.1 goals for/60 minutes), compared to 28th before their bye (1.91).

They’re also 5-1-0 during that time.

The Sharks, much like Labanc, were too reliant upon power play production prior to the NHL-mandated week off. Over half of Labanc’s points came with (at least) a man advantage, and 32 of San Jose’s 108 were scored on the power play.

Since, the second-year forward has only scored five-on-five points, while only five of the Sharks’ 23 goals were power play tallies. The power play’s still converting, but it’s not been the sole driver of San Jose’s offense.

It’s only a six-game sample, but the early five-on-five, post-bye week returns are promising for Labanc and the Sharks. The next step for both is to maintain that pace.

If Labanc and San Jose can, the Sharks may not need to shop for a top-six winger at the trade deadline after all.

Sharks dominate Ducks for two wins in two nights

Sharks dominate Ducks for two wins in two nights

BOX SCORE

ANAHEIM -- Mikkel Boedker had two goals and an assist, Joe Thornton had a goal and an assist, and the San Jose Sharks beat the Anaheim Ducks 6-2 on Sunday night.

Marc-Edouard Vlasic, Kevin Labanc and Melker Karlsson also scored for the Sharks, who have won five of six. Aaron Dell stopped 33 shots.

Rickard Rakell and Ryan Getzlaf scored for Anaheim. John Gibson stopped only 17 of 22 shots and was replaced after giving up his fifth goal. Anaheim had a four-game home winning streak snapped.

Four goals came in the third period. First, Anaheim pulled within one when Ondrej Kase stole the puck from behind the net and quickly fed Getzlaf, who fired it past Dell.

One minute later, the Sharks answered when Thornton's slap shot went in.

Boedker's second goal gave San Joe a 5-2 lead, and Karlsson's goal on goalie Ryan Miller made it a runaway.

The Ducks first found the net in the final minute of the second period, but that took a two-man advantage and a bit of luck.

Rakell was camped a few feet below the crease when he snapped a shot. San Jose's Justin Braun stuck out a stick, but it deflected the puck off the back of Dell's arm and into the net.

It was Rakell's team-high 17th goal this season.

San Jose appeared to take a commanding 3-0 lead on a power play in the second period. Boedker fired a shot from the top of the right circle that whistled past Gibson.

The Sharks took a 2-0 lead early in the second period when Anaheim's No.1 line turned the puck over. Thornton snapped it out to Labanc, who popped free for a breakaway. He beat Gibson on his short side for his fifth goal.

The Sharks took a 1-0 lead late in the first period on a nifty give-and-go when Tomas Hertl skated down the far side and sent a pass through the legs of Anaheim's Brandon Montour and right to Vlasic in front of the net.

Vlasic snapped it past Gibson for his seventh goal of the season.

UP NEXT

Sharks: Return to San Jose on Tuesday night to play the Jets.

Ducks: Remain at home to play the Rangers on Tuesday night.