The Sharks blew a third-period lead, but salvaged a 4-3 double overtime win in Game 2 of their second-round series against the Vegas Golden Knights on Saturday. Logan Couture scored the game-winner on the power play with 14:47 remaining in the second overtime, tying the series 1-1.
Timo Meier drew a hooking penalty on Jon Merrill with 14:55 remaining in the second extra frame, and Couture capitalized.
San Jose rallied from a two-goal deficit with three, second-period goals, but Vegas defenseman Nate Schmidt tied the game with 6:32 remaining in regulation. Jonathan Marchessault appeared to win the game with about three minutes remaining in the first overtime, but the goal was overturned when a review in the Situation Room in Toronto determined he interfered with Sharks goaltender Martin Jones.
Evander Kane missed the game due to a suspension stemming from a major cross-checking penalty in Game 1, but San Jose's offense did not miss a beat without him. Brent Burns and Couture each scored twice, and Couture's winner was his team-leading fourth of the postseason.
San Jose trailed 2-0 just 20:26 into regulation, despite largely outplaying Vegas. The Sharks had 16 five-on-five shot attempts to the Golden Knights' 10 during that stretch, but trailed by two thanks to a pair of defensive zone turnovers leading to William Karlsson's second and third goals of the playoffs.
Tensions boiled over, and the rivalry between the NHL's 22nd and 31st teams shfted from 'hypothetical' to 'very real.' San Jose and Vegas combined for 15 penalties and 30 penalty minutes. That included four sets of matching minors.
The win was San Jose's first in four tries at T-Mobile Arena dating back to the regular season.
Logan Couture's fifth career multi-goal playoff game could not have come at a better time for the Sharks. He tied the game in the second period, and sealed the split in the second overtime.
He also led the team with seven shots on goal, and only Brent Burns had more shot attempts (17) than Couture (13).
Sharks: 2-for-7 on the power play, 2-for-2 on the penalty kill
Golden Knights: 0-for-2 on the power play; 5-for-7 on the penalty kill
San Jose scored more power play goals against Vegas in Game 2 than the Los Angeles Kings did in four first-round games.
Sharks: Martin Jones only stopped 26 of 29 shots, but stopped all nine he faced in both overtimes. His kick save on Jonathan Marchessault, plus his denial of a wide-open James Neal with the knob of his stick, stood out as key saves during the first overtime to preserve the tie.
Golden Knights: Marc-Andre Fleury allowed four goals, and opted not to freeze the puck before the turnover leading to Couture's game-tying goal. But, he stopped 22 of the 23 shots he faced from the third period onward, and ensured the Golden Knights had an opportunity to tie the game.
Mikkel Boedker drew a high-sticking penalty 1:35 into the second overtime. The Sharks did not score on the power play, but they held on to the puck for most of the fifth frame, and were able to manage enough zone time to draw their second penalty of the second overtime.
Sharks: Barclay Goodrow (finger) played his first game since March 27 with Kane suspended. San Jose made no other lineup changes, meaning Joe Thornton missed his 41st consecutive game.
Golden Knights: Vegas made no lineup changes from Game 1.
The series now heads to SAP Center for Games 3 and 4. Coverage of Monday night's Game 3 begins on NBC Sports California at 6:30 p.m. with 'Sharks Playoff Central.' Game 3 can be seen on NBCSN at 7, followed by a postgame edition of 'Sharks Playoff Central' on NBC Sports California immediately following.