Sharks

Sharks' Couture back on his feet, 'definitely making progress'

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Sharks' Couture back on his feet, 'definitely making progress'

Programming note: Blue Jackets-Sharks coverage starts tonight at 7pm with Sharks Pregame Live on CSN California.

SAN JOSE – For Logan Couture, the recovery process literally is one step at a time.

The Sharks center, out with a fractured right fibula, got back on his feet over the weekend after surgical staples were removed at his ankle. He is now walking around in a boot after about two weeks on crutches.

“Definitely making progress,” Couture told CSNCalifornia.com on Tuesday.

Couture, named an alternate captain just before the season, had surgery on Oct. 17 after a freak accident in practice at the Prudential Center in Newark two days earlier. The Sharks announced the timeframe for his return would be 4-to-6 weeks.

Although it’s now been two-and-a-half weeks since the operation, Couture still didn’t want to estimate when he’ll be on the ice again.

“I don’t know the time when I’m going to be back playing, skating, or anything like that,” he said. “It’s just kind of one step at a time – getting the staples out, to walking. It just takes time.”

The Sharks are 3-5-0 with Couture out of the lineup. Although Tomas Hertl has filled in admirably while centering leading scorer Joel Ward and Patrick Marleau, the team’s overall depth scoring quickly dried up after a promising start when Couture was healthy. In three games, Couture had one assist, a +1 rating and seven shots on goal.

Couture is set to see a team doctor at SAP Center later on Tuesday for a check-up, and he’ll likely stick around to see the Sharks play in person for the first time since getting hurt.

“Any time you get injured it’s tough, especially when the team is not winning, it’s tough watching,” he said. “[I’m] trying to be positive with the guys. Come around as much as I can and try and help out. It’s difficult when you’re not playing.”

2020 NHL All-Star Game live stream: How to watch tournament online

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NBC Sports

2020 NHL All-Star Game live stream: How to watch tournament online

The players put on a show at the NHL All-Star Skills Competition in St. Louis on Friday night. On Saturday, they'll go head-to-head in the 2020 NHL All-Star Game at Enterprise Center.

Sharks forward Tomas Hertl didn't win any events on Friday, but he'll be one of the talks of the town heading into Saturday's exhibition due to the stunt he pulled against Blues goaltender Jordan Binnington in the Bud Light NHL Save Streak competition. It's unlikely he'll have a Justin Bieber mask stowed away under his jersey during Saturday's All-Star Game, but based on his personality, it wouldn't come as a shock if he had any other surprises in store.

[RELATED: Sharks' Hertl brings fun to NHL skills event with Bieber mask]

As San Jose's lone All-Star representative, Hertl will team up with the other members of the Pacific Division squad in an attempt to claim divisional supremacy over the rest of the league. The 2020 NHL All-Star Game will feature a two-round, three-game tournament in which the league's four divisions will square off. Each 20-minute game will be played 3-on-3, with teams changing sides at the 10-minute mark. Any game tied after 20 minutes of play will be decided by shootout.

In Round One, the two Eastern Conference divisions (Atlantic and Metropolitan) will face off, while the two Western Conference divisions (Central and Pacific) will battle in Round Two. The two winners then advance to Round Three where they'll face each other to determine the overall champion.

Here's how to watch the 2020 NHL All-Star Game online:

When: Saturday, Jan. 25, at 5 p.m. PT
TV: NBC
Live Stream: NBCSports.com

Sharks' Tomas Hertl brings the fun to NHL All-Star Skills Competition

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AP

Sharks' Tomas Hertl brings the fun to NHL All-Star Skills Competition

Leave it to Tomas Hertl to put a smile on everyone's face.

The self-described "smiley guy" is the Sharks' lone representative at NHL All-Star Weekend in St. Louis, and he didn't take long to show the Enterprise Center crowd why he fills that role so well during the All-Star Skills Competition on Friday night.

Hertl participated in two events on the evening, and got the crowd on its feet both times. But it was his first event -- the Bud Light NHL Save Streak -- during which he created one of the highlights of the entire night.

The Save Streak competition pits goalies against one another to see how many consecutive breakaway saves they can make. Tampa Bay's Andrei Vasilevskiy held the lead with nine consecutive stops with only the hometown Jordan Binnington left to go. The Blues goaltender recently challenged musician Justin Bieber to a breakaway competition on Twitter, in which he said he would die his hair platinum blonde if Bieber scored at least once on 10 breakaway attempts.

Clearly, Hertl was paying attention, because he had a surprise for Binnington on his own breakaway attempt.

See for yourself:

Hertl didn't score on his hilarious attempt, but it's tough to blame him for two reasons. For one -- and perhaps most importantly -- he had a gigantic Justin Bieber mask over his entire face. Secondly, Binnington would go on to stop six more shots in a row after Hertl to win the event with a streak of 10.

[RELATED: Sharks' Karlsson named to NHL's All-Decade Second Team]

The 26-year-old forward wasn't done for the night, though. He participated in the next event -- the Honda NHL Accuracy Shooting -- as well.

The Accuracy Shooting competition involves a series of shooters attempting to hit five targets on a digital board. Hertl might have the best mits on the Sharks, and he wasted no time showing them off in St. Louis, knocking down four targets on his first four shot attempts. The crowd got louder and louder as it appeared Hertl might complete a perfect round in very short order, but unfortunately, the crescendo had to wait. Hertl struggled to hit the final target, requiring nine more attempts to close it out. Carolina's Jacob Slavvin ultimately won the event, hitting all five targets in only 9.505 seconds, considerably faster than Hertl's time of 17.161.

So, Hertl wasn't victorious in any one event at the Skills Competition, but he undoubtedly will be remembered as one of the big winners of the night. After all, as he likes to say, "Fun must be always."