When the Sharks scored early in the first period and the Rangers tied it up one minute later, you knew this game was going to be a doozy.
In a rematch of San Jose's overtime loss on October 11 at Madison Square Garden, the tie wouldn’t be broken until Chris Kreider put New York on top 2-1 in the third period. Timo Meier extended his hot streak with a spectacular tying goal to match it, but Kreider scored again two minutes later to give the Rangers a 3-2 lead.
Then, with 1.8 seconds left in regulation, Tomas Hertl snapped a shot past Hernik Lundqvist to knot things back up 3-3 and send everything into overtime.
Free hockey went all the way to a shootout round, which ended with Kevin Shattenkirk giving the Rangers the 4-3 victory.
Here are three takeaways from Tuesday’s craziness.
You can’t always go off the shot clock
In the Sharks' last battle with the Rangers, they heavily outshot the Rangers despite not being able to build a lead. On Tuesday evening the tables were turned – New York had the advantage on the clock, although the score didn’t show it for much of the game.
In what has become a rare feat, the Sharks were outshot for the better part of a game. The Rangers immediately started putting Martin Jones to work and kept the ice tilted through the first frame, entering the first intermission up 17-6 in shots on goal.
Nevertheless, the Sharks were able to keep the Rangers from breaking the tie until Kreider’s one-timer zipped past Jones in the opening minutes of the third period.
That Hertl-Couture-Meier line should probably stay together for a while
I know it’s early in the season and there are going to be plenty of line changes as the season goes on. But right now, that line combination has to be giving opponents nightmares.
They created that same type of force on the Sharks' third goal of the evening, as all three forwards circled around the Rangers' net before Hertl lined the puck past Lundqvist stick-side.
Did the crazy road trip finally catch up the team?
Not that any player would have used changing so many time zones over the last week as a crutch. The Sharks have started off plenty of seasons with long road trips in the month of October. That being said, it could be argued the Nashville-to-Raleigh-to-Anaheim excursion started to wear on the team.
Although the Sharks played a good enough defensive game to keep the Rangers from capitalizing for the better part of the game, they weren’t able to pressure the Blueshirts in their own zone the same way they have with past opponents.
Well, at least not until they tied the game up and sent it into overtime.
At the very least the Sharks have the benefit of playing a few more games on home ice and can build up momentum with games coming up on Thursday and Saturday.