With the spotlight so firmly centered on Erik Karlsson’s return to Ottawa, everyone might have briefly forgotten the San Jose Sharks still had a game to play on Saturday.
[RELATED: Karlsson's return to Ottawa]
The Karlsson Reunion Game became the Mikkel Boedker Revenge Game as Team Teal’s road woes continued in Canada’s capitol. San Jose’s former teammate had a three-point night as the Senators beat the Sharks 4-1.
Here are three takeaways from the matinee match at Canadian Tire Centre:
What’s going on with the second period?
After Thursday’s loss to the Maple Leafs, Logan Couture told the media the team was only playing well in spurts. For whatever reason, those spurts are fewer and far between in the second stanza of Sharks’ games.
The wheels came off in second period of Saturday’s game as well, as San Jose surrendered three goals to Ottawa. As @SharksStats pointed out during the second intermission, the Sharks have now surrendered a league-worst 12 goals in the second frame alone. If the Sharks are going to stop this losing skid, they can’t keep getting on their heels halfway through a game.
The response from Marcus Sorensen was perfection
If it seems like we’ve been talking about Marcus Sorensen a lot lately, it’s because he’s been one of the bright spots through San Jose’s tough road trip. He added another angle to his dominant play in the second period when he went after Justin Faulk for his hit on Joe Thornton.
It’s the kind of reaction you want to see – a young skater standing up for his veteran teammate. It’s also the kind of response you want to see from a frustrated team in need of a boost.
More speed through 60 could help this team turn things around
Okay, this is a loaded question. There are plenty of things the Sharks could do to turn things around. But something was brought up on the Sharks’ broadcast that can definitely be doubled-down on – San Jose’s overall game could use more speed.
When the Sharks have won games this season, they’ve been the faster product on the ice. On Saturday, however, there were streaks during the game against Ottawa where the Sharks looked to be moving slower – and the Senators looked as though they were able to predict what the Sharks were going to do. San Jose is a team that can no doubt play a fast game.
Putting that speed into play right from the drop of the puck – and keeping it through that second period, no less – can help San Jose get back into the win column.