It was a nail-biter down in the Lone Star State as the Sharks visited the Dallas Stars on Friday.
Both teams tried to extend winning streaks, and the Sharks came out swinging to start the night. Things got interesting as both teams lit the lamp in the third period, but the Stars defeated the Sharks in Dallas for the second time this season, picking up a 3-2 win.
Here are three takeaways from Friday night’s game:
Sharks need to capitalize on more of their grade-A’s
They’re certainly creating them, that’s for sure. In the first frame, San Jose was able to roll all four lines and created some really nice-looking chances, but Evander Kane and Logan Couture provided the Sharks' only goals.
Coach Peter DeBoer said after the Sharks’ win over the Montreal Canadiens on Sunday that he would’ve liked the team to bury more chances, and make the game easier on themselves. This issue came back to bite the Sharks on Friday, as they carried just a 1-0 lead into the second period and Dallas scored to tie everything up before the second intermission.
The second-period skid crept back in
The Sharks won their last two games in part because they didn’t take their feet – or skates, if you prefer – off the gas and let the opposition creep back in during the second stanza. On Friday night in Dallas, however, they lost some steam and allowed the Stars to get back into the game.
Which, of course, gave way to a bad changed that allowed Mattias Janmark to grab the puck on a breakaway and beat goaltender Martin Jones.
Even though the Sharks ramped up the energy again in the third period to try and regain the lead, it was after the Stars notched two quick goals to take a 3-1 lead. Had Jones not had another strong game, Dallas might’ve jumped out to an even bigger lead.
On a more positive note …
Radim Simek has already made an impact on the blueline
The 26-year-old defenseman has only played three games. But the elements he brings to the Sharks blueline already make them a much more dangerous product. His mix of physicality and speed is a welcome addition to San Jose’s blue line.
Friday’s game was already quite physical with both teams trying to extend their winning streaks. But, Simek added an extra punch to San Jose’s physical presence, finishing his checks and deftly knocking Dallas’ skaters off the puck.