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Field Level Media - Professional sports content solutions | FLM

Mar 31, 2024 9:13 pm

With skid now behind them, Sharks take aim at Kraken

san jose sharks

After ending yet another lengthy winless streak, the San Jose Sharks will try to remain in the win column when they host the Seattle Kraken on Monday.

San Jose took a nine-game losing streak (0-8-1) into Saturday’s meeting with the St. Louis Blues, marking the fourth time this season the Sharks hadn’t tasted victory in at least nine consecutive games. The most recent skid finally ended, however, thanks to Mackenzie Blackwood’s 35 saves in a 4-0 shutout of the Blues.

St. Louis outshot the Sharks 35-20, including lopsided totals in the first (11-3) and third (21-5) periods. In between, San Jose held a 12-3 edge in shots in a second period that saw the Sharks score three goals.

Blackwood was the constant in the back-and-forth game, helping the Sharks (17-48-8, 42 points) stay afloat. San Jose coach David Quinn said the team was “on our heels in the first period.”

“(Blackwood) stood tall, gave us a chance and I really thought we got our wits about us and a much better second period, and then obviously we’re opportunistic as well with our chances,” Quinn said.

Coming off the shutout, Blackwood might be the logical candidate for another start on Monday, though the Sharks’ focus on the future might lead rookie Devin Cooley to his third career start.

The Sharks are 2-15-3 in their past 20 games and have only four winning streaks this season.

Seattle (30-30-13, 73 points) is still mathematically alive in the playoff race, but its postseason hopes were essentially dashed by an eight-game winless streak (0-6-2) from March 8-24.

The Kraken had seemingly gotten back on track with consecutive wins over the Anaheim Ducks before absorbing Saturday’s 3-0 loss to the Dallas Stars. With only 17 shots on goal, the Kraken matched the lowest shot total of their three-season franchise history.

“They’re a hard team to get into a rhythm (against) offensively,” Seattle coach Dave Hakstol said of the Stars. “The first period, our bigger issue was coming out of the zone and getting through the neutral zone. The second period, we generated a little bit. We left a little bit on the table.”

The game was still scoreless until Wyatt Johnston struck 18:12 into the second period. Adam Larsson was then issued an elbowing penalty and a game-misconduct ejection just 19 seconds into the third period, and Joe Pavelski scored nine seconds into the ensuing Dallas power play.

Joey Daccord played well, stopping 27 of 29 Stars shots, though the Kraken’s goaltender rotation means that Philipp Grubauer will likely play Monday.

Vince Dunn is back at regular practice and could be nearing a return to Seattle’s lineup. The defenseman has missed the Kraken’s past 12 games with an upper-body injury.

Jared McCann leads the Kraken in goals (27) and points (58). Dunn still leads the team in assists (34) despite his extended absence.

Mikael Granlund leads the Sharks with 50 points (12 goals, 38 assists).

Monday’s game is the third of four meetings this season between the Pacific Division rivals. The Kraken routed the Sharks 7-1 in Seattle on Nov. 22, and the Sharks recorded their only other shutout of the season with a 2-0 victory over the Kraken on Jan. 30 in San Jose.

–Field Level Media

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