04/23 01:17 CDT Sharks beat Kings 4-3 in OT, take 3-0 series lead
Sharks beat Kings 4-3 in OT, take 3-0 series lead
AP Sports Writer
LOS ANGELES (AP) --- After Patrick Marleau's fourth career playoff overtime
goal silenced Staples Center for maybe the next-to-last time this season, the
veteran San Jose Sharks forward attributed his knack for postseason heroics to
one simple trait.
"Well, you just try to shoot it on net," Marleau said. "This one was not a hard
shot by any means, but you just get it to the net."
That's how good things happen for Marleau and the Sharks, who weathered the Los
Angeles Kings' best game of the series and emerged on the brink of advancement.
Marleau scored 6:20 into overtime, and the Sharks beat the Kings 4-3 on Tuesday
night to take a 3-0 first-round series lead.
Rookie Tomas Hertl tied it with 10:43 left in regulation for the Sharks, who
had to grind out a nail-biting victory after two blowout wins in San Jose. But
the Sharks have won five straight overtime playoff games and 10 of their past
11, with Marleau repeatedly delivering the decisive blow.
"For Patty Marleau to come up with that goal, it's just huge for us," captain
Joe Thornton said. "It was just going back and forth."
The Kings largely controlled overtime until Marleau's shot banked off Kings
defenseman Slava Voynov's stick on its way past Jonathan Quick, who made 36
saves in his third straight loss. Marleau's goal was his third of the series.
"They had the bat in their hands, and they were going to swing it," San Jose
coach Todd McLellan said. "They had us on our heels, but sometimes it goes that
way. We will take that break."
Matt Nieto got his first career playoff goal for the Sharks, and Brent Burns
also scored. Antti Niemi stopped 28 shots for San Jose, winning three straight
in the matchup of Stanley Cup-winning goalies.
Game 4 is Thursday in Los Angeles.
Los Angeles has slipped to the brink of first-round elimination just two years
after its Stanley Cup title run. The Kings were the NHL's best defensive team
during the regular season, but they've allowed 17 goals in the first three
games of this series.
Only three teams have ever rallied to win a best-of-seven NHL playoff series
after trailing 0-3.
"It was a better effort," said leading scorer Anze Kopitar, who doesn't have a
goal in the series. "We had some chances, but it wasn't enough. We're going to
have to come back in a couple of days and throw everything at them."
Jeff Carter tipped in a tiebreaking goal for Los Angeles on a power play early
in the third period, but Hertl evened it right after a power play expired. San
Jose dominated the third, but Quick made 23 saves to send the Kings into their
first overtime playoff game at home in three years.
Marian Gaborik scored and Jarret Stoll ended his 29-game playoff goal drought
for the Kings, who stumbled back home after opening the series with two
disastrous games at the Shark Tank.
The Kings' nervous fans got quiet early on when Burns partly whiffed on a wrist
shot and produced a knuckling puck that sailed past Quick just 10 seconds into
a Sharks power play.
Stoll evened it with his first playoff goal in two years early in the second
period. Stoll hadn't found the net in the postseason since his series-clinching
overtime goal against Vancouver in 2012.
Gaborik then put the Kings ahead all by himself, lugging the puck from the
opposite blue line and beating Niemi with a vicious backhand.
"I think our better players were better," Kings coach Darryl Sutter said. "That
was noticeable. That will give us a chance next game."
San Jose evened it 1:18 later when Nieto, from nearby Long Beach, scored into
an open net. Quick had been knocked to the ice by Kings defenseman Robyn Regehr
Carter capitalized in the waning seconds of a power play by tipping Anze
Kopitar's shot in front for his first playoff score since Game 2 of last
season's Western Conference finals, ending a personal 393:34 drought.
Hertl converted his own rebound midway through the period to even it again,
scoring on the rink where a knee-on-knee hit from Dustin Brown sidelined the
Czech rookie for 45 games earlier this season.
NOTES: The Kings scratched F Colin Fraser after recalling the two-time Stanley
Cup champion from the AHL earlier in the day. Los Angeles also scratched F Kyle
Clifford, who went scoreless with a minus-3 and 16 penalty minutes in the first
two games, and D Matt Greene, a minus-4 in the series. ... The Kings dressed F
Tanner Pearson, who made his NHL playoff debut last season before he had ever
played in a regular-season NHL game. ... Los Angeles played its 41st playoff
game in the past three seasons, the most by any NHL team in that span.