SAN JOSE – An early power play goal and another in overtime was the difference as the Sharks beat the Kings in Game 3 of their playoff series on Saturday night at HP Pavilion, 2-1.
Logan Couture, who left the game in the second period after limping off the ice, lifted a shot from the slot over Jonathan Quick at 1:29 of overtime to give the Sharks the victory. San Jose is 3-0 in overtime in the playoffs.
A pair of late third period Kings penalties gave the Sharks a two-man advantage that led to the winning goal. Trevor Lewis ran over Antti Niemi on a shorthanded Kings rush with 4.5 seconds remaining, after Robyn Regehr hooked Tommy Wingels at 19:18. That gave San Jose one minute and 19 seconds on a five-on-three to start overtime.
Couture got free in the slot and deposited his fourth goal of the postseason from Patrick Marleau.
The Sharks trail the best-of-seven Western Conference semifinal series, two games to one. They are 3-8 all-time in that situation in franchise history, although they won the most recent one in the first round in 2010 against Colorado.
Saturday night's win snapps Los Angeles’ six-game playoff winning streak. Game 4 is on Tuesday at HP Pavilion.
After Thursday night’s heartbreaking loss in Game 2, the Sharks’ got just the start they were looking for on a power play goal by Dan Boyle at 1:34 of the first. Jake Muzzin was called for delay of game after being pressured by Tommy Wingels, setting up an offensive zone faceoff. Joe Pavelski won it to Marleau, and Marleau set up Boyle for the one-timer with Joe Thornton in front of the goal crease.
That marker was San Jose’s first goal on the power play this series, as it was a combined 0-for-7 through the first two games.
A bad giveaway by Brad Stuart allowed the Kings to tie it later in the first. Stuart attempted a pass to Scott Hannan from behind the Sharks’ net, but Tyler Toffoli intercepted it and flung a backhand past Antti Niemi from the slot at 10:06 for an unassisted goal.
Later in the first, Stuart threw the hit of the Sharks’ playoff run on Los Angeles’ Justin Williams at the Sharks’ offensive blue line, lining up the winger from the neutral zone and running him over with 3:26 left before intermission.
San Jose had to deal with several injuries throughout the game. Marty Havlat, who returned from a lower body injury and played for the first time since Game 1 against Vancouver, left after the first period and did not return. Hannan went head first into the boards after attempting a blocked shot early in the second, and missed about five minutes.
The biggest scare for San Jose, though, came when Couture received a hit from the Kings’ Jeff Carter, and his left skate went awkwardly into the boards about five minutes into the second period. Couture limped to the bench and immediately went up the tunnel, and didn’t return until late in the period, taking a shift in the final minute.
After scoring three power play goals in Game 2, Los Angeles was 0-for-2 on Saturday. It is 3-for-9 in the series.
The Sharks finished 2-for-5.
Niemi made 26 saves and improved to 11-2 career in the playoffs.
Quick made 38 saves and fell to 6-6 career in the playoffs in overtime. He was tagged with an game misconduct penalty after the game for "abuse of officials," according to reports.
Havlat’s abbreviated return meant Tim Kennedy came out for the Sharks. The fourth line consisted of Andrew Desjardins centering James Sheppard and Bracken Kearns to start the game.
The Kings inserted 2012 first round pick Tanner Pearson into the lineup, and the 20-year-old made his NHL debut. Jordan Nolan sat for Los Angeles.
Adam Burish (broken hand) and Jason Demers (sprained left ankle) remained out for the Sharks. Kyle Clifford (undisclosed) and Jarret Stoll (suspected concussion) were the injured scratches for the Kings.
The Sharks will have their first mid-series two-day break between playoff games. The Kings flew home to Los Angeles Saturday night, and will return on Monday. Game 5 is at Staples Center on Thursday.