SAN JOSE – Vincent Lecavalier tied the game late in regulation and Marian Gaborik won it in overtime for the Kings, who beat the Sharks at SAP Center on Sunday night, 3-2.
On the tying goal, Lecavalier parked in front of the San Jose net and managed to get his stick on a Tanner Pearson pass with 12.2 seconds to go in regulation.
Gaborik’s wrist shot from the circle beat Martin Jones with 53.8 seconds to go in overtime.
The Kings (30-15-3, 63 points) increased their lead over the Sharks (25-18-4, 54 points) to nine points in the Pacific Division. Despite the loss, the Sharks have at least one point in nine straight games (7-0-2).
The Sharks and Kings meet once more on March 28, in San Jose.
Joe Pavelski’s goal at 3:39 of the second period was the only marker through two periods. The scoring play started with Joe Thornton stepping out of the penalty box and hustling into the offensive zone. He out-battled Christian Ehrhoff behind the Kings net, slid the puck to Tomas Hertl from his knees, and Hertl quickly pushed it to Pavelski who whipped it home.
Pavelski has eight points (4g, 4a) against the Kings through the first four games of the season series, leading all scorers on both sides.
Los Angeles tied it at 1-1 with a third period power play goal, courtesy of Drew Doughty. The perennial Norris Trophy candidate was on the business end of a check from Mike Brown that was deemed to be a roughing penalty, and on the ensuing advantage Doughty blasted home a slap shot from the top of the circle through a Tyler Toffoli screen at 6:30.
The Sharks took the lead back, 2-1, at 11:42 of the third period courtesy of Logan Couture. Joonas Donskoi fought off the Kings’ Jake Muzzin behind the net before spotting Couture in the circle. In one motion, Couture gathered in the pass and whined it through Jhonas Enroth at 11:42 for his third of the year.
The game took a nasty turn late in the second period. Dustin Brown ran Hertl into the bench, drawing a crowd of Sharks including Hertl, Pavelski and Thornton who shoved the Kings captain. Shortly after that, Brayden McNabb tripped up Chris Tierney at the blue line and rode Tierney hard into the boards, earning a minor penalty at 16:47.
Tierney went to the dressing room for the final three minutes, but returned to start the third.
Jones, who has started all four games against his former club, made his best stops late in the second. He got in front of a Jeff Carter shot alone in the slot, and slid to stop Carter’s rebound try as time expired in the middle frame.
The Kings had the early advantage, recording seven of the first eight shots on goal. They nearly went ahead on a Muzzin blast less than three minutes into the game, but it clanged off the post.
The Kings were without key forward Milan Lucic, who was suspended one game by the league for a sucker punch of the Coyotes’ Kevin Connauton on Saturday night.
The Sharks finished 0-for-4 on the power play, while allowing one goal against in four Kings advantages.
The penalty kill remains the one area of the Sharks’ game that hasn’t been stellar during their nine-game run, going 15-for-22 (68.2 percent). Still, it didn’t allow the Kings to get the tying goal on more than a minute of power play time with less than four minutes to go in regulation.
Jones finished with 29 saves and is 6-0-1 in his last seven starts.
Kings number one Jonathan Quick had started the previous eight games, but it was Enroth who made his second straight start at SAP Center. The backup allowed two goals on 32 shots in his first game since Jan. 4, and has beaten the Sharks twice this season.
Thornton played his 800th game as a Shark. He extended his point streak to nine games, his longest since a 10-gamer from Nov. 14 – Dec. 3, 2009, and has at least one point in 17 of his last 18.
Donskoi increased his point-streak to five games (1g, 5a).
The Sharks play their final game before the All-Star break at home on Tuesday when they host the Avalanche. They open a four-game road trip on Feb. 2 in Anaheim, and don’t play at home again until Feb. 11.