Programming note: Sharks-Avalanche coverage starts tonight at 7:00 p.m. on NBCSN
Where they stand
Sharks: 25-18-4, 54 points, 2nd Pacific Division
Avalanche: 26-21-3, 55 points, 5th Central Division
Sharks: The Sharks increased their point-streak to nine games (7-0-2), but missed an opportunity to draw closer to the first place Kings on Sunday night in a 3-2 overtime loss in which they gave up the game-tying goal with 12.2 seconds to go. This is their final action before the All-Star break, with a four-game, nine-day road trip beginning in Anaheim in one week.
Avalanche: Semyon Varlamov made 42 saves and the Avalanche scored a pair of shorthanded goals by Carl Soderberg and Gabriel Landeskog in a 3-1 win in Dallas on Saturday. Colorado, which visits the Kings tomorrow, has won four straight and is 5-1-0 in its last six. The Avs have surrendered just six goals in their last six games.
Keep an eye on…
Sharks: Joe Thornton. The former captain is on a nine-game point streak (2g, 10a), his longest since a 10-game streak from Nov. 14 – Dec. 3, 2009, according to Elias. Thornton has at least one point in 17 of his last 18 games (5g, 18a), and is just two points shy of becoming the 33rd player in NHL history to reach 1,300 for his career.
Avalanche: Carl Soderberg. The former Bruin impressed in the last meeting, scoring one goal and two assists, all on the power play. The 30-year-old has 34 points on the season, third on the team in scoring, and leads the Avalanche with 24 assists. He’s found the scoresheet in four of the last six games (3g, 2a).
Tomas Hertl – Joe Thornton – Joe Pavelski
Joonas Donskoi – Logan Couture – Tommy Wingels
Matt Nieto – Patrick Marleau – Joel Ward
Melker Karlsson – Chris Tierney – Dainius Zubrus
Marc-Edouard Vlasic – Justin Braun
Paul Martin – Brent Burns
Brenden Dillon – Dylan DeMelo
Martin Jones (confirmed starter)
Alex Tanguay – Nathan Mackinnon – Matt Duchene
Gabriel Landeskog – Carl Soderberg – Blake Comeau
Andreas Martinsen – Mikhail Grigorenko – Jarome Iginla
Cody McLeod – John Mitchell – Jack Skille
Francois Beauchemin – Erik Johnson
Nick Holden – Tyson Barrie
Zach Redmond – Chris Bigras
Calvin Pickard (confirmed starter)
Goals per game: 2.85 (5th)
Goals-against per game: 2.70 (23rd)
Power play: 21.3 percent (5th)
Penalty kill: 79.3 percent (24th)
Goals per game: 2.74 (7th)
Goals-against per game: 2.66 (18th)
Power play: 20.0 percent (9th)
Penalty kill: 80.4 percent (18th)
Sharks: Raffi Torres (right knee) is on a conditioning assignment with the AHL Barracuda.
Avalanche: Jesse Winchester (concussion), Brad Stuart (undisclosed), Ben Street (chest) and Reto Berra (ankle) are out.
The teams have split their first two meetings, with the Sharks claiming a 4-3 win in Denver on Nov. 1 and the Avalanche winning in San Jose on Dec. 28, 6-3, behind four power play goals.
The fourth and final game of the season series is Feb. 24 at Pepsi Center.
Odds and ends
*The Sharks are on their first nine-game point streak since Oct. 3-21, 2013, when they started the season 8-0-1.
*When Logan Couture is in the lineup, the Sharks are 11-3-3. They are 14-15-1 without him.
*Joe Pavelski is sixth in the NHL with 24 goals, and leads the league with eight game-winners.
*Tomas Hertl has nine points (5g, 4a) in his last nine games.
*Joonas Donskoi is on a five-game scoring streak (1g, 5a).