Playoff experience gives Sharks an edge in Game 1 win over Oilers

Experience gives Sharks an edge in Game 1

EDMONTON — Experience definitely appeared to be a factor in the San Jose Sharks taking a 1-0 series lead in their first round playoff series with the Edmonton Oilers.

After trailing 2-0 after the first period, the Sharks outshot the Oilers 34-9 from there, going on to win 3-2 in overtime on a goal by Melker Karlsson, 3:22 into extra time.

Joel Ward and Paul Martin scored the other goals for the Sharks, who went to the Stanley Cup final last season, losing to the Pittsburgh Penguins in six games.

“It was a big win,” said San Jose forward Tomas Hertl, who assisted on the tying goal early in the third. “We came back so strong. The reason we went so far last year is because we kept coming back in the second and third periods. We just keep going. We have a deep team. If we keep playing this same way, we will win the next game here, too.”

Sharks captain Joe Pavelski said he is not sure if it was his team’s experience or just an overall sense of composure that turned the tide.

“Tonight we were just committed to doing it a certain way and we didn’t really get away from it,” he said. “I don’t know if that’s experience or not, or commitment, or whatever it was, but maybe it played a little role in there and it’ll need to going forward.”

The Oilers, meanwhile, were playing their first playoff game since 2006.

Sharks centre Logan Couture, last year’s leading scorer in the NHL playoffs with 30 points, was back wearing a full protective shield as he made his return to the lineup in time for Game 1 after missing the final seven games of the regular season following taking a puck in the face.

He said he still has some work to do to get back to the top of his game.

“I don’t think I was very good or effective,” he said. “I am happy to get a game under my belt. I can play a lot better than I did tonight. The team won and this time of year, that is all that matters.”

San Jose remained without veteran forward Joe Thornton, who missed the final three games of the regular season with a knee injury and is still day-to-day.

Sharks head coach Peter DeBoer said that his team’s performance to start the playoffs is far more indicative of his squad than the one that stumbled down the stretch, losing nine of their final 13 games in the regular season.

“It doesn’t matter where we were in March,” he said. “We’re here now and we’re playing and that’s all that matters.”

The second game of the series takes place on Friday in Edmonton, before shifting to San Jose on Sunday.

Shane Jones, The Canadian Press

Just Posted

Dumping at Shaw Road “disgusting”

CSRD praises volunteers, wants illegal dumpers prosecuted

Sicamous pulls out of CSRD economic committee

District launches its own economic development corporation on Jan. 1, 2018

Controlled burns taking place across Okanagan

That smoke you see on Okanagan hillsides is supposed to be there

Slideshow: Shuswap Stars sparkle on the dance floor

Stunning choreography raises funds for new chalet at Larch Hills

Big White to send off Olympians in style

Okanagan ski resort picked as location for official send-off of Canada’s 2018 Winter Olympic team

Video: Shuswap stars shine for Larch Hills

Competitors dance to the tune of $30,000 for the chalet expansion

Cash donations create purchase power

Salvation Army and food banks stretch a donated dollar a long way

B.C. reporter reflects on covering Charles Manson

Charles Manson, leader of a murderous cult, died on Sunday at 83

ICBC overbilling for crash repairs not the problem, dealers say

Collision repair shops reject union claim of inflated costs

B.C. groups to address child sex abuse in sports

viaSport is organizing a full day of education in association with Canadian Centre for Child Protection and the Coaching Association of Canada.

Silver Star opens Thursday

Vernon’s ski hill has plenty of snow and plenty of fun packed for opening weekend

Report sets exercise guidelines for young kids, including ‘tummy time’ for babies

Kids aged one to four should get at least three hours of physical activity throughout the day

Stampeders return to Grey Cup with 32-28 win over Edmonton Eskimos

The Stampeders will face the Toronto Argonauts next Sunday in Ottawa for the title

Traxxas Monster Truck Tour to roll into Kelowna

Monster Trucks at Prospera Place on Jan. 13-14, 2018.

Most Read