San Jose Sharks Beat Up on Anaheim Ducks Thanks to Big Three

Chris BennettContributor IOctober 31, 2010

SAN JOSE, CA - SEPTEMBER 25:  Dan Boyle #22 of the San Jose Sharks waits for a face-off against the Phoenix Coyotes in a preseason split-squad game at HP Pavilion on September 25, 2010 in San Jose, California.  The Sharks won 3-1.  (Photo by Brian Bahr/Getty Images)
Brian Bahr/Getty Images

San Jose, Calif.

San Jose Sharks (5-3-1) Five

Anaheim Ducks (4-7-1) Two

Whenever Northern and Southern California teams play each other, emotions run high. In a tense and physical match, the San Jose Sharks showed off their offensive prowess in a 5-2 win.

After a shaky start, the San Jose Sharks have found their grove. 

San Jose started the 2010 season with two straight losses at home but have come back strong beating New Jersey and Anaheim, both by the score of 5-2.

The big difference has been the great play of Antero Niittymaki. Niemi started the season as the No. 1 net minder but struggled. Niittmaki has come in and made an instant difference. He finished Saturday's game with 22 saves, and a few of those came in a fast paced third period where the Ducks threaten to come back into the game.

Offensively, the Sharks wasted no time. Dany Heatley continued his scoring streak, scoring a goal in the first minute of regulation. He would add a second goal and an assist later in the game.

The other two components of the Sharks' big three also contributed to the scoring. Patrick Marleau showed off his speed and puck handling when he scored in the second period to make it 5-0. Big Joe Thornton had three assists on the night and has contributed on eight consecutive goals for the sharks.

This is a good sign for the Sharks. Having the big three contributing and beating up on opposing defenses means the Sharks will be able to score often and win.

The power play has also been unstoppable for the Sharks. Coming into the night, the Sharks were second in the league on the power play (31.6 percent) and they added two more on Saturday. They moved the puck very well, as nine different Sharks had a point in the game.

Defense has looked better since its sloppy start. They played well but allowed two power play goals which gave the Ducks life, but Niittymaki shut the door on any rally.

The Sharks are off for a few days until they travel north to face the Minnesota Wild.