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Dany Heatley wasted no time putting the Sharks ahead just 30 seconds into the game, setting a franchise record for quickest goal in a playoff game. Driving the net with authority, Heatley put home the Ryane Clowe rebound, following a nifty feed from Ian White.
Ian White left the game following a clear boarding penalty after having his head targeted by Jarrett Stoll, with 30 seconds left in the first period. How this is not a penalty I still do not know, and the league has to take immediate action because it’s clearly an intent to injure.
Leaving the Sharks with just five defensemen, it exposed San Jose’s Achilles' heel as we’ve seen earlier in the year. Jason Demers answered the call, taking on the additional minutes with Niclas Wallin and finishing with 27:31 of ice time.
Ben Eager wasted no time answering for San Jose, pummeling Kyle Clifford with several right hands and a nasty elbow.
Dustin Brown tied the score on the power play in the second period, one-timing the Justin Williams pass home on odd man rush down the ice. Couture’s shot went wide on a shorthanded chance down the ice and the subsequent rebound off the Zamboni-side end boards led to the 2-1 rush.
Logan Couture took back the lead just three minutes later for the San Jose Sharks, on two great plays by Ryane Clowe. After deftly evading a Drew Doughty hip check, Couture went five hole on Quick for the 2-1 San Jose lead.
A blown communication with about three minutes left allowed Justin Williams to sneak the puck home against an unsuspecting Antti Niemi. Douglas Murray left his man to deliver the big hit and it cost the Sharks late with about two minutes left in the period.
The Kings returned the favor, outshooting the Sharks 16-9 in the second period but neither team could score in the third.
With the game knotted up, the Sharks and Kings headed to overtime where Niemi came up with some huge saves to save the Sharks. None bigger than the open net chance on Richardson just three minutes into the opening frame—Niemi was simply magical late.
Joe Pavelski ended the game as a third trailer at 14:44, going high glove side against Jonathan Quick and giving the Sharks the 1-0 series lead.
Antti Niemi recorded 33 saves for the 3-2 win, posting a sparkling .943 save percentage and coming up with some key saves late in the third as well as overtime.