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 » All things PLAYOFFS! » Game of the Night: San Jose Sharks at Anaheim Ducks, Thursday, April 23, 2009, 10:30 pm ET/7:30 pm Pacific

Game of the Night: San Jose Sharks at Anaheim Ducks, Thursday, April 23, 2009, 10:30 pm ET/7:30 pm Pacific

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davetherave


All-Star
All-Star
This really was the Game Of The Night.

A defensive clinic by the Ducks...with some opportunistic goals sprinkled in.

The Ducks are looking like they are ready to steal this series.

beedub


Veteran
Veteran
Predicting in the playoffs is a crapshoot at best. But I called this one the polar opposite of what is happening. Jeebus! I never assumed Anaheim would put up such a slick front. I unfortunately don't get the opportunity to watch the majority of these games, but I had San Jose rolling over the Ducks

oh well

strachattack


Rookie
Rookie
I remember Ottawa having the P.O. "choker" handle. I never agreed with it personally and it certainly silenced quite a bit once they made it to the Cup. If any team deserves this handle now it's the San Jose Sharks. I don't know. I had a gut feeling Anaheim might take this series but not with this much ease. It's not over yet but it doesn't look like San Jose is capable of putting up much of a fight. Anaheim is steam rolling them. San Jose appears incapable of winning many battles down low.

I've also got to think Marleau is playing injured. Other than Cheechoo, Boyle and Blake on occasion this team appears completely over powered.

Cronie

Cronie
Co-Founder
Co-Founder
WHOA!! I am so glad I stayed up for this tilt! Was it EVER worth it.
I would have joined the chat, but the faster computer is in the basement and it's FREEZING down there... LOL

I have to agree with most people that Anaheim has SPOILER written ALL over this series, and I truly wish I could pinpoint what's afflicting or affecting the Sharks...?

It's truly bizarre, that's for sure... Strach, I think you're right. Marleau is looking off for sure.

SensGirl11

SensGirl11
Mod
Mod
DUDE!!! I can't believe the big bad Sharks got shut out yet again. It's going to be a looooooooooong summer for them. EESH!!! I guess all of these guys are nothing but regular season heroes. Can't play when it counts the most.

Enjoy the utter embarrassment you will feel all summer and all through next season.

Thornton is useless, Marleau is useless, Boyle and Blake are useless, Nabokov is useless, they're all useless.

SeawaySensFan

SeawaySensFan
Franchise Player
Franchise Player
I bet Napoleron Wilson is happy.

davetherave

davetherave
All-Star
All-Star
Ducks push No. 1 Sharks to brink of elimination as Hiller earns second shutout

Hiller, Ducks Shut Out Sharks

ANAHEIM, Calif. -- In between Bobby Ryan's two electric goals in a 4-minute span of Game 4, Anaheim's remarkable rookie accidentally broke a big pane of glass between the benches.

The Ducks will soon find out whether they also shattered the top-seeded San Jose Sharks' will with their 4-0 victory Thursday night. Ryan has a feeling his underdog club is awfully close to that breakthrough.

Game of the Night: San Jose Sharks at Anaheim Ducks, Thursday, April 23, 2009, 10:30 pm ET/7:30 pm Pacific - Page 2 Stanley_cup09

"I don't think they certainly expected this," Ryan said. "We have said all along we're not your typical 8 seed. We think we belong in that upper echelon in the Western Conference. A roller-coaster year put us there, but we thought we could make some noise, and it's showing on their faces."

Jonas Hiller backed Ryan's scoring with 31 saves in his second playoff shutout as the Ducks rocked their rivals yet again, taking a 3-1 lead. Game 5 is Saturday night at the Shark Tank, where Anaheim already won twice in the first-round series.


Fast Facts

Game of the Night: San Jose Sharks at Anaheim Ducks, Thursday, April 23, 2009, 10:30 pm ET/7:30 pm Pacific - Page 2 San Game of the Night: San Jose Sharks at Anaheim Ducks, Thursday, April 23, 2009, 10:30 pm ET/7:30 pm Pacific - Page 2 Ana
Bobby Ryan scored twice in the second period and Anaheim tacked on two late goals to take a commanding 3-1 lead over the Presidents' Trophy winners.
Jonas Hiller had his second shutout of the series and second career postseason shutout.
Ryan Whitney had one assist. He has an assist in every game of the series.
The Ducks are one win away from winning their first playoff series since winning the Stanley Cup in 2007.
Joe Thornton's goal-less streak has reached 10 straight postseason games.
San Jose has lost four of its last five playoff games.
-- ESPN Stats & Information

Corey Perry had a late goal and an assist, and Ryan Getzlaf added two assists as the Ducks emphatically moved within one victory of becoming the eighth No. 8 seed to win an NHL playoff series since 1994.

Their dynamic top line of Getzlaf, Ryan and Perry again was relentless, ignoring the Sharks' defense and dominating puck possession. Ryan, the Ducks' 22-year-old Calder Trophy finalist, has four goals in the four-game series, while Getzlaf has five points.

When Anaheim also clamped down on Joe Thornton, Patrick Marleau and the Sharks' top scorers, Hiller's job was relatively easy.

"They almost had no chance for rebounds," Hiller said. "I saw the puck quite well. ... I think everybody knows the fourth game is the most difficult to win. I think we showed a reaction tonight after the last game, where we were not happy how we played. Tonight, everybody was fighting and giving a little more."

Evgeni Nabokov made 22 saves in another unspectacular effort for the Sharks. Although they won the Presidents' Trophy with a franchise-best 117 points, they're now one game away from the worst postseason flop yet in a recent history full of embarrassing faceplants.

San Jose was knocked out in the second round in each of the past three seasons, leading to coach Ron Wilson's firing. The Sharks have never advanced past the conference finals -- and unless their top two lines awaken from their four-game slumber, the franchise could be in for a wholesale overhaul.

"I'm not surprised that they were hungry. I'm disappointed that we weren't," said Todd McLellan, the Sharks' rookie coach. "That's the only word I can use: disappointed. I think our character was questioned tonight, and we'll have to see how we respond."

McLellan didn't single out any culprits, but a few were obvious: Thornton has just two assists in the series; Marleau has one goal after scoring 38 in the regular season; and San Jose's dependable second line of Joe Pavelski, Milan Michalek and Ryane Clowe has combined for three points, including no goals for Pavelski or Michalek.

"We have to find a way to score more goals," said Nabokov, whose save percentage for the series is below 90 percent. "When you're losing the series, a lot of things get questioned. Obviously, there's something they're doing right, and something we're not doing right."

Ryan was the NHL's rookie leader with 31 goals and 57 points despite not joining the Ducks until mid-November, and he's been just as good in the postseason. He was selected a Calder finalist Wednesday, although the modest American said he'd vote for Columbus goalie Steve Mason.

He opened Game 4's scoring early in the second period, dangling in the slot before beating Nabokov. Ryan was serenaded with chants of "Bobby! Bobby!" -- and moments later, his errant stick broke the glass, causing a roughly 20-minute delay.

Less than a minute after play resumed, Ryan found himself alone in nearly the same spot in the slot, where he slammed home a rebound of Perry's shot.

Drew Miller added an empty-net goal with 40.1 seconds left.

Game notes
Anaheim made the only roster adjustment for either team from Game 3, scratching C Petteri Nokelainen and putting Ryan Carter on the ice for the first time in the series. ... A 3.8-magnitude earthquake hit Orange County about 2 1/2 hours before game time, and an aftershock gently rocked the Honda Center between the first two periods. ... D Francois Beauchemin is the only other Ducks rookie to score two goals in a playoff game, doing it April 25, 2006, against Calgary.

davetherave

davetherave
All-Star
All-Star
strachattack wrote:I remember Ottawa having the P.O. "choker" handle. I never agreed with it personally and it certainly silenced quite a bit once they made it to the Cup. If any team deserves this handle now it's the San Jose Sharks. I don't know. I had a gut feeling Anaheim might take this series but not with this much ease. It's not over yet but it doesn't look like San Jose is capable of putting up much of a fight. Anaheim is steam rolling them. San Jose appears incapable of winning many battles down low.

I've also got to think Marleau is playing injured. Other than Cheechoo, Boyle and Blake on occasion this team appears completely over powered.

I'm sure you noticed the effectiveness and tenacity of the Ducks' checking. The Sharks basically had no room to move.

Again, I keep going back to Anaheim GM's Bob Murray excellent personnel decisions like the trades that brought in Ryan Whitney and James Wisniewski, both of whom have stepped right into Top 4 D roles.

As a footnote, the two men running this club were quality, tough NHL d-men (Murray and Carlyle) in their time. They are clearly on the same page when it comes to deciding what their team is all about and how to succeed with it.

Having the players who buy in to their vision, and the will and skill to execute, the Ducks are currently 'the team no one wants to play in the playoffs'.

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