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Question of the Day
SAN JOSE, Calif. (AP) - Even on a night when the play was hampered by choppy ice, the puck still seems to find Joe Pavelski and he keeps finding the net.
“It feels how you should play the game all the time, to be honest,” Pavelski said. “It’s the way you picture it. I’ve just visualized this a few times, so it shouldn’t be anything new.”
Pavelski scored on a deflection in the first period and on the power play in the second to give him five goals in his past two games and 18 in the past 20 to tie Anaheim’s Corey Perry with 27 on the season. Washington’s Alex Ovechkin leads the league with 35.
“It’s fun to watch,” teammate Tommy Wingels said. “They go in a whole different variety of ways as you saw tonight. When you’re hot, you’re hot. He’ll certainly take it and as a team we’ll take it as well.”
Wingels also scored and Antti Niemi made 21 saves for the Sharks, who returned home from a perfect three-game road trip with a win over struggling Calgary to open a pre-Olympic stretch of eight games out of 10 at home.
“We’re disappointed in the loss, but you can’t fault the effort,” forward Matt Stajan said. “We had our chances. If we continue to work like that we’ll give ourselves a chance no doubt about it.”
Pavelski followed up his first career hat trick on Saturday in Tampa Bay with his third multi-goal game in his past six as he thrives on a line with Joe Thornton and Brent Burns. Pavelski is four goals shy of matching his career high of 31 set two seasons ago.
He broke a tie late in the second period after Stajan was sent off for interfering with Eriah Hayes on the only penalty of the game.
After a broken play at the blue line, Jason Demers kept the puck in the offensive zone and passed to Thornton, who was all alone on the opposite side of the ice. Thornton fired a cross-ice pass to Pavelski, who was alone near the front of the net and deflected the pass past Ramo to give the Sharks a 3-2 lead.
“The ice was just so bouncy tonight I just tried to get it in the general direction,” Thornton said. “He just made a great play, just hand-eye coordination. He’s just playing great right now. The puck seems to hit him right now and go in.”
The Sharks responded with two goals in a 21-second span with Pavelski tipping Justin Braun’s point shot for the first and Wingels beating Ramo with a bad angle shot from near the boards to snap a 15-game goalless stretch.
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