Sharks' onslaught has Kings stunned


SAN JOSE, Calif. -- A year ago, it took the San Jose Sharks seven games to score 10 goals on Jonathan Quick.

To a man in a dejected dressing following Game 7 last May, the Sharks felt Quick was the difference in the heartbreaking series loss.

Not sure whether the Sharks had voodoo dolls of Quick ordered before this year's series, but in just five periods against the 2012 Conn Smythe Trophy winner, they've put 12 pucks behind him.

Not exactly what the Sharks would have predicted in their wildest dreams before this series began.

"Could I have envisioned it? No, I would be lying," Sharks head coach Todd McLellan said following Sunday night's 7-2 whipping of the Los Angeles Kings.

"Yesterday, I talked about the fact I didn't think we'd be in this situation again, but we ended up there," added the Sharks coach. "Again, I don't think this series is going to play out in blowouts like this night after night. They're a very good hockey club, they're going to find their game and we have to be prepared for that."

Sadly for the Kings, Quick is far from their biggest concern.

The mesmerizing two-game onslaught by the Sharks, outscoring the 2012 Cup champs 13-5, is nothing short of stunning.

Nobody doubted the Sharks had the potential to beat the Kings. These are evenly matched contenders, after all.

But like this? In this fashion?

Holy mama.

Wave after wave after wave, from the top line to the fourth line, the Sharks' speed and forecheck is causing mayhem for the Kings, who look slow-footed and a step behind as the Sharks dominate puck possession and produce odd-man rush after odd-man rush.

"I know that we need to play that way," McLellan said of his team's heart-stopping pace. "We've got to get the puck going.

"It's been a focus of our organization over the last few years to up the speed element. We want to play a fast game. We feel that's what we need to do to have success."

Logan Couture in alone and beating Quick for the sixth goal of the night Sunday was the exclamation point on a two-game barrage that will have Los Angeles doing a lot of thinking heading into Game 3 Tuesday night at Staples Center.

"It obviously stinks, sitting here talking after another lopsided loss, but they did what they set out to do," Kings veteran winger Justin Williams said. "Now it is response time. Now we're coming back to our rink. We won the first two in our arena last year and they came back and won the next two in theirs. We're looking to repeat that but we have to start with one."

It started just fine for the Kings on Sunday, first-period goals by Jake Muzzin and Trevor Lewis spotting the visitors a 2-0 lead through 20 minutes.

But then the Sharks pushed back, fueled once again by Andrew Desjardins' fourth-line unit, which tied the game on goals by Mike Brown and Raffi Torres. And the ice stayed tilted the rest of the night.

"I think their [James] Sheppard line and Desjardins line dominated the second period," said Kings head coach Darryl Sutter. "We didn't have an answer for that."

  • 1
  • |
  • 2
Join the Discussion
blog comments powered by Disqus
You Might Also Like...