Sharks aware of Anaheim Ducks’ resiliency: “They might win a game tonight”

Anaheim Ducks defenseman Kevin Bieksa, left, battles San Jose Sharks right wing Kevin Labanc for the puck during the first period of Game 2 of an NHL hockey first-round playoff series in Anaheim, Calif., Saturday, April 14, 2018. (AP Photo/Chris Carlson)

SAN JOSE — To no one’s surprise, most of the Sharks players really didn’t pay much attention to the second round series between Anaheim and Edmonton last year after they were bounced out of the playoffs by the Oilers in the opening round.

“No, I didn’t, actually,” center Logan Couture said.

“No, didn’t really watch any of that,” defenseman Justin Braun said. “Kind of hurts to watch.”

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As a refresher, the Ducks lost to the Oilers on home ice in both games 1 and 2. But Anaheim felt much better about the way it played in the second game, and went on to beat the Oilers twice in Edmonton to level the series before coming back home.

The Ducks went on to capture the series in seven games and advance to the Western Conference final.

The past might have little to do with the present. The Sharks hold a 2-0 lead in the opening round series going into Game 3 on Monday night at SAP Center, and no one’s thinking about what Anaheim accomplished in 2017.

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Still, Anaheim felt much better about the way it played in Game 2 on Saturday and are plenty capable of shifting momentum with one win. The Ducks only lost three straight games in regulation time once this season, from March 8-12, which was followed by a 10-1-1 streak.

A handful of San Jose’s players as members of the Sharks have been in this spot before, as well.

In 2013 in a first round series against the Vancouver Canucks, the Sharks won two games at Rogers Arena, then won the next two at home to sweep the …read more

Source:: The Mercury News – Sports


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