This is one of the most exciting moments of the year for fans of Hockey as we are in the middle of the playoffs, and yesterday, the Sharks and the Red Wings were the first two teams to play the initial game of the semifinals, with the victory coming for San Jose with a 4-3 score.
Devin Setoguchi and Dany Heatley were the first men to score in the first period, helping the Sharks to end with a series of losses (4) playing at home in a giving series. Such goals gave the team a quick start and allowed them to take a good advantage against Detroit.
San Jose was the team that rested the most before the second round of the playoffs as they had 4 days to recover after they swept Colorado in 6 games while the Red Wings played just 48 hours after they managed to beat Phoenix in game seven, but they clearly showed no clear signs of fatigue.
Game two is coming on Sunday night at the HP Pavilion at San Jose.
Mike Babcock, Detroit’s coach, was actually pleased with the performance of his team. He said that they did not play a poor match, and that it was actually a couple of mistakes on their end what allowed San Jose to approach their net and score.
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After an outstanding 3-0 lead during the first two periods, the Sharks entered the 3rd one with only one goal of difference, but then Joe Pavelski managed to put things 4-2 by beating Detroit’s goaltender Jimmy Howard with a side shot and only fifty seconds remaining in the period.
The Sharks had not taken a lead of 1-0 in a series since beating the Red Wings at their own home 3 years back, but Detroit came from below and actually won the series against San Jose in 6 games. That was clearly just another disappointing playoff appearance for the Sharks, who now have the 2nd best records concerning the regular season against Detroit over the last 5 years, but they still have not managed to pass from the 2nd round.
Certainly, nothing would be better to remove the “underachiever” label from the Sharks playoff record but to beat the 2-time defending champions of the Western Conference, the Red Wings, who are actually seeing as many as the favorites in this semifinals. I would say the Sharks will end up beating Detroit in 6 matches.
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