Sharks going for season sweep over Coyotes

From FOX Sports - February 12, 2018

Perhaps the biggest difference between the San Jose Sharks and Arizona Coyotes isnt in the standings. Its the depth of experience up and down the bench.

Looking to complete a sweep of the four-game season series, the Sharks go for their fifth straight win over the Coyotes on Tuesday night at SAP Center.

In less than 24 hours last weekend, San Jose improved to 14-3-3 against Pacific Division foes. After posting a 6-4 victory over the Edmonton Oilers on Saturday night, the Sharks rallied with two goals in the final 9:04 and topped the Anaheim Ducks, 3-2, in a shootout on Sunday.

With 68 points, San Jose (30-18-8) is second in the Pacific Division, two points ahead of the Calgary Flames, and three in front of the Los Angeles Kings and Anaheim.

Its going to be a battle, Sharks center Logan Couture said after notching the winner in Sundays tiebreaker. Were excited for it. A lot of guys on our team have been around these battles for a while and it brings out the best of us, I believe, when were going down the stretch and battling for a spot.

San Jose has missed the postseason only twice in last 20 seasons and is just two years removed from its only Stanley Cup finals appearance. Coach Peter DeBoer credits the current veterans with the experience needed to help the younger players, such as winger Timo Meier, who has two goals and two assists in a three-game run.

Theres no doubt it starts there, he told the San Jose Mercury News. Those guys never changePav (Joe Pavelski), Burnzie (Brent Burns), Logan and (Marc-Edouard) Vlasictheir demeanor doesnt change whether were up, whether were down.

In three games against the Coyotes this season, Burns collected five of his team-high 39 assists, while Pavelski has four points (goal, three assists). Couturethe Sharks leader with 23 goalsscored twice and added a helper in the season series. He also has a goal and three assists in a three-game points streak.

One player who may benefit from facing Arizona is winger Joonas Donskoi. Hes failed to score in 13 games since registering two goals as part of his first career three-point game in the Sharks 6-5 overtime win over the Coyotes on Jan. 13.


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