Apex Predator: Canucks & Sharks, Game Five


San Jose Sharks

@ Vancouver Canucks

  6:00 PM PST

Sharks   Canucks
9 Wins 11
8 Losses 6
0 OTL 2
2.88 (7th) Goals/Game 2.76 (8th)
3.24 (12th) Goals Against/Game 2.59 (6th)
18.8% (9th) PP 28.8% (3rd)
76% (13th) PK 80.9% (8th)

Fast Facts

> Full Throttle: Having been in a 3-1 series lead twice already (and, yes, blowing it twice) Vancouver knows better than most teams how hard shutting down an opponent really is. They’ll need their full bag of tricks to get by a San Jose team that has been playing fine at ES and could have knotted their series at two had their PP helped them out. If they have any killer instinct in their tank, Vancouver should flex it tonight, aiming to score first, score often and avoid another quick flight to San Jose. One would think the zebras will shield their whistles as best they can, increasing the pressure on the top six to produce, some timely pinches from the defense and owning the neutral zone. Speed kils and the Canucks have to make that their asset once again as the game moves past the 20 minute mark. Luongo saw plenty of pucks in game four and here’s hoping one more strong game from the netminder is what punches their ticket to the big show.

> Leave It Out On The Ice:

Forget demons, forget choking, forget last year and subsequent campaigns, forget all of it. The only way San Jose wins tonight, and then two more, is if they regain the composure and poise they had towards the end of the regular season. Marleau has been excellent this series and could help offset the hurting Thornton with a strong game. Someone contact Interpol because Heatley, Setoguchi and Pavelski are missing and are badly needed in their support roles. Both teams have been guilty of making a conga line to the penalty box, but with no room for error, San Jose simply has to play more reserved. If Demers can yank Huskins out of the lineup, that’s as good a place as any to start looking for a hero. Lastly Niemi has to be a beast and forget his game four .692 SV%. A complete team effort through three periods along with some puck luck means another game in San Jose.

> Impress Your Friends With Knowledge!: Vancouver is 3-9 in game five’s going back to 1996 and 12-14 all time. Yuck.