A San Jose Sharks team that needs every point possible heading into the playoffs got a big win over the Detroit Red Wings on Thursday. Patrick Marleau got the scoring started for San Jose with a shorthanded tally in the first period, which was his first goal in the last eight games. The Sharks would go on to win in a shootout, and it was Marleau who scored the deciding goal in the tiebreaker.
Marleau leads the Sharks with 17 goals, but nine of those goals came in the first seven games of the season and he has been streaky since then. The Sharks finished their season series with the Red Wings with a 2-0-1 record, and could have a better overall record if the two teams met more often. Marleau has been very successful against Detroit the past few seasons, especially in contests that take place in Detroit at Joe Louis Arena. Marleau has a goal in each of his last three games there over the past two seasons, after scoring just once in the first 25 visits of his 13-year career.
Logan Couture also scored for the Sharks in regulation and in the shootout, moving into second place in team scoring with 16 goals and 29 points. The Sharks are 7-4 in the shootout this season, one more win there than any other team in the league. They currently sit fifth in the Western Conference standings, with the extra points they have taken from games decided in a shootout making a huge difference. They head into Saturday night’s game against the Dallas Stars with an 8-1-1 record in their last ten games, and will look for Marleau to continue making a big contribution.