As the San Jose Sharks stare down one of their most important games of the season, they know they will not only need a big effort from their top four offensive players (Patrick Marleau, Joe Pavelski, Joe Thornton and Logan Couture), but from some of their role players as well. The Sharks face the Los Angeles Kings in Saturday’s season finale, with home-ice advantage for the playoffs on the line, something they would be well-served to secure. Winger Martin Havlat has rebounded from a mid-season slump to come on strong in April, and the Sharks could definitely use continued offensive production from the veteran forward.
Havlat has four goals and seven points in April, including a five-point, three-game scoring streak that was snapped in Wednesday’s loss to the Phoenix Coyotes. That’s nearly half of his season production, as he has managed to chip in eight goals and 18 points in an abbreviated schedule. Havlat had seven goals and 27 points for the Sharks in 39 games last season, and while he isn’t scoring with the regularity he used to when with the Minnesota Wild and Chicago Blackhawks, he can still be a valuable depth player for a team like the Sharks as they try and make a deep postseason run.
Havlat is currently seeing some top-line time with Couture and Marleau, which should continue to present him with some scoring opportunities. The Sharks have struggled to score consistently this season, and with the “big four” coming through in streaks it is ever-important that players like Havlat occasionally find the back of the net as well.