LOS ANGELES, Calif. – The Kings were cruising along with a four-goal lead. Then came an offensive barrage by the San Jose Sharks so swift and stunning that Los Angeles never could answer.
Devin Setoguchi scored 3:09 into overtime to give the Sharks a 6-5 victory and a 2-1 lead in their first-round playoff series on Tuesday night.
“This is a game that you don’t expect to happen. I don’t think it will repeat itself,” San Jose coach Todd McLellan said. “We were very fortunate to come back from that deficit. We’re excited about it, but we also know the mulligan we used won’t be available to us again.”
It was San Jose’s second overtime win in three games after taking the series opener 3-2.
Setoguchi’s wrist shot beat Jonathan Quick to cap the Sharks’ rally from a 4-0 deficit in the second period, when the teams combined for seven goals.
“The second you hang your head and feel sorry for yourself then it turns into six, seven, eight to nothing,” Setoguchi said.
“We got that goal in the second period and all of a sudden the light turned on that we can do it, we can get pucks past this guy. We got it deep, worked hard, we beat guys off the wall. We got the second and third opportunities that led to the goals.”
Game 4 is Thursday at Staples Center.
After all the scoring in the second period, both teams failed to convert scoring chances in the third, when there were no penalties.
Antero Nittymaki stopped 11 shots after replacing Antti Niemi, who was pulled early in the second after the Kings scored their fourth consecutive goal.
Quick made 30 saves for the Kings, who had no shots in overtime.
“It stings right now. We got to let it go right away,” Matt Greene said. “You give yourself tonight, you feel bad about it, but tomorrow’s a new day. It would have been the same way if we’d won 4-0. We have to try to get back and get this series tied up.”
Patrick Marleau triggered three straight goals and five altogether by the Sharks in the second when he tipped in a shot at 3:08 for his first point of the playoffs. He and Niclas Wallin assisted on Setoguchi’s game-winner.
“It’s definitely a little bit of a confidence booster for us,” Setoguchi said. “They’re going to be hungry and they’re going to be ready to avenge this game.”
San Jose’s Ryane Clowe scored the game’s lone power-play goal to make it 4-2. The puck went off Willie Mitchell’s left hand and into the net at 6:53. Logan Couture pulled the Sharks to 4-3 with a shot that found the upper right corner of the net at 13:32.
The Kings answered five seconds later, with Ryan Smyth’s goal at 13:37 keeping them ahead 5-3.
Then the Sharks scored 54 seconds apart to tie the game at 5-5. With Quick pulled wide right, Clowe found plenty of open space for a shot on the left side at 18:35. Joe Pavelski’s shot hit the right post and went in with 31 seconds left in the second period, when the Sharks outshot the Kings 18-8. Pavelski scored the winner in OT in the series opener.
“That’s as bad as it gets in the second period for sure,” Kings coach Terry Murray said. “We did this to ourselves with our puck management and whatever you want to call it.
“There are guys out there in the second period for 2½ minutes where we couldn’t get a line change especially with our defencemen. So you’re exhausted, you’re getting rattled, you start doing things that are very odd and now they’re playing the game they want.”
Mitchell and rookie Kyle Clifford scored 13 seconds apart during a three-goal first period for the Kings.
Mitchell’s wrist shot and a backhander by Clifford stunned Niemi twice in the game’s first 2½ minutes, getting and keeping the Kings’ white towel-waving fans on their feet. Dustin Penner earned his first point of the series, assisting on Mitchell’s goal along with Dustin Brown.
Los Angeles led 3-0 when Michal Handzus’ first goal of the series sailed under Niemi’s legs.
Brad Richardson won a faceoff against Couture in the neutral zone, then had a takeaway in the offensive zone to set up his first goal of the playoffs 44 seconds intothe second. Richardson got the puck by Niemi, who had lost his stick, to extend the Kings’ lead to 4-0 and chase Niemi.
Notes: The overhead scoreboard malfunctioned near the end of the first period, leaving fans to check smaller scoreboards at each end of the arena until midway through the second. … The shortest time between goals scored by the Kings in the playoffs was 11 seconds on April 22, 1990, against Edmonton. … The teams combined to score seven goals in the second period, two short of the record for a Kings’ playoff game, which was nine against Calgary on April 10, 1990. … The announced sellout crowd of 18,216 was standing room only. … Kings C Anze Kopitar, out of the playoffs because of an ankle injury, got a big cheer when shown watching the game from a box seat.