San Jose (13-2-0) at Phoenix (6-6-0), 8:00 pm EDT
GLENDALE, Arizona (Ticker) — The San Jose Sharks’ success has
stemmed from their success at home. With the way they are
playing, though, it might not matter where they play.
Armed with the league’s best record, the Sharks look to extend
their winning streak to eight games when they visit the Phoenix
Coyotes on Sunday.
Filling in for the injured Evgeni Nabokov, Brian Boucher turned
aside 23 shots to help the Sharks remain the only unbeaten team
at home (9-0-0) with a 2-1 victory over the Dallas Stars on
Nabokov, the runner-up for the Vezina Trophy last season, was
scratched after suffering a lower body injury on the final shot
of a shootout victory over St. Louis on Thursday. His status
for this game is uncertain.
Thanks to captain Patrick Marleau’s game-winning goal with 29
seconds left in the third period, the Sharks also became the
fourth team in history to win their first nine home games of a
season and the first in 37 years. Todd McLellan is the second
rookie coach to accomplish the feat, joining Alex Curry of the
1925-26 Ottawa Senators.
Meanwhile, the Coyotes have not enjoyed as much success, but
their young talent has truly come to fruition with the help of
some veteran leadership.
Olli Jokinen scored a goal and had an assist to help the Coyotes
defeat his former team, the Florida Panthers, 4-1, on Saturday.
Traded in the offseason after becoming Florida’s all-time point
leader with 419, Jokinen has 13 points in 12 games with his new
A 10-year veteran, Jokinen came to the desert knowing he would
be surrounded budding talent. Taken eighth overall in 2006 and
2008, respectively, Peter Mueller and Mikkel Boedker make up the
core of the youngest team in the NHL, and they showed why
against the Panthers.
Boedker scored two goals and Mueller added another as the
Coyotes notched four unanswered goals in the final 40 minutes.
The duo helped support goaltender Ilya Bryzgalov, who started
his fifth consecutive game and made 26 saves.
Bryzgalov may be rested in this game in favor of Mikael
Tellqvist, who made 32 saves in his last outing, a 4-1 loss to
the Calgary Flames on October 25.