The San Jose Sharks are incapable of having a slow-paced series, or even a slow-paced game. They had leads of 2-0 and 3-1 in Game 3 against St. Louis but the Blues scored three goals in about 14 minutes to take a 4-3 lead. Who else but Couture would tie the game late to send us to overtime.
It certainly wouldn’t be the 2019 NHL Playoffs if we didn’t have a controversy. Just over five minutes into the extra frame, Timo Meier committed a clear hand pass in the offensive zone to Gustav Nyquist, and then Nyquist passed to Erik Karlsson, who sealed the 5-4 win. The hand pass was missed by all the officials and it is not a reviewable play. It’s not like it was a sneaky play either, as Meier full swiped at the puck. It was a pretty wild scene in St. Louis as the refs were discussing amongst themselves what each of them saw – apparently nothing – while the replay on the scoreboard showed what happened to all the fans. Regardless, San Jose has taken a 2-1 series lead with Game 4 on Friday night.
The kicker to all this: Meier was given an assist on the overtime goal. I mean, rightfully so, but just think about that for a second.
David Perron made his mark on the series with a pair of goals as Colton Parayko had three assists. Parayko had one real nice setup where instead of ditching the puck to the line and creating a battle up high, he held onto the puck on a pinch in deep, drew the defenders, and then dished off. One pass later, and Perron scored.
Joe Thornton had two of the San Jose goals and was looking creative in the offensive zone as he always is. It’s nice to see him play so well even after this many years and all the recent injuries.
There was an unfortunate injury as Vince Dunn was hit in the mouth with a shot just past the mid-point of the first period and left the game. Replays showed him to be bleeding and woozy. There’s no need to post that highlight here, but he did not return to the game and they’re calling it an upper-body injury. It didn’t look good.
The rumours had been swirling for a couple weeks now but Buffalo made it official on Wednesday: Ralph Krueger will be the team’s next head coach, filling the vacancy following Phil Housley. Krueger will be familiar to hockey fans as he was the coach for the Oilers during the lockout-shortened season and was also the bench boss for the surprising Team Europe at the 2016 World Cup of Hockey.
Seeing quotes floating around social media, it seems like his former players liked him a lot. They praise his both his preparedness and ingenuity, two things absolutely crucial for any coach to succeed in th