Patrick Marleau, Milan Michalek and former Boston
captain Joe Thornton scored in a 6:16 span of the third period to
rally the San Jose Sharks to a 5-2 victory over the Boston Bruins
in a matchup of the NHL's top two teams on Tuesday night.
The Eastern Conference-leading Bruins, on top of the NHL with 85
points, carried a 2-1 edge into the third period behind two
first-period goals by Milan Lucic. Boston had been 26-0-2 when
leading after 40 minutes.
The West-leading Sharks, trailing in the third period for only
the 12th time this season, roared back. San Jose leads the West
with 81 points.
Marleau tied the game with his 27th goal at 3:32, and Michalek
and Thornton struck 2:20 apart. Marleau assisted on the goal by
Thornton, who played his second game in Boston since he was traded
to the Sharks, on Nov. 30, 2005.
Thornton, booed when he had the puck, scored when Devin
Setogouchi's pass from behind the net hit Thornton's left skate and
beat Tim Thomas at 9:48. The goal stood up after a video review.
Marleau assisted on former Boston University star Mike Grier's
empty-net goal with 28.6 seconds left, giving the Bruins their
first three-goal loss of the season.
Ryane Clowe had three assists, and Rob Blake scored the other
San Jose goal as the Sharks spoiled Thomas' 200th NHL game.
It was the first time in 10 games the Bruins didn't earn a point
but the loss was Boston's second straight, both at home.
Lucic, who had missed eight of 16 games with a pair of injuries,
scored on two rebounds - one of Dennis Wideman's shot and the other
off a bid by Petteri Nokelainen.
In between those goals, Blake let a power-play shot go from the
right point that appeared to hit Blake Wheeler and Wideman before
sneaking past Thomas. The goal was originally given to Joe
Nokelainen left in the first period after taking what looked
like a high stick from Dan Boyle, causing a cut near the eye. No
penalty was called after a lengthy discussion because he apparently
was hit by the puck and not Boyle's stick.
In the second period, Boston's Chuck Kobasew was hit by Douglas
Murray and left the ice favoring his right leg. Late in the period,
defenseman Mark Stuart left with what appeared to be a cut near the
Kobasew and Stuart both returned for the third period.
NHL commissioner Gary Bettman was in attendance.
Bruins RW Michael Ryder is expected to miss 2-to-3 weeks after undergoing facial surgery Monday.
The Bruins are heading out for a five-game road trip. The Sharks played their second of five away from home.
Boston D Matt Hunwick was a healthy scratch. San Jose LW Jody Shelley sat out due to a lower body injury.
The Sharks are 10-1-1 against the Eastern Conference, the Bruins
7-4-1 versus the West.