San Jose Sharks Playoff Hockey: Like the Best Kind of Ulcer

When Brad Richardson fired a slapshot past Antti Niemi in the early minutes of the second period to give the Kings a 4-0 lead, that familiar feeling of dread began to seep into our living rooms. Here we go again, some of us thought.

Fans were already seeing flashbacks of a decade of playoff failures and started polluting the Facebook and Twitter airwaves with anti-Shark language that included words rhyming with “hallrucker” and “ditchbass.”

Things looked pretty hopeless after all. The Kings’ goaltender Jonathan Quick had been lights out in the net for the past two games, and the Sharks couldn’t find a way to penetrate the Rubik Cube defense which had puzzled them ever since Joe Pavelski drilled the overtime game winner in Game 1.

Their regular season MVP skated off the ice and backup goalie Niittymaki took his place between the pipes. This is normally where the Sharks sit back and get torched for two more periods, perhaps hoping that more goals from the opposition means less output in Game 3. It’s seemingly what the Canucks had in mind 2,000 miles away in Chicago.

Then something strange happened. Patrick Marlow put in an unassisted goal, making the score 4-1. The Kings suddenly couldn’t get the puck past Niittimaki, and for some reason the Sharks started scoring.

The men in teal mounted a frantic comeback, tallying three goals in the span of 11 minutes to close the gap to one. When Los Angeles finally got one past Nitti (something that was expected but nevertheless stung when it occurred), the Sharks got it back and added another one 54 seconds later for their fifth goal of the period.

Big Joe just keeps finding the right time to do his Sidney Crosby impersonation, riding on all of the momentum the Sharks had built in the last 15 minutes and slinging one into the net to stun the crowd at the Staples Center.

New score, new game.
Article Source: Bleacher Report - Los Angeles Kings