What else was Martin Jones supposed to do?
The San Jose Sharks goalie had played out of his mind, especially in overtime, making a number of unbelievable saves as the Edmonton Oilers applied relentless pressure in search of the winner.
Of the saves Jones made, his best came off Connor McDavid on a two-on-one rush — a game-saving stop at the time.
Jones came sprawling across the crease in desperation to make a spectacular left-pad stop on the Oilers star. It gave his Sharks teammates a chance to find their legs again.
But that never happened. San Jose didn’t register its first overtime shot until after the midway point of the period.
The Oilers dominated the overtime and finally ended it on a goal from David Desharnais, taking a 4-3 win and a 3-2 series lead. That puts the defending Western Conference champs on the brink of elimination in the opening round.
Edmonton had 14 shots on goal in overtime. San Jose? Only two. It was completely lopsided.
The Sharks now need a win in Game 6 to force a seventh and deciding game, after they were 2:46 away from winning Thursday’s contest in regulation and instead sending this series back to San Jose with the chance to close out the Oilers.
Instead, the Oilers came roaring back, erasing a two-goal deficit. It started with a massive McDavid hit on Marcus Sorensen, picked up momentum on a Mark Letestu goal late in the second period and continued with an Oscar Klefbom rocket of a slap shot off the post and in to tie the game late in regulation.
A big question heading into Thursday was how would the Oilers respond after such a bad loss in Game 4? They had a great start in Game 5, then watched as San Jose took over on the score board with three straight goals.
But every time the Oilers have been forced to respond after a bad game (think back to their win in Game 2 after opening the series with a loss, and then the same situation from Games 4 and 5), they’ve been up to the challenge so far.
“It’s a cliche, but we played on our toes tonight,” said Oilers coach Todd McLellan. “We were aggressively hunting pucks.”