Joe Thornton

Video: Sharks’ Thornton hurt after heavy hit (Updated)


San Jose Sharks veteran forward Joe Thornton was hurt after being on the receiving end of a solid but clean hit in the neutral zone from Anaheim Ducks defenseman Clayton Stoner on Wednesday.

According to Kevin Kurz of CSN Bay Area, Thornton appeared to be favoring his left shoulder as he left the ice and went to the dressing room.

Sharks’ Todd McLellan: ‘We want everything on sale’


The San Jose Sharks had been red-hot on home ice. And then the Vancouver Canucks came to town and abruptly put a stop to that Tuesday.

That left Sharks’ head coach Todd McLellan to come up with some interesting answers following a 3-1 loss to the visiting Canucks. The result ended San Jose’s home winning streak at eight games. The Canucks also jump back into second in the Pacific Division, with a one-point lead on the L.A. Kings, and two-point lead on San Jose and the Calgary Flames.

“For me, there’s a price that our team has to pay to win. … We want everything on sale, is basically a good way of putting it,” said McLellan, as per Kevin Kurz of CSN Bay Area.

“The dogfight tonight— I didn’t think our dog was a pit bull, by any means,” the coach added.

The Sharks also had the benefit of two penalty shots, but only Joe Thornton was successful on his attempt, scoring stick side on Ryan Miller, who was otherwise solid, making 31 saves.

For the Canucks, Jannik Hansen was the catalyst. However, he could be hearing from the National Hockey League after he was assessed a minor penalty for a hit to the head of Tommy Wingels in the second period.

Seconds after getting out of the box, Hansen scored with a wicked wrist shot on the breakaway, giving Vancouver a two-goal lead. That’s goal No. 9 on the season for Hansen.

“I thought that was Hansen’s best game this year. He was involved and scored a big goal for us,” said Vancouver’s coach Willie Desjardins, as per the club’s Twitter account.

PHT’s top 14 of ’14: Kings stage historic comeback vs. San Jose


It’s likely that a good chunk of the teams who have been down 0-3 in playoff series have put on brave faces.

Still, hindsight has a way of making seemingly throwaway comments seem like much more. At the time, many probably rolled their eyes when Los Angeles Kings head coach Darryl Sutter said his team would not “go away quietly” against the San Jose Sharks after falling behind 0-3. With the Kings’ stunning “reverse sweep” and subsequent championship run in mind, Sutter looks more like a soothsayer.

That’s not to say that the Kings were going into Game 4 with a ton of swagger.

Captain Dustin Brown described that hole as “the most dire situation” the Kings had been in.

Let’s look back at the four games the Kings ended up winning and some of the fallout:

Game 4

Tyler Toffoli, Marian Gaborik and Justin Williams helped Los Angeles win 6-3.

Even early on, it seemed like the Kings were planting seeds that they might be able to overcome the deficit, as 3-0 leads were deemed a little less foreboding than they once were.

Game 5

The Kings “went into the cage” and forced Antti Niemi out of the Sharks’ net for a second consecutive game. Bitter San Jose fans will note that this was the game in which key defenseman Marc-Edouard Vlasic was injured. Los Angeles ended up winning 3-0.

Dan Boyle wondered if the Sharks were taking their series lead for granted.

Game 6

Los Angeles became the ninth team to force a Game 7 after being down 3-0, an accomplishment in its own right. The Kings once again won decisively, taking this one 4-1. There was some nastiness in this one:

There were plenty of negative reactions to the Sharks’ sudden slump.

Game 7

Once again, the Kings survived. Once again, the final score wasn’t particularly close, as Los Angeles beat San Jose 5-1 to become the fourth team in NHL history to erase a 3-0 deficit and win a playoff series. Incredibly, Jeff Carter and Mike Richards were on the Philadelphia Flyers team that accomplished such a feat against the Boston Bruins during the 2010 playoffs.


Williams remarked that the Kings should not “do that again,” yet it seemed like they used that big-game experience to become serious survivors in elimination situations.

Los Angeles ended up moving on and winning their second Stanley Cup, although not without remarking that they saw fear in the Sharks’ eyes during their comeback. To some extent, the Sharks are still dealing with the reverberations of that loss as the organization waffled on the subject of rebuilding, awkwardly stripped Joe Thornton of the captaincy and generally seemed to send mixed messages about how it would deal with that crushing defeat.

While the Kings’ 0-3 story ended with the Stanley Cup hoisted in the air, it appears that there are still a few chapters remaining in San Jose’s version of the story.

Rare Backstrom hat trick powers Caps’ win against Bolts


To some, Nicklas Backstrom is basically the Swedish Joe Thornton, as he piles up assists while rarely scoring many goals.

Let’s hope he doesn’t ponder the same sort of celebrations that “Jumbo Joe” mentioned regarding Tomas Hertl’s four-goal night, however, as Backstrom showed he’s not a total slouch in the goals department tonight.

His first career regular-season hat trick powered the Washington Capitals’ 4-2 win against the Tampa Bay Lightning on Saturday.

Here’s video of Backstrom’s trio, which included two Alex Ovechkin assists:

Speaking of unusual events, the hat haul apparently included a Santa cap:

Apparently Backstrom’s scored a hat trick in his NHL career, just not in the regular season, as Mike Vogl of the team’s website notes that he collected one against the Montreal Canadiens in Game 2 of that tide-turning 2010 playoff series:

Thornton passes Beliveau as Sharks top Wild


Joe Thornton setup both San Jose goals Thursday night as the Sharks edged the Minnesota Wild 2-1.

With his pair of assists, Thornton passed the late Jean Beliveau on the NHL’s all-time points list.

Brent Burns and Joe Pavelski had the goals for the Sharks while Alex Stalock made 18 saves for the win.

Here’s Thornton’s historical point:

San Jose has now won six of seven.

Christian Folin had the lone Wild goal – his first career NHL marker.

Darcy Kuemper made 28 saves as the Wild lost for the second time in three games.