Brent Burns scored two power-play goals, Martin Jones made 26 saves for his second Stanley Cup Playoff shutout, and the San Jose Sharks defeated the St. Louis Blues 4-0 in Game 2 of the Western Conference Final at Scottrade Center on Tuesday.
Dainius Zubrus had a goal and an assist, and Tommy Wingels scored for the Sharks, who tied the best-of-7 series 1-1.
Logan Couture had two assists to give him 19 points in the 2016 playoffs, breaking Igor Larionov’s franchise record of 18 in 1994.
Entering the game, the Sharks felt like they needed to have more desperation in their game than they had in their 2-1 loss in Game 1.
“Very urgent,” Sharks captain Joe Pavelski told the media after Game 1. “Every game counts, every win matters. If we can come out of here with a split that would be a pretty good start for us. You don’t want to go down in a 2-0 hole. The urgency will be there.”
Sharks center Logan Couture added: “It’s another chance to redeem ourselves. We didn’t play our best game in Game 1. The chances that we’ve had to play a better game in these playoffs, we’ve done that. So another opportunity for us.”
The Sharks again took an early 1-0 lead on a Tommy Wingels goal from Dainius Zubrus and Justin Braun at the 2:07 mark. Zubrus earned his first postseason assist.
The Sharks led the Blues 1-0 after 20 minutes. They outshot their opponent 10-9.
Sharks defenseman Brent Burns was slashed by Blues’ right wing Troy Brouwer at 6:46 of the second period. Burns also took advantage of the power play by sending a pass from Joe Pavelski whistling past St. Louis goalie Brian Elliott. San Jose took a 2-0 lead at 7:04.
The Sharks led the Blues 2-0 after 40 minutes.
Patrick Marleau high-sticked Carl Gunnarsson 32 seconds into the third period, earning a double-minor. The Blues had a chance to break through, but their execution on the four minute power play was atrocious for the most part. Jones denied Brouwer from the slot with his right pad late on the extended advantage.
Burns cranked a one-timer from the top of the left circle past Elliott for his second power play goal of the game, extending the Sharks’ lead to 3-0 at 11:38 of the thir.
Dainius Zubrus flipped a backhand shot into the empty net from his own zone for his first postseason goal, sealing the victory in the final seconds of the game.
The Sharks topped the Blues 4-0 in Game 2 to even the series at 1-1. Martin Jones made 26 saves for San Jose. Brian Elliott made 20 saves for St. Louis.
The Sharks’ special teams played a large role in the team’s victory. San Jose went 2-for-5 on the power play, while St. Louis missed out on all six power play opportunities.
The entire Sharks team had a reason to be proud of themselves on Tuesday night.
“It was a great job by everybody tonight,” Sharks captain Joe Pavelski said.
Injured: Matt Nieto (undisclosed)
Scratched: Matt Tennyson, Dylan DeMelo, Micheal Haley
Scratched: Robert Bortuzzo, Ryan Reaves, Magnus Paajarvi, Dmitrij Jaskin, Petteri Lindbohm, Chris Butler, Peter Harrold, Ty Rattie, Anders Nilsson
Up Next: The series will shift to SAP Center, as Game 3 is scheduled for Thursday at 6:00 pm PT on TVA, CBC, and NBCSN.