Feb 23, 2013, 1:34 AM EDT
The San Jose Sharks were on even terms with the Chicago Blackhawks when they skated upon a potentially winning chance.
Instead, the Sharks’ opportunity – a power play early in the third period – turned on itself. The Blackhawks, thanks to a Brandon Saad short-handed goal, took the lead, never looked back and accomplished NHL history with a 2-1 win over San Jose.
Naturally, Sharks bench boss Todd McLellan wasn’t about the goal being given up, or how it was given up. And it was defenseman Brent Burns, who backed off and left Saad plenty of room for the shot, that drew the coach’s ire.
“I thought we let a player in a situation that wasn’t very dangerous skate into a primary scoring spot without even challenging him,” McLellan told the San Jose Mercury News.
Added the Sharks’ Joe Thornton to CSN Chicago: “It was a good game, we started the way we wanted to start.
“We’ve been pretty good on the power play, not letting them score, but [Saad’s goal] was a killer. For the game-winning goal to be like that, it’s tough.
The Sharks continue to struggle in the month of February. One win in the last nine games has the Sharks reeling at sixth in the Western Conference and only two points ahead of the Dallas Stars and Detroit Red Wings, who both sit outside of the top eight at ninth and 10th, respectively.
Friday’s loss represented the sixth consecutive game in which the Sharks were reduced to two-goals for or less.
“Yeah, you’re [angry]. You’re not happy with it and you shouldn’t be after a loss,” McLellan told NHL.com.
“The effort was much better [than in previous losses to Chicago this season]. The battle was better. We still only scored one goal. We gave up the winner on the power play. So we should all be a little unhappy.”
- Video: Wild chase the Blues away to take series lead 23
- WATCH LIVE: Tonight’s Stanley Cup Playoff action 1
- Too little, too late: Rangers stifle Penguins for 2-1 series lead 77
- Video: Jets fans celebrate return of playoff hockey with whiteout in Winnipeg 4
- Would McLellan like to coach McDavid? ‘You can have the best player and still not have the best team’ 23
- Burrows’ instigator suspension rescinded, allowed to play Game 4 24
- No hearing scheduled for Hamhuis after Bennett headshot 13
- Sharks and McLellan have ‘mutually agreed’ to part ways 50
- Desperate Jets will ‘lean on’ their crowd tonight 19
- Here’s your Stanley Cup playoff TV schedule for tonight 16
- Of course they did: Oilers win 2015 NHL Draft Lottery, will select first overall (171)
- Stone suffered microfracture on Subban slash, Sens confirm (102)
- Report: Kings’ Stoll arrested for cocaine, MDMA possession (Updated) (99)
- Eichel understands Murray’s disappointment, but ‘extreme competitor’ has ‘a lot to offer’ (94)
- Too little, too late: Rangers stifle Penguins for 2-1 series lead (77)