The San Jose Sharks continue their four-game road swing on Saturday afternoon when they take on the New Jersey Devils in Newark, N.J.
The Sharks opened their trip with a 5-2 loss to the New York Islanders on Tuesday. They rebounded two days later with a 3-2 overtime victory over the host New York Rangers.
The win was the first of the season for San Jose.
Sharks coach David Quinn, who was behind the Rangers’ bench for three seasons from 2018-21, praised his new club’s resilience in his return to New York.
“I can’t go to CVS and buy confidence pills,” Quinn said. “You get it by playing the right way and doing the right thing and watching your teammates do the right thing. At some point in time you’ve got to say enough is enough, and I thought that’s what they did after the second period. They’re just tired of losing, and I thought they understood what it’s going to take for us to win.”
Quinn received a chorus of boos from the Rangers’ faithful after a “thank you message” appeared on the center-ice jumbo screen.
Defenseman Erik Karlsson credited Timo Meier for a nice setup on his game-winning goal in overtime.
“I get in a situation where I think they’re going to call a penalty, and when I realize they’re not, it’s either what happened or they’re going to have a 2-on-0 the other way,” Karlsson said. “I found my balance well and felt like I had control of the puck even though it might not have looked like it. Timo did a great job staying patient and he found me for an easy goal.”
Meier recorded an assist in his 400th career regular-season game.
The Devils also found themselves on the winning side of things on Thursday when they handily took down the rival Islanders on the road. New Jersey took a three-goal lead late into the third period in an eventual 4-1 victory.
Devils head coach Lindy Ruff believes the club is starting to come together.
“Everybody’s just starting to jell together,” Ruff said. “Everything is coming together, and it takes a little (time). … I think we found some stuff that works.
Newcomer Ondrej Palat scored twice to lead the offensive attack and is confident in the offense moving forward.
“We’re going to score,” Palat said, “We have the talent. This is the way we have to play.”
Thursday’s victory marked the club’s second consecutive win after opening the season with back-to-back 5-2 losses.
The Devils dressed 11 forwards and seven defensemen Thursday with rookie Alexander Holtz sitting as the healthy scratch up front. Defenseman Kevin Bahl drew in on the back end and logged 10:35 of ice time, the lowest total among all 18 Devils skaters.
Saturday’s tilt marks the teams’ lone contest in Newark this season. They meet up again in San Jose on Jan. 16.
–Field Level Media