NHL Game Summary - Dallas at San Jose
(Thursday, March 25th)
Final Score: San Jose 3, Dallas 0
San Jose, CA (Sports Network) - Evgeni Nabokov made 27 saves to pick up his third shutout of the season and 50th of his career, as the San Jose Sharks clinched a playoff berth with a 3-0 victory over the Dallas Stars at HP Pavilion.
"I wanted to get it out of the way and move on," Nabokov said of his 50th shutout. "I think what's more important is the way we played."
Coming into Thursday, the Sharks needed a regulation loss by Calgary to the Islanders coupled with a win of their own to secure a spot in the postseason.
New York completed the first part of the puzzle with a 3-2 victory and San Jose won its second in a row following a six-game skid to jump into first in the Western Conference standings with 100 points. Chicago, which lost 8-3 to Columbus on Thursday, is second with 99 points.
Dan Boyle had a goal and an assist, while Rob Blake and Logan Couture also lit the lamp for the Sharks, who hold a two-point edge over Phoenix for first place in the Pacific Division. The Coyotes lost 4-3 in a shootout to Nashville on Thursday.
Marty Turco turned aside 38-of-41 shots for the Stars, who sit nine points behind the Red Wings for the final playoff spot in the West.
Following a scoreless first period, Boyle put the Sharks on the board at the 3:29 mark of the second. With San Jose on the power play, Boyle blasted a one- timer from the left point that beat traffic in front and got past Turco.
Blake made it 2-0 with a power-play goal at the 6:13 mark. Patrick Marleau's shot from the left circle set up a rebound in front for Blake, who chipped the disc into the back of the net.
San Jose then scored at the 7:41 mark of the third to make it a three-goal game. Devin Setoguchi charged down the right-wing side with a defender draped all over him while Turco dropped down to stop the shot from in close. Couture was there to sneak the rebound past Turco.
Nabokov had 13 saves in the first period and seven apiece in the second and third.
"The Sharks played pretty good. They were quick on the forecheck tonight," Stars head coach Marc Crawford said.
Dallas leads the season series with the Sharks, 3-2....Nabokov became the 25th NHL goalie to record 50 shutouts....San Jose started a three-game homestand on Thursday...The Sharks went 2-for-7 on the power play, while the Stars went 0- for-2 on the man advantage.
03/26 02:46:13 ET