Edmonton, AB, Canada (4E Sports) – Patrick Marleau and Logan Couture scored four of San Jose’s six goals in the first quarter as the Sharks completed the second Alberta sweep in franchise history with a 6-3 triumph over the Edmonton Oilers at Rexall Place.
Marleau and Couture both finished with two goals each, Dan Boyle and Marc-Edouard Vlasic contributed one apiece and netminder Antti Niemi tallied 26 saves as the Sharks improved to 2-0.
The Sharks matched the franchise record for goals in any period and scored six goals in a period during a road game for the first time in franchise history.
“There was a lot of talk about them skating and taking the pace and tempo to us, and we wanted to turn the tables on them a bit,” Sharks coach Todd McLellan said after the victory.
The Sharks will carry the momentum of a 2-0 start in their home opener against the Phoenix Coyotes Thursday.
Prized rookies Nail Yakupov, the first player taken in the 2012 NHL Draft, and defenseman Justin Schultz scored for the Oilers, who almost tied their franchise record of seven goals allowed in a period at Boston on Jan. 17, 1980.
“Sometimes it’s better to lose like this than lose by a goal,” said new coach Ralph Krueger. “We certainly see what we need to improve.”
It was a tough home debut for new coach Ralph Krueger, though he tried to look at the bright side.
San Jose took advantage of the Oilers’ early penalty trouble by scoring two power-play goals in a 73-second span.
Boyle connected at 3:17 during a 5-on-3 advantage and Couture got the first of his two goals, beating Devan Dubnyk with a wrist shot at 5:30 with the Sharks playing 5-on-4.
Yakupov drew cheers when he beat Antti Niemi during a power play at 8:25 for his first NHL goal, but the Sharks responded quickly and blew the game wide open.
Marleau made it 3-1 when he finished off an assist by Joe Thornton then scored the Sharks’ third power-play goal of the period 65 seconds later.
Vlasic capped the period by blasting a slap shot past Dubnyk at 19:20, giving the Sharks six goals on 17 shots.
Then, Krueger pulled out Dubnyk and brought in Yann Danis start the second period.