ANAHEIM, Calif. (AP)Erik Karlsson and Nico Sturm scored eight seconds apart in the Sharks’ three-goal second period, and Eetu Makiniemi won his first NHL start with 23 saves in San Jose’s 6-1 victory over the Anaheim Ducks on Friday night.
Timo Meier and Karlsson had a goal and an assist apiece for the Sharks, who snapped a four-game losing streak with just their second win in nine games.
After Makiniemi made his NHL debut in relief of Kaapo Kahkonen on Wednesday, the 23-year-old Finnish goalie capitalized on another chance to play during James Reimer’s seven-game injury absence.
”I would say that the start was a little nervous, but the longer the game went, the better I felt,” Makiniemi said. ”I feel like in this league, you need to be ready all the time.”
Scott Harrington scored his first goal for San Jose in the decisive second. Former Ducks forward Nick Bonino scored an empty-netter with 3:42 to play, and Steven Lorentz added yet another Sharks goal 25 seconds later.
Trevor Zegras scored and John Gibson allowed four goals on 19 shots before leaving early with an illness for the NHL-worst Ducks, who have lost seven of eight. Anaheim beat Carolina on Tuesday, but has won consecutive games only once all season.
”It’s really unfortunate, because we played a really solid, good game (against the Hurricanes) and we wanted to build off it,” Anaheim coach Dallas Eakins said. ”Couple of unfortunate (goals allowed), but it really didn’t matter because we just could not get our legs and couldn’t find the game we played against Carolina.”
Anthony Stolarz took over in net for the third period for Gibson, who said between periods he was having trouble breathing on the ice.
Sharks defenseman Jaycob Megna played against his older brother, Jayson, for the first time in their parallel NHL careers. The Megnas had faced off in the USHL and again in one recent game in the AHL, but the former college teammates at Nebraska-Omaha had never met in the top league.
”It’s a little weird whenever we play against each other,” said Jaycob Megna, who spent his first six professional seasons in the Ducks organization. ”He’s led the way for us in this game.”
The Ducks claimed Jayson Megna off waivers from Colorado on Tuesday, and he made his Anaheim debut against the Sharks. The brothers’ parents got to Orange County in time to watch the showdown.
”That was really cool, definitely a dream come true,” Jayson Megna said. ”We always dreamed about it. A lot of mini-sticks in the basement, lots of holes in the wall. … Feels like a long time coming. It was a really cool experience for the family, for sure.”
Meier got his 14th goal midway through the first period with a tap-in on an exceptional pass from Karlsson.
Harrington, a journeyman defenseman playing his fourth game for San Jose after signing in September, then scored the eighth goal of his nine-season NHL career and first since Feb. 8, 2021, with Columbus.
After Karlsson got his 12th goal on a power play just 1:34 later, Sturm put the Sharks up 4-0 when Matt Benning’s dump-in off the ensuing faceoff ricocheted bizarrely off the side boards and then the goalpost to fall right to Sturm in the slot.
Zegras broke up Makiniemi’s shutout bid less than two minutes later with his 10th goal of the season.
Sharks: Lorentz returned from a one-game absence with an illness, and CJ Suess was scratched. … Harrington played back-to-back games for San Jose for the first time.
Sharks: Host Arizona on Tuesday.
Ducks: At Ottawa on Monday to open a five-game road trip.
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