Evander Kane has 2 goals, assist as Sharks beat Flames

Evander Kane and Tomas Hertl both scored twice as the San Jose Sharks defeated the Calgary Flames.

CALGARY — Evander Kane‘s mastery of the Calgary Flames continued on Thursday night.

Kane and Tomas Hertl each scored twice and added an assist to lead the San Jose Sharks to a 5-2 win over the Calgary Flames in a Pacific Division showdown.

Kane has nine goals and 13 points in five games against the Flames since being acquired from Buffalo in a trade last February.

“We’re in the same division. They’re a top team. You’d like to think we rise to the occasion as a group and I thought we did that tonight,” said Kane, who had a game-high eight shots and was plus-3. “Those points are so valuable. It’s a four-point game against a team we’re chasing.”

Four consecutive wins moves the Sharks to within two points of Calgary for top spot in the division.

Brent Burns had a goal and two assists to round out the scoring for San Jose (32-16-7). The Sharks’s four-game Canadian road trip continues Saturday night in Edmonton.

Mark Jankowski and T.J. Brodie replied for Calgary (34-15-5), which lost at home in regulation for the first time in nine games. The Flames kick off a four-game road trip in Vancouver on Saturday.

Martin Jones made 36 saves in net for San Jose and improved to 26-10-4.

Jones was at his best in third period, turning aside all 12 shots he faced including diving across the crease to get the paddle of his stick on a shot from Johnny Gaudreau.

“Their power play looked really, really dangerous and he probably made six or seven quality saves that probably saved us the game,” said San Jose captain Joe Thornton.

The Flames struck first on Jankowski’s goal at 4:36 of the opening period, but the early lead unravelled in 85 seconds when the Sharks scored on three straight shots.

Kane tied it at 12:39 when he spun and sent a shot on net that dribbled through the pads of starter David Rittich. At 13:42, San Jose took the lead while shorthanded when Rittich raced to a loose puck, but fired it straight into Burns, who skated in by himself and slid it into the vacated net.

That was the end of the night for the Czech goaltender, who left after allowing two goals on six shots.

“He didn’t look comfortable. I didn’t like either goal,” Flames coach Bill Peters said.

It didn’t start off any better for Mike Smith, who was beaten by a Hertl deflection 22 seconds after entering the game. Smith stopped 16-of-19 shots and took the loss.

Down 4-1 after Kane scored on his own rebound at 16:27 of the second, the Flames got back to within two on Brodie’s power-play goal less than two minutes later.

Calgary poured on the pressure for much of the third period, but couldn’t get any closer despite several great chances.

“You’ve got to bear down. It’s the NHL and it’s not easy to score goals,” said Flames Sean Monahan, who finished a game-worst minus-3. “When you get your chances, you’ve got to be ready and put the puck in the back of the net or if not, it’s going to come back to bite you.”

One of those snake-bitten was Elias Lindholm, who had his 10-game point streak snapped. In one furious stretch in the third, his shot at an empty net hit Radim Simek in the chest, with Jones trapped out of the net.

On his next shift, Lindholm raced down the ice on a two on one and wired a shot off the goal post.

Hertl put the game away with a power-play goal with 1:23 remaining.

Notes: Thornton had an assist for his 1,000th point as a Shark. His 1,047th career assist moves him within two of Gordie Howe for ninth all-time. … Calgary falls to 24-4-1 when scoring first.


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