Sharks open the season with shootout win over Coyotes

San Jose Sharks goaltender Martin Jones (31) celebrates with Sharks center Logan Couture (39) after a shootout of an NHL hockey game against the Arizona Coyotes Thursday, Jan. 14, 2021, in Glendale, Ariz. The Sharks defeated the Coyotes 4-3. (Ross D. Franklin / AP)

GLENDALE, Ariz. — Martin Jones stopped Clayton Keller in a shootout and the San Jose Sharks bounced back after Arizona's Phil Kessel scored with 3.2 seconds left in regulation, beating the Coyotes 4-3 Thursday night.

The Coyotes trailed 3-1 after Evander Kane's goal midway through the third period, but scored twice in the final 3:30 to force overtime. Keller scored the first after some nifty stickhandling by Conor Garland and Kessel tied it on a rebound.

Jones stopped the Coyotes on a two-man break in overtime and turned Keller away after Garland hit the post on the previous attempt. Jones had 34 saves in the 2021 opener for both teams.

Tomas Hertl had two goals and an assist for San Jose. Kane added a goal and two assists.

Darcy Kuemper stopped 32 shots for Arizona.

Arizona made its first post-season appearance in eight years in last year's NHL bubble and returned nearly everyone on the back end. The Coyotes lost several key forwards, including former league MVP Taylor Hall, and replaced them with six new players who they hoped would add a bit of grit.

The Sharks relocated to Arizona for training camp and the start of the season due to strict coronavirus protocols in Santa Clara County.

They seemed to feel at ease in their temporary home, scoring twice in the first period. Hertl had both goals on rebounds, the first on a power play.

Jones was sharp in his crease, turning away a couple of short breakaways and a late power play.

The Coyotes buzzed to start the second period and Garland scored late on a power play, beating Jones on a shot that hit Sharks defenceman Brent Burns' stick.

The Coyotes continued to pressure the Sharks in the third period, but Kane slipped behind their defence for a short breakaway and lifted a shot over Kuemper midway through.

The Coyotes kept pushing, scoring on Keller's shot from just outside the crease and Kessel's goal on a second whack at a rebound.


The Sharks and Coyotes play the second of the two-game series on Saturday.


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