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Vancouver at San Jose

Sharks 4, Canucks 2

CBSSports.com wire reports
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SAN JOSE, Calif. -- Playing simple hockey has translated into three straight wins for the San Jose Sharks.

Behind a goal and two assists from Patrick Marleau, the Sharks maintained a two-point division lead over Phoenix and a three-point edge over Chicago in the race for the top seed in the Western playoffs.

Marleau's 42nd goal gave the Sharks the lead midway through the second period. They went on to beat the Vancouver Canucks 4-2 on Saturday night.

"We gave up that one earlier," Marleau said. "But we kept playing, stuck with it and came up with a couple in the second to take the lead. We talked about keeping the simple approach. Obviously, the little details mean a lot at this stage of the season. We started doing that in the last three games and gotten results."

The Sharks (46-19-10) have bounced back from a five-game losing streak that dropped them out of first place in the Pacific Division. They moved back atop the division and the Western Conference on Thursday when they beat Dallas.

One concern for the Sharks is that center Joe Thornton went down with 4:37 left in the second period. Thornton, who leads the team in assists (66) and points (85), was hit by Alexander Edler near Vancouver's net. He went forward and his legs buckled. Then he fell to the ice.

Sharks coach Todd McLellan declined to speculate about Thornton's injury or whether he would play against the Colorado Avalanche on Sunday.

"I haven't got an update that I can share with you at this point," McLellan said. "He left the game and didn't return and he's being evaluated now. Joe always wants to play but we have to see if he can. I haven't spoken with or heard from him yet."

Ryane Clowe who saw Thornton go down reacted with surprise that Thornton didn't get back up and start skating.

"It was just one of those bang-bang plays," Clowe said. "Joe, since I began to play with him, has never missed a game. I never have seen him go down very much. So when he stayed down we all just reacted."

Joe Pavelski scored two minutes after Marleau. Clowe added an empty-netter with 11 seconds left to make it 4-2. Dany Heatley also scored for San Jose.

San Jose goalie Evgeni Nabokov earned his 40th win of the season. He made 35 saves and has allowed only three goals during the winning streak. He has won five straight home games against Vancouver.

Vancouver's Henrik Sedin, the NHL scoring leader, had two assists to push his point total to 101.

Alexandre Burrows tallied his 34th goal of the season in the first period to give the Canucks a 1-0 lead. Sedin earned his 100th point with an assist.

It is just the fourth time a Canucks player has tallied 100 points, and the first since Markus Naslund did it in the 2002-03 season. The assist was his career-best 72nd.

"It's a milestone," Sedin said. "It means something for sure and it's something you can look back on later. I thought I'd never reach that total, so it's real nice."

Sedin's twin brother, Daniel, made it 3-2 when he scored with 12:05 remaining -- assisted by Henrik.

The Canucks, who are stellar at home, fell to 18-18-2 on the road. Vancouver didn't lose any ground in the Northwest Division because Colorado lost to Phoenix. The Canucks have 94 points, five more than Colorado. Vancouver has seven games remaining. Colorado will play eight.

Heatley tied the game 1-1 in the second period when he scored a power-play goal with 16:59 left. It was Heatley 39th goal, 18th on the power play.

Notes

Nabokov joined New Jersey's Martin Brodeur as the only NHL goalies to register three straight 40 win seasons. Brodeur did it from the 2005-2006 season to the 2007-2008 campaign. ... D Jay Leach and LW Jamie McGinn were healthy scratches for the Sharks. ... Canucks RW Pavel DeMitra missed the game because of personal reasons. Defensemen Andrew Alberts and Nolan Baumgarthner were also scratched by Vancouver. ... Sharks C Scott Nichol returned to the lineup after missing two games because of an upper body injury. ... Vancouver's remaining three road games will be played in California.

Copyright 2014 by STATS LLC and The Associated Press. Any commercial use or distribution without the express written consent of STATS LLC and The Associated Press is strictly prohibited.
 
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Scoreboard
Vancouver (45-26-4)1012
San Jose  (46-19-10) «0314
Three Stars
P. Marleau
SJ


Goals: 1
Assist(s): 3
H. Sedin
VAN


Goals: 0
Assist(s): 2
J. Pavelski
SJ


Goals: 1
Assist(s): 0
Scoring Summary
1ST PERIOD
09:38Alex Burrows (34), Snap Shot. Assist: Sedin
2ND PERIOD
03:01Power Play - Dany Heatley (39), Wrist Shot. Assist: Marleau, Boyle
09:29Patrick Marleau (42), Backhand Shot, Unassisted.
11:30Joe Pavelski (23), Slap Shot. Assist: Marleau, Blake
3RD PERIOD
07:55Power Play - Daniel Sedin (23), Slap Shot. Assist: Burrows, Sedin
19:49Ryane Clowe (19), Empty Net. Assist: Marleau, Blake
Penalty Summary
1ST PERIOD
13:57Sedin, 2 min, Cross-Checking
15:03Boyle, 2 min, Tripping
2ND PERIOD
02:17Bieksa, 2 min, Hooking
08:18Raymond, 2 min, Tripping
08:26Pavelski, 2 min, High-Sticking
17:06Wallin, 2 min, Hooking
3RD PERIOD
07:13Boyle, 2 min, Slashing
Shots On Goal
 123T
Vancouver9151337
San Jose716730
Goalies
GoalieMINSSGA
Roberto Luongo59:02263
Evgeni Nabokov60:00352
Game Information
Attendance - 17562
Referees - Tom Kowal, Bill McCreary
Linesmen - Brian Mach, Mark Wheler
 
Other Games
Dal 4 Final
LA 1
Colo 2 Final
Pho 6
Fla 2 Final
Ott 3
Det 1 Final
Nash 0
NYR 2 Final
OT
Tor 3
NJ 4 Final
Mon 2
Phi 1 Final
Pitt 4
Cal 0 Final
Bos 5
Atl 4 Final
Car 0
TB 1 Final
Buf 7
NYI 4 Final
OT
Colu 3