"We are getting great goaltending with Nabby," Sharks coach Ron Wilson said. "He made some big saves. He was there all night and made all the saves that mattered."
Mike Grier also scored and Nabokov, who started his franchise-best 25th game in succession, stopped 25 shots for his second shutout as the Sharks earned back-to-back home victories for the first time this season. They beat the Coyotes 4-1 at the Shark Tank on Saturday night.
"The points are more important right now," Nabokov said. "All those other things are good when I'm 50 and it will be nice to remember."
Mikael Tellqvist stopped an early penalty shot but had trouble the rest of way. His three-game winning streak was snapped and Phoenix went on its first road losing skid this season.
"Nabokov's pretty strong, so from an individual point of view if we don't play at our best as a team, it's tough because they've got a lot of good players," Coyotes coach Wayne Gretzky said. "When the game got physical, their big players rose to the occasion and scored some big goals for them and that was the difference in the hockey game."
The Coyotes will play host to the Sharks on Thursday.
"Now we go on the road and we need to keep our confidence," Thornton said. "We have to keep fighting for pucks and shots."
"These are two competitive teams and both of us were playing hard," Sharks center Torrey Mitchell said. "When it gets like that, things can get chippy."
Joe Pavelski was chopped to the ice on a breakaway midway through the first period and was awarded his first NHL penalty shot. Tellqvist stopped the attempt down low.
"It's all a learning process and our emotions got a little bit high," Gretzky said. "They're one of the better teams in the Western Conference, they've got a lot of depth and it makes you grow up in a real hurry, so it makes us a better team."
The Sharks took a 1-0 lead when Grier scored a short-handed goal with 1:36 left in the opening frame. Grier dug the puck out of the corner and flipped it to Mitchell, who skated down the ice and drew a defender to him before passing back to Grier.
Thornton followed a rebound and, with Tellqvist on the ice, made it 2-0 with 1:09 left in the second period.
Setoguchi took advantage of a bad pass from Keith Ballard in front of the net for an easy short-handed goal 4:06 into the third period. He scored again with 4:48 remaining.
"I was pressuring the guy in front of the net and he sort of bobbled it," Setoguchi said. "I took it from him and just shot it. We put it together, and if we do that every night for 60 minutes it's dangerous how effective we can be."
Thornton closed the scoring with a power-play goal at 16:33.
"When they're playing well it's tough to play the same team three times when they're beating you," Doan said. "But you definitely want to get back on that horse and try again."
- Thornton has four goals and six assists in nine games.
- The last time the Coyotes franchise played three consecutive games against the same opponent was when the Winnipeg Jets faced Vancouver for a trio of games in March 1983.
- Tampa resident Steve Williamson was in attendance as part of his 30 games in 30 days trip, receiving a few gifts from the Sharks and appearing on local radio.
- Sharks C Jeremy Roenick was chosen as the NHL's third star of last week.
- The Coyotes have yet to win when trailing after any period.