New Jersey at San Jose

Thornton collects hat trick as Sharks bite on Devils


SAN JOSE, Calif. -- The top line of Joe Thornton, Patrick Marleau and Dany Heatley didn't get the start for the San Jose Sharks, but they sure did finish.

Thornton had his fourth career hat trick and added two assists in San Jose's 5-2 victory over slumping New Jersey on Wednesday night. Marleau and Heatley each had a goal and three assists, giving the trio 13 points.

"It seemed like every time I stepped on the ice we were scoring," said Thornton, who has five goals and seven assists in eight games this season.

Coming off a 4-0 loss Sunday night in Calgary, the Sharks (4-3-1) won for the third time in four games and for the first time this season in four home games.

Sharks coach Todd McLellan said he was sending a subtle message to his No. 1 line by not having it on the ice to start the game.

"I think they read the writing between the lines and responded," McLellan said. "They're a team of game-breakers who play desperate. That was something we were waiting for from that line. It was a really good display of leadership."

David Clarkson and Andy Greene scored for the Devils. New Jersey has lost three straight and five of its last six to drop to 2-7-1 under first-year coach John MacLean.

"We started out good, getting the puck deep, then four turnovers and they get their first goal off it," MacLean said. "It can be done. We can get the puck in deep then go to work on it. I mean, that's what San Jose did. That's what their big line did all night. They got the pucks down low then got the goals off it."

Thornton opened the scoring midway through the first period. Marleau bounced a pass off the boards near center ice to Heatley, who took the carom and found Thornton streaking down the center of the ice. Thornton turned and fired from inside the left circle, beating goalie Martin Brodeur.

The trio struck again 1:19 later. While Thornton and Heatley battled with two defenders along the boards behind the net, Marleau slipped in between the four players and grabbed the loose puck and turned for a wraparound goal that beat Brodeur on the right side.

Thornton made it 3-0 with 1:01 left in the period, tapping the puck past Brodeur from close range.

"Joe's making a conscious effort to go to the net," Marleau said. "Our line did get off a lot of shots. We were having a lot of fun out there, and this is something we can definitely build off."

After Clarkson scored for New Jersey early in the second, Thornton completed the hat trick on a power play with 3:05 left in the period. Heatley sent the puck into the boards to the far left of the net, Brodeur came out to get it, but the puck caromed past him, and Thornton scored into the empty net.

Thornton set up Heatley in front of the net for San Jose's final goal at 6:47 of the third.

Greene scored on a power play with 5:38 remaining for New Jersey, which has been outscored 14-4 during its three-game losing streak.


  • Among NHL players 31 or younger at the start of the season, Thornton has the most points with 943. He also has an NHL-high 696 points since the 2002-2003 season.
  • Sharks forward Joe Pavelski's wife, Sarah, gave birth to their first child, Nathan, on Tuesday night.
  • Sharks wing Ryane Clowe and New Jersey defenseman Matthew Corrente had a lengthy fight late in second period.
Copyright 2017 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.
Joe Thornton (19) gets congratulations from teammates after completing his fourth career three-goal game. (AP)
Joe Thornton (19) gets congratulations from teammates after completing his fourth career three-goal game. (AP)
New Jersey (2-7-1)0112
San Jose  (4-3-1) «3115
Three Stars
J. Thornton

Goals: 3
Assist(s): 2
D. Heatley

Goals: 1
Assist(s): 3
P. Marleau

Goals: 1
Assist(s): 3

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Scoring Summary
09:57 - Joe Thornton (3), Wrist Shot. Assist: Heatley, Marleau
11:16 - Patrick Marleau (3), Wrap Shot. Assist: Thornton, Heatley
18:59 - Joe Thornton (4), Wrist Shot. Assist: Marleau, Demers
03:06 - David Clarkson (1), Wrist Shot. Assist: Corrente, Tallinder
16:55Power Play - Joe Thornton (5), Wrist Shot. Assist: Heatley
06:47 - Dany Heatley (3), Tip-In. Assist: Thornton, Marleau
14:22Power Play - Andy Greene (1), Wrist Shot. Assist: Zubrus, Parise
Penalty Summary
05:40Nichol, 2 min, Slashing
10:04Mair, 5 min, Fighting
10:04Mayers, 5 min, Fighting
13:03Wallin, 2 min, Interference
15:39Tallinder, 2 min, Hooking
07:10Mayers, 2 min, Hooking
08:29Josefson, 2 min, Bench - Too Many Men on the Ice
15:56Corrente, 2 min, Interference
19:29Corrente, 5 min, Fighting
19:29Clowe, 5 min, Fighting
09:05Clowe, 2 min, Hooking
13:54Heatley, 2 min, Holding
15:22Murray, 2 min, High-Sticking
15:22Corrente, 2 min, Unsportsmanlike Conduct
15:22Corrente, 10 min, Misconduct
15:22Corrente, 10 min, Game Misconduct
Shots On Goal
Martin Brodeur59:59345
Antero Niittymaki60:00272
Game Information
Attendance - 17562
Referees - Tom Kowal, Kevin Pollock
Linesmen - Shane Heyer, Jay Sharrers
Other Games
Atl 6 Final
Wash 3 Final
Car 0
NYI 3 Final
Mon 5
Pitt 3 Final
TB 5
LA 1 Final
Chi 3