Two third period goals from Dustin Byfuglien (on the powerplay) and Evander Kane allowed the Thrashers to defeat the San Jose Sharks 4-2 on the Sharks’ opening night. The Sharks, who started well but who looked obviously jet lagged from their Sweden trip by the third period, allowed the Thrashers to get progressively better. They began the game with only four shots on goal after the first period, then improved to nine and finally fifteen, for a total of twenty eight. The Sharks, though, began with twelve shots on goal, worked up to eighteen the second period, and finished with just nine in the third.
The Thrashers scored four unanswered goals for their first franchise win in San Jose, spoiling the Sharks’ opening night. Perhaps San Jose should have started Antero Niittymaki after all.
Atlanta scored two even strength goals, a power play goal, and a short handed goal tonight. The PP was one for three, while the penalty kill was three for four. Goaltender Chris Mason only allowed two goals on thirty nine shots, bringing the SOG that he has faced so far this season up to 182 in only five games. The Thrashers rank 26th in the league in shots against, allowing an average of 36.4 a game.
Chris Mason’s save percentage is up to .917, and his GAA is down to 3.00 over his first five starts of the season. He is now 3-2.