The San Jose Sharks started the 8th game of the 2021-22 season with the most adverse circumstances in recent memory. The Sharks had a total of seven players and the Head Coach, Bob Boughner, placed under COVID protocol after testing positive for the virus days after a game against the Montreal Canadiens. The announcement came less than an hour before the game was scheduled to begin and pushed the opening faceoff against the Winnipeg Jets back 30 minutes.
Captain Logan Couture was also inactive in the contest against Winnipeg but was listed as being day-to-day with an illness unrelated to the news regarding the rest of the team.
The Sharks have called up the following Barracuda players, who played an overtime game on Friday at the Sharks Tank: John Leonard, Nick Merkley, Nicolas Meloche, Ryan Merkley, and Jaycob Megna. Newly acquired coach John MacLean assumed the role of the head coach in Boughner's absence.
The Sharks opened up the scoring 54 seconds into the 2nd period with a wrist shot from Tomas Hertl, netting his 3rd goal of the season assisted by Timo Meier and Alexander Barabanov.
James Reimer, whose fantastic play in the net has Sharks fans believing he is making a case to be named the undisputed starting goaltender, made 34 saves on 35 shots. Reimer was beaten by a backhander from Winnipeg's Kyle Connor with just under 4 minutes remaining in regulation. The Jets' tying goal sent the game into overtime, where Nikolaj Ehlers was called for interference 30 seconds in for practically tackling Brent Burns, who had a breakaway opportunity near the center ice boards. It only took the Sharks 37 seconds into the man advantage to score the game-winning power play goal courtesy of a slap shot from Timo Meier that was redirected by Jets' defenseman Logan Stanley's leg and over the shoulder of goaltender Connor Hellebuyck.
The Sharks win breaks a 3 game losing streak and improves the Sharks record to 5-3. The Sharks will host the Buffalo Sabres on Tuesday, November 2nd at 7:30 PM PST for the ninth game of their NHL season. The Sharks look to improve their record against the Sabres, who have won 27 of the 43 all-time games against Team Teal.