CHICAGO Is it March yet?
After a 7-0-0 record in January, the Sharks continued their February flop, dropping a 4-1 decision Friday to the Chicago Blackhawks that left San Jose 0-4-3 for a month that, thankfully, has only 28 days.
The score reflected each team's play, but what may have hurt even more is the fact the Blackhawks got the type of goals the Sharks desperately could use a weird bounce here, a batted puck there and that helped Chicago remain the NHL's only team without a regulation loss at 11-0-3.
The loss was San Jose goalie Antti Niemi's second in 11 days to his former team and dropped his overall record against the Blackhawks to 5-4-1. Chicago backup Ray Emery upped his record this season to 4-0-0.
Dave Bolland and Marcus Kruger staked Chicago to a 2-0 lead that Sharks forward Tim Kennedy cut in half with his first goal since being called up Tuesday from Worcester. But Andrew Shaw got that back for the Blackhawks. Niklas Hjalmarsson added one in the third period on a 62-foot blast from the left point, and it was game over.
Bolland scored at 19:16 of the first period, and there was nothing odd about it as he fired the puck at Niemi, who lost track of the rebound. Bolland didn't, and it was 1-0.
Kruger, however, was simply trying to dump the puck into the Sharks' zone when it took a weird hop over Niemi's glove, bounced off the post and landed in the crease, an easy tap-in at 3:05 of the second period.
Also in the second, Shaw batted the puck out of the air and into the net after a scramble in front of Niemi at 14:40.
Ducks 5, Red Wings 2 in Detroit Andrew Cogliano scored two of Anaheim's three goals in the third period, sending the Ducks to their third straight win and the seventh in eight games.
Viktor Fasth made 26 saves to become the first goalie in seven years to win his first seven career starts.
Sabres 4, Bruins 2 in Buffalo, N.Y. Christian Ehrhoff scored the winner with 10:58 left, and Buffalo rallied for three goals in the third period for the victory.
Ehrhoff fired a wrister from the slot over goalie Anton Khudobin.
Cody Hodgson added an insurance goal less than three minutes later when he tipped in a pass from Tyler Myers.