Flyers-Sharks Preview

The Associated Press

The San Jose Sharks are still looking for more offense, but at least they have a victory to build on in their next game Monday night.

With their three-game slide in the past, the Sharks hope to continue their mastery of a visiting Philadelphia Flyers club that's looking for a second straight win over another offensively challenged California team.

San Jose (35-15-6) managed one goal during its three-game skid which ended with a 2-1 shootout home win over Chicago on Saturday. Joe Pavelski scored his team-leading 29th goal and added a goal in the tiebreaker, during which the Sharks converted all three chances.

"It always feels good to win, especially when you lose a few in a row," Pavelski told the NHL's official website. "When we play our game, we know what we want to accomplish in here."

The Sharks would certainly like to accomplish more offensively after recording two non-shootout goals in four games and going 0 for 16 on the power play in the last six. However, San Jose has allowed two or fewer goals nine times while winning eight of 12.

"The message (Saturday) morning was 'Let's control what we can control,'" coach Todd McLellan said. "And a lot of that is commitment to defending the right way, being in the right position at the right time, blocking shots, and doing those types of things."

Antti Niemi also has helped while winning three straight as part of his 13-1-1 home stretch. He's posted a 1.27 goals-against average in his last seven there.

Niemi made 26 saves as San Jose extended its winning streak over Philadelphia (27-23-6) to nine with a 1-0 home victory Feb. 28, 2012.

The Sharks are 11-0-0 with two ties against the Flyers since a 4-3 loss at Philadelphia on Dec. 21, 2000. San Jose is 6-0-0 with a tie at home in the series since falling 3-1 on Nov. 5, 1999.

However, the Flyers are coming off a 2-0 victory over Los Angeles on Saturday, with Steve Mason making 35 saves for his second shutout in three games.

Mason, who stopped 33 shots in a 5-0 home win over Detroit on Tuesday, rebounded after giving up four goals on 27 shots in a 5-3 loss at Anaheim on Thursday. He's won five of seven on the road, but is 1-4-0 with a 3.83 GAA at San Jose.

Wayne Simmonds scored his 100th goal and added an assist Saturday for the Flyers, who will try to win two in a row for the first time since a three-game run Jan. 4-8.

"I like the battle," coach Craig Berube told the Flyers' official website. "I like the competitiveness of the team right now."

Claude Giroux has four goals and four assists in six games for the Flyers, who have scored a power-play goal in six straight and converted 25.0 percent (13 of 52) of their chances in the last 15 contests.

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