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Sharks 3, Flames 2

By By The Sports Xchange
Published On: Jan 21 2014 12:10:39 AM CST
Updated On: Jan 21 2014 12:10:40 AM CST

SAN JOSE, Calif. -- Left winger Joe Pavelski continued his torrid goal-scoring streak as the San Jose Sharks beat the Calgary Flames 3-2 Monday at SAP Center.

Pavelski scored two goals, including the game-winner, to give him a team-leading 27, while Sharks goalie Antti Niemi stopped 21 shots.

Playing penalty-free hockey, San Jose won its fourth straight to open a four-game homestand and a stretch of 10 games before the Olympic break in which eight will be played at home.

Moved to the top line after an injury to rookie sensation Tomas Hertl 15 games ago, Pavelski has scored 18 goals in his past 20 games to move to No. 3 in the league behind only the Washington Capitals' Alexander Ovechkin and the Anaheim Ducks' Corey Perry.

Pavelski scored his second goal of the game during a second-period power play to give the hosts a 3-2 lead after 40 minutes.

After their wild, brawl-marred game in Vancouver on Saturday, the Flames didn't take their first minor penalty until the midway point Monday, but it was costly.

San Jose right winger Eriah Hayes drew an interference call on Calgary center Matt Stajan. The Sharks converted 26 seconds into the man advantage when Pavelski tipped center Joe Thornton's pass through Calgary goalie Karri Ramo at 14:54.

The game was tied 2-2 after a wide-open, mistake-filled and penalty-free first period that saw each team's goalie struggle.

Calgary broke on top when left winger Jiri Hudler beat Sharks defenseman Brad Stuart for puck possession in the corner, walked out front and used a moved to the backhand to fool Niemi at 4:08 on the Flames' first shot.

The Sharks answered with two goals in 21 seconds just past the midway point of the period.

San Jose defenseman Justin Braun's shot from the left point caromed first off of Calgary defenseman Mark Giordano then off Pavelski on its way past Ramo at 12:22.

On the next shift, Sharks right winger Tommy Wingels circled the Calgary zone, then dished to center Patrick Marleau before getting in back for a shot from the far edge of the right circle that trickled through Ramo at 12:43 for his 10th goal.

Calgary tough guy left winger Kevin Westgarth scored his first of the year at 13:34. He beat Sharks defenseman Matt Irwin to a juicy rebound left by Niemi on a point shot by right winger Brian McGrattan that seemed to fool the San Jose netminder.

Ramo finished with 24 saves.

NOTES: Calgary's C Matt Stajan signed a four-year contract extension for an annual cap hit of $3,125,000. ... Flames coach Bob Hartley was fined $25,000 by the league Monday for his part in Saturday's game at Vancouver in which fights broke out all over the ice two seconds after the opening faceoff. Calgary GM Brian Burke said, "I am perplexed by this fine. I stand behind Bob Hartley completely in this regard." The NHL's Colin Campbell said, "We are holding Mr. Hartley responsible for the actions of Flames right wing Kevin Westgarth, who took the game's opening faceoff and attempted to instigate a premeditated fight with an unwilling opponent." ... The Sharks opened a four-game homestand and a stretch of playing eight of their final 10 pre-Olympic games at home. ... Calgary capped a two-game trip. The Flames begin a five-game homestand Wednesday against the Phoenix Coyotes. ... LW Martin Havlat and RW Mike Brown were San Jose's healthy scratches. D Shane O'Brien, D Derek Smith, C Ben Street and C Mike Cammalleri and ex-Shark LW T.J. Galiardi did not dress for Calgary.