Impenetrable Blackwood: 32 Saves Lead Sharks to Victory Over Kraken

Impenetrable Blackwood: 32 Saves Lead Sharks to Victory Over Kraken

Mackenzie Blackwood delivered a stellar performance with 32 saves, leading the San Jose Sharks to a 2-0 victory over the Seattle Kraken at SAP Center on Tuesday. This marked Blackwood’s first shutout since December 8, 2021, and his ninth in the NHL. San Jose coach David Quinn praised Blackwood, considering him one of the top goalies in the League and commending his athleticism, poise, and teamwork.

In the third period, Marc-Edouard Vlasic and Jan Rutta secured the win for the Sharks (14-32-4). Vlasic, set up by Ty Emberson, scored at 7:27, giving San Jose a 1-0 lead. This marked Vlasic’s third goal in the past five games. Rutta sealed the victory with an empty-net goal in the final 21 seconds.

Despite being outshot 18-8 in the first two periods, the Sharks demonstrated confidence in closing out the game. Joey Daccord made 20 saves for the Kraken (21-19-10), who had won two of their previous three games. Daccord acknowledged Blackwood’s outstanding performance, stating that the Sharks’ goalie “stole a game for them tonight.”

The absence of Tomas Hertl, sidelined with an undisclosed injury, led to William Eklund playing center for the first time at the NHL level. Eklund expressed his adjustment to the new role, emphasizing improved performance as the game progressed.

Key highlights included Vlasic scoring his 13th career game-winning goal, surpassing Dan Boyle for the second most by a defenseman in Sharks franchise history. Vlasic also became the fifth Sharks defenseman aged 36 or older to score in consecutive games. Vince Dunn played his 200th game with the Kraken, becoming the sixth player to reach this milestone with the franchise.

San Jose, with four wins in their last five games, looks forward to facing the Anaheim Ducks on Wednesday. Seattle concluded its games before the NHL All-Star break with a hard-fought match against the Sharks.