Coming off a decisive win against the Washington Capitals, the Pacific division leading San Jose Sharks welcomed the Nashville Predators into the Shark Tank. While the Sharks have been celebrating a run of recent success, the Predators entered Saturday’s game desperate to end a four-game losing streak. The tale of the tape; two playoff bound juggernauts battling on the field of desperation versus confidence.

The San Jose Sharks are riding a current of four out of the last five wins and earning points in seven of their last ten games. Nashville currently sits in seventh place overall in the Pacific division and also have points in eight of the last ten games.

However, their recent four-game skid left the team teetering on the edge of a long summer vacation.

Sharks storm the ice with calm determination

Early in the first period, the San Jose Sharks looked as if they would continue where they left off in their 4-2 against Washington on Thursday. At 6:18 in the first Paul Martin buried a booming shot off of a direct pass from Joe Thornton’s face off win.

That was as good as the game got for super-heated Sharks, as the visiting Predators doused their flames. Six minutes after Joe Thornton’s 1,002nd career assist, Ryan Johansen snuck a laser beam past San Jose goaltender Martin Jones. The Sharks failed to clear the puck from the offensive zone, which led to a perfect pass from Roman Josi to an anxiously willing Johansen.

Nashville rakes the reigns

Predators’ goalie Juuse Saros was the Sharks offense for the final two and a half periods of this afternoon's game. Sarous finished the night with twenty-five saves. The Nashville defense played superbly and held the Sharks offense to only twenty-six shots, four fewer than their thirty shots per game average.

Half-way through the 2nd period, James Neal gave the Predators a lead after slam-dunking a pass from behind the Shark net. The play started as a rapid breakout from the Predator zone. Quick passes along the right side boards put San Jose on their heels and the perfect positioning of Johansen allowed a quick dunk that even Michael Jordon would have been proud of.

The Predators never gave control back to the Sharks. Nashville’s dominance was solidified when, at 18:58 of the third, Viktor Arvidsson scored an empty net power play goal. This goal was a textbook example of adding insult to injury. Nashville choked the Shark's power and momentum, snapped their losing streak, and left the ever-hostile in humbled silence.

Hopefully, San Jose is able to shake off this tough loss quickly. On Sunday, March 12 San Jose takes on the Dallas Stars at 7 pm PST. The Stars are hoping to build up some big points late in the season, and utilize their recent trade maneuvers to instill new energy.

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