Joe Thornton’s milestone goal in the third period was the winner as the San Jose Sharks blew a three-goal lead but recovered to claim a wild 5-4 victory over the Nashville Predators in NHL action Tuesday night.
Thornton finished a rush set up by Marcus Sorensen at 13:18 of the final frame to the delight of the home crowd to collect his 400th career goal. He’s only the 11th player in NHL history to net both 400 goals and 1,000 assists.
Joe Pavelski scored twice and Sorensen had a three-point game, while Sharks goalie Martin Jones made 30 saves in the roller-coaster-ride win that came after they claimed a 3-0 first-period lead only to watch it evaporate.
Sorensen opened the scoring at 5:09 when he stole the puck at the right face-off dot, held off a pair of defenders while driving across the net and slid home the puck.
Pavelski doubled the lead on the power play at 7:05 by deflecting Erik Karlsson’s point shot. Karlsson became the 13th defenseman in NHL history to collect 400 career assists.
Then Antti Suomela scored at 16:51 to make it 3-0 for San Jose, taking advantage of a lucky bounce that saw the puck come to him in the slot.
The Predators stormed back and took the lead. Craig Smith started the comeback at 4:43 of the second period when he finished a tap-in tally set up by Ryan Johansen’s slick cross-crease pass, then Filip Forsberg potted his first of the night 40 seconds later with a breakaway goal.
After Forsberg collected his second of the night to tie the game at 17:52 of the middle frame by shooting while on a two-on-one rush, Rocco Grimaldi put the Predators ahead at 2:43 of the third period with a breakaway marker of his own.
That just set the stage for San Jose’s comeback.
Pavelski notched his second of the game just 13 seconds before Thornton’s winner, wiring a glove-side shot off the rush.
Juuse Saros made 32 saves for the league-leading Predators, who lost a road game in regulation for the first time this season.
—Field Level Media