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Joe Pavelski plays hero as Sharks go up 2-0 on Predators

Joe Pavelski scored the go-ahead goal with 2:40 left in the third period, as the San Jose Sharks defeated the Nashville Predators 3-2 in Game 2 of the Western Conference semifinals.

What we learned in two games of this series: The Predators can’t close and the Sharks never say die. 

Game 1 saw the Predators carry a 1-0 lead into the third period. They were 26-1-4 in the regular season when leading after two periods. They were 3-0 in the playoffs.

Game 1 result: 5-2 win, as the Sharks scored three goals in a 13:03 stretch to take a 3-1 lead. The Predators cut it to 3-2; the Sharks responded 20 seconds later and cruised to victory.

Game 2 saw the Predators turn the tables and tie the game at 1-1 as Mattias Ekholm scored at 12:56 of the third period. But Pavelski scored at 17:20, Joe Thornton scored into an empty net and the Sharks hung on despite a late goal by Ryan Johansen, his second of the series.

Here’s the Pavelski goal:

Thornton, arguably the best passer of his generation, set it up with that cross-ice pass to Matt Nieto. His high shot handcuffed Pekka Rinne, and allowed Pavelski to tap home the rebound for the lead.

It was his sixth of the playoffs. The Sharks have eight goals in the series and seven have been scored in the third period.

Meanwhile, at the other end, Martin Jones made 37 saves.

Again, the Sharks look poised and impressive in a playoff win. Yes, that’s weird to us, too.

Game 3 is Tuesday in Nashville.

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Greg Wyshynski is a writer for Yahoo Sports. Contact him at puckdaddyblog@yahoo.com or find him on Twitter. His book, TAKE YOUR EYE OFF THE PUCK, is available on Amazon and wherever books are sold.

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