Niemi leads Sharks past Blackhawks, 1-0

Associated Press  |  Last updated November 24, 2011
Antti Niemi made 34 saves against his former team for his first shutout of the season and Jason Demers broke a scoreless tie late in the second period with his first goal to lead the San Jose Sharks to a 1-0 victory over the Chicago Blackhawks on Wednesday night. Niemi was tested often as San Jose was sluggish at the start and also helped kill off a power play late in the third period with a toe save against Jonathan Toews to give the Sharks their fourth straight win and sixth in the past seven games. Niemi, who helped Chicago knock out San Jose on the way to winning the Stanley Cup in 2010, got the best of his former team in his 14th career shutout. He improved to 4-1 and has allowed only 10 goals in five games against the Blackhawks since signing with the Sharks before last season. The Blackhawks have lost three straight games on a two-week road trip as the circus has taken over the United Center. After starting the annual trek with a win in Vancouver, Chicago has been outscored 15-4 in losses to Calgary, Edmonton and San Jose. Even a two-day respite in Las Vegas after a 9-2 loss in Edmonton on Saturday night was unable to shake the funk. The Sharks got off to a good start on a two-game homestand against the teams that eliminated them in the Western Conference finals the past two seasons. San Jose hosts Vancouver on Saturday night in the first meeting between the teams since the Canucks won the conference final in five games last spring. Despite being thoroughly outplayed for the first two periods, the Sharks had a 1-0 lead going into the third thanks to stellar play from Niemi and a fortuitous bounce on a power play. Dave Bolland got sent off for tripping Brent Burns late in the second period and San Jose took just 4 seconds to turn that into the game's only goal. Logan Couture beat Toews on the faceoff and the puck went back to Demers at the point. His shot hit Toews' stick and bounced past Corey Crawford for San Jose's only goal on 21 shots. The Blackhawks had a 23-11 shot advantage after two periods but were unable to convert on a number of good chances. Niemi made a good save against Steve Montador on a power play in the second period after Dan Boyle was sent off for his third minor penalty of the game. Bolland then had a chance on the rebound but missed an open net. Niemi made up for some uncharacteristic mistakes by his defense to keep his former team off the scoreboard in the first period. Marian Hossa shot high after a giveaway by Burns in his own zone. Then with Boyle in the box for a tripping penalty, Niemi made a nice pad save to rob Toews. Boyle then had a disastrous shift that didn't end up hurting the Sharks. First, he fell down leading to a breakaway by Bryan Bickell that Niemi stopped. Chicago got a 2-on-1 break after a turnover by Boyle, but Niemi knocked away a deflected pass from Hossa. Boyle was called for boarding at the end of that play, but the Sharks killed off the power play. Notes: The Sharks improved to 6-1 when being outshot in games. ... Blackhawks D Brent Seabrook missed his fourth straight game with a lower-body injury. F Michael Frolik returned after missing two games with an injured left shoulder. ... The Sharks improved to 7-0-0 when scoring the first goal of the game.
GET THE YARDBARKER APP:
Ios_download En_app_rgb_wo_45
MORE FROM YARDBARKER

Several NBA executives have concerns about Lonzo Ball’s father

Kim Mulkey gives awful post-game speech about Baylor scandal

Bill Walton goes shirtless during ESPN broadcast to the dismay of one woman

Sanu: Halftime show played role in Super Bowl collapse

James Dolan is among potential group of investors of new arena for New York Islanders

LIKE WHAT YOU SEE?
GET THE DAILY NEWSLETTER:

Report: Rams, Clippers discussing NBA venue in Inglewood

Terrence Jones reportedly interested in joining Celtics

LeBron reverses course, says he ‘always felt good’ about Cavs

Report: Ole Miss tried to implicate Mississippi State in football scandal

Jamaal Charles could be on the roster bubble

Jimmy Butler on state of Bulls: ‘I just want to win at all costs’

Top 10 shortstops in baseball for 2017

The most dangerous NBA teams flying under the radar

Eat, Drink, Watch: Your award-worthy weekend planning guide

Grading the NBA trade deadline on the Vince Carter scale

Box Score 2/24: A night of NBA disrespect

As NHL trade deadline nears, seven teams who could be dealing

The 'Pete Rose instead of Kareem? Surely, you can't be serious' quiz

Streaming sports docuseries you don't want to miss

Teams that can prevent a Cavs-Warriors NBA Finals three-peat

The NFL off-season is a passer’s fancy

The Aesthetic: Pushing the boundaries of the three-pointer

NBA coaches who should be fired soon

NHL News
Delivered to your inbox
You'll also receive Yardbarker's daily Top 10, featuring the best sports stories from around the web. Customize your newsletter to get articles on your favorite sports and teams. And the best part? It's free!

By clicking "Sign Me Up", you have read and agreed to the Fox Sports Digital Privacy Policy and Terms of Use. You can opt out at any time. For more information, please see our Privacy Policy.
the YARDBARKER app
Get it now!
Ios_download En_app_rgb_wo_45

Top 10 shortstops in baseball for 2017

The most dangerous NBA teams flying under the radar

Eat, Drink, Watch: Your award-worthy weekend planning guide

Grading the NBA trade deadline on the Vince Carter scale

Streaming sports docuseries you don't want to miss

As NHL trade deadline nears, seven teams who could be dealing

The 'Pete Rose instead of Kareem? Surely, you can't be serious' quiz

Teams that can prevent a Cavs-Warriors NBA Finals three-peat

The NFL off-season is a passer’s fancy

QUIZ: Name every MLB pitcher who has recorded 10 or more shutouts in a single season

Today's Best Stuff
For Publishers
Company Info
Help
Follow Yardbarker