Hockey Night In Canada Stanley Cup Playoffs 2011

Sharks look to get physical and deep

Categories: San Jose Sharks, VAN vs. SJS, Vancouver Canucks

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San Jose defenceman Dan Boyle, seen battling Vancouver forward Mason Raymond in Game 1, believes if the Sharks keep playing the body that they will eventually see dividends. (Harry How/Getty Images) San Jose defenceman Dan Boyle, seen battling Vancouver forward Mason Raymond in Game 1, believes if the Sharks keep playing the body that they will eventually see dividends. (Harry How/Getty Images)

The San Jose Sharks say they need to play a more physical game on Wednesday night if they're going to even up their series with the Canucks at one game each.

And the key to that may be puck placement.

"We didn't give ourselves an opportunity to forecheck," coach Todd McLellan said of his team's play in the 3-2 loss that opened the Western Conference finals.

"They're a very mobile group on the back end," he continued. "They have the ability to break out and you certainly make it a lot easier on them when the retrievals are in spots where they can get to them efficiently, get their eyes up and get going. In turn, that makes it tough on us because we expend a lot of energy for nothing."

Dan Boyle said that more physical play may not pay off that night, but as the series goes on, those hits do have a cumulative impact.

Demers not sighted

McLellan wasn't ready to tip his hand as far as defenceman Jason Demers' return to the lineup, but it's pretty evident the 22-year-old Quebec native with an offensive upside will miss his second consecutive game with "bumps and bruises."

Demers didn't skate this morning and that makes it likely that veteran Kent  Huskins will take his place once again. Huskins had been out since Feb. 16 with an upper body injury of his own before playing 12:58 in Sunday night's game.

How tough was it to jump into the conference finals after not playing for three months?

"It helps having been there before and knowing what to expect and the kind of intensity you have to gear yourself up for and bring to the table.

"But as far as conditioning, I've done a lot of work with the coaches to get myself as physically ready as I could for this situation. Then it's just little things like reading the play at that speed. It just takes a couple shifts to get back into things."

Lines appeared unchanged:

Patrick Marleau-Joe Thornton-Devin Setoguchi

Ryane Clowe-Logan Couture-Dany Heatley

Torrey Mitchell-Joe Pavelski-Kyle Wellwood

Ben Eager-Scott Nichol-Jamal Mayers


Douglas Murray-Dan Boyle

Niclas Wallin-Ian White

Marc-Edouard Vlasic-Kent Huskins