His arms thrust high … and just like that, the weight seemed to lift off the shoulders of a jubilant
Nothing quite like an overtime goal against the league's best team to do the trick. The
Kopitar, who has scored three game-winners in overtime in his career, also set up the tying goal, by
Beyond the basics is another stunning statistic: The Kings have not lost when the game has extended beyond regulation. They've won four times in shootouts and twice in overtime.
This was a true measuring stick-type game. Fourteen games into a lengthy
Presenting the Sharks: not quite this season's
The Kings were attempting to make it two losses in regulation in 13 games but stumbled early, regained their footing and finally equalized in the third period when Williams scored on the power play to make it 3-3.
"I think it's no surprise it's going to be a great game like that," Stoll said in a TV interview after the game. "You could tell we were pushing and pushing.... Great shot. It was good to see. Kopi can find those holes. We found a way to get a win."
Stoll also has started to find his scoring touch.
"It feels good to contribute and chip in.… We're not going to win with one or two lines," he said.
San Jose center
This was the first meeting between the teams since their electric playoff series in the
The Sharks went off to the lake, retooled and refreshed and have pretty much run the table in October, losing only once in regulation, at Boston on Oct. 24.
Somehow, it was fitting that Williams was the one to extend the game. After all, he was the playoff hero of Game 7, scoring twice in that one to send the Kings to the conference final.
That was only one of the few similarities to Game 7.
The Sharks and Kings had their share of October-type miscues. San Jose took two bench minors, including the one leading to the Williams goal.
And the Kings committed three offensive-zone penalties, and the last could have been costly. They had just tied the game when left wing
These were the moments designed to create sleepless nights for coaches. Or, at the very least, sure to create many future video sessions for attentive players.