Zuccarellos four points help Wild defeat Sharks


Mats Zuccarello had a goal and three assists for the Minnesota Wild in a 6-2 win against the San Jose Sharks at SAP Center in San Jose on Monday.

Victor Rask had a goal and two assists, and Kirill Kaprizov and Marcus Foligno each had a goal and an assist for the Wild (9-6-0), who have won three straight for the first time this season. Kaapo Kahkonen made 31 saves

“Feels good when the puck finds you,” Zuccarello said. “That’s a good feeling. And it obviously feels good to help contribute to a win. 

“I feel like the whole team is playing the same way, there’s chemistry on all the lines, and three wins in a row, that makes you feel good.”

Video: MIN@SJS: Kaprizov, teammates combine for slick goal

Brent Burns and Logan Couture scored for the Sharks (7-8-2). Martin Jones allowed four goals on 20 shots before being replaced in the second period by Devan Dubnyk, who made 12 saves.

“It was one of those games I thought, obviously, our start was good … but every time we had good momentum shifts, I have to give their goalie credit. He made some big saves at the right times,” San Jose coach Bob Boughner said. “He made some saves and we just couldn’t find the goal we needed at the right time.” 

Burns scored 45 seconds into the game to give the Sharks a 1-0 lead. He got around Wild defenseman Jonas Brodin before cutting across the slot and scoring with a backhand. 

Zuccarello tied it 1-1 at 7:49 with a shot from the right hash marks after waiting for Sharks defenseman Mario Ferraro to slide by, and Kaprizov scored 11 seconds later on a backdoor tap-in to make it 2-1.

“Any momentum builders, you don’t want to give up one (goal), you definitely don’t want to give up two,” Burns said. “Yeah, you don’t want to do that.”

Ian Cole extended the lead to 3-1 at 3:36 of the second period after receiving a no-look pass from Ryan Hartman, who then found Foligno at 10:48 for a 4-1 lead. 

“It’s great when a team can score many different ways,” Cole said. “We had had a little trouble scoring goals early in the season, but we always knew we had the skill to do it. … Right now, we’re starting to figure it out, and we have to keep doing it. 

“The 15th game of the year doesn’t really mean much. We have to do it the rest of the year and through the playoffs.”

Video: MIN@SJS: Hartman sets up Cole’s goal in 2nd

Couture tucked a shot in at the right post after receiving a pass behind the net from Evander Kane to cut it to 4-2 at 11:57 of the second, but Brodin scored a power-play goal to make it 5-2 at 17:25.

“We weren’t good enough offensively,” Couture said. “We had spurts, but I didn’t think there was much sustained pressure. … There’s goals out there for us to score, there’s opportunities. … We have to work a little bit harder to find those goals.” 

Rask scored into an empty net at 16:57 of the third period for the 6-2 final.

“I think the group has confidence for sure,” Minnesota coach Dean Evason said. “Clearly you feel good about yourself when you can score goals and defend as well. We’ve been real good at taking it one game at a time, and clearly we’ve got to continue to do that.” 

NOTES: Zuccarello has seven points (two goals, five assists) in a three-game point streak. … Rask has six points (four goals, two assists) in his past four games. … Jones has allowed at least three goals in 10 of his 12 starts this season. 

Video: Wild roll past Sharks, 6-2

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