Stanley Cup Final Notes: San Jose Sharks forward Tomas Hertl to miss Game 3 with injury


SAN JOSE, California -- The San Jose Sharks will be without Czech forward Tomas Hertl for Game 3 of the Stanley Cup Final on Saturday.

Coach Peter DeBoer said Hertl has a lower-body injury.

Dainius Zubrus of Lithuania will return to the lineup for San Jose with Melker Karlsson of Sweden likely moving up to the wing on the top line with Joe Thornton and Joe Pavelski.

Hertl has one of San Jose's three goals in the finals against the Pittsburg Penguins. His absence will make coming back from a 2-0 series deficit more difficult. DeBoer said Hertl has arguably been the Sharks' best player during the first two games.

Hertl has six goals and five assists in 20 playoff games this season.

Penguins-Sharks Stanley Cup Final Game 3 preview
SAN JOSE, Calif. -- The San Jose Sharks can take at least one positive out of losing the first two games of the Stanley Cup Final in Pittsburgh.

Despite being severely outplayed for almost the entire two games, the Sharks still managed to lose by only one goal with the game-winner coming in the final three minutes of Game 1 and in overtime in Game 2.

If the Sharks can somehow neutralize Pittsburgh's decided edge in speed and get back to playing the style of play that got them this far for the first time ever they might be able to get back into the series when it shifts to San Jose for Game 3 on Saturday night.

"In the playoffs, things are magnified so much," Sharks defenseman Paul Martin said Friday. "You lose a game and it's a close game you think about a big opportunity that you let slide away. But when you go over the film and watch the games, it's right there for us. We got better from Game 1. Game 2 was a lot better. We haven't played our best hockey yet."

The odds facing the Sharks are daunting. Of the 49 teams that have taken a 2-0 lead since the final went to the best-of-seven format in 1939, 44 have won the Cup. Teams winning the first two games at home have won 33 of 36 series (see full preview).

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