Thornton returns to lineup for Sharks in Game 3 vs. Oilers

Edmonton Oilers goalie Cam Talbot (33) lays out to stop a shot next to San Jose Sharks center Tomas Hertl, top, and Oilers' Mark Letestu (55) during the second period in Game 3 of a first-round NHL hockey playoff series.

Edmonton had a chance here to win a short series. And with that, he backs up the opposition and makes them look off balance. San Jose had a 13-6 advantage in shots.

"Our power play in our second game mimicked our 5-on-5 play: we weren't hungry enough (and) we got outworked in a lot of areas".

It's the most lopsided playoff loss in the history of the Edmonton Oilers.

They are not all the way there yet, but the strides that Todd McLellan's gang have made in the last week alone give plenty of cause for hope that they can get there sooner rather than later. There have been only eight goals between the two teams in the first three games of the series. Joe Pavelski bounced a deflected puck past Cam Talbot, opening the floodgates in drought-stricken California and bringing a sellout crowd of towel-waving maniacs to their feet.

Talbot acknowledged that back-to-back shutouts in the playoffs felt great.

The Oilers were helped by the fact San Jose continued to struggle on the power play, even with Thornton back in the lineup, going 0 for 2 and falling to 1 for 14 in the series.

One of those Oilers fans is Kyla Lane, who recently underwent knee surgery and realized she wouldn't be able to fly to San Jose.

"It was kind of like a goosebumps moment where you're just like, 'Oh my God, ' like this is intense ... we're in the playoffs, like this is actually happening". Draisaitl's was the line that made the difference in this tense affair, creating the turnover with the forecheck that led to Zack Kassian's second game-winner of the series in the third period.

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"It was not a demotion by any means for Leon, in fact I whispered in his ear that it was a promotion", McLellan told reporters. "Joe Thornton was off by 10:15 today", Rishaug said. "We leave Edmonton with a split, which is what we wanted coming in here, and now we've got to go home and play really well at home".

Milan Lucic was pumped in the penalty box.

It's now a best-of-three, and if there's any such thing as momentum in a playoff series, it's all in the Sharks' corner.

After enduring multiple long stretches without recording a shot on goal in games two and three the Sharks clearly game planned to avoid repeating this particular mistake.

Connor McDavid was at the center of Edmonton's two best second-period chances.

Without production from McDavid, the Oilers are in trouble because they don't have the depth to keep up with the Sharks four lines if Thornton and Couture return to form. And the seven goals total tied a club record set twice previously - once at home (April 20, 2014) against Los Angeles and once on the road (April 30, 1999) at Colorado.

After not scoring in either of the last two games, it only took the Sharks 15 seconds to dent the twine in this one.

Evgeni Malkin scored his first goal of the post-season, and Patric Hornqvist pushed in an empty-net goal.

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