Bay Area

Martin Jones flourishing as number one

San Jose Sharks goaltender Martin Jones entered Saturday night’s game at Nashville against the Predators on a hot streak, having won eight of his last ten starts, most recently stopping 26 of 27 shots in a 3-1 victory over the St. Louis Blues earlier in the week. In his first year as a full time starter, Jones is producing the way the Sharks envisioned when they traded from him over the summer.

Like most every goaltender, Jones has had a couple of iffy outings, but his play over the course of the season has made back-up net minder Alex Stalock an almost forgotten man in San Jose. Over his past ten games, Jones has been exceptional, posting a 1.97 goals against average and .929 save percentage. For the season, Jones has a 24-14-3 record, with a 2.37 GAA and a .915 SV percentage.

Buried behind star Jonathan Quick at Los Angeles, Jones became a hot commodity with his sparkling spot duty covering for a couple of Quick’s injuries. Over the summer, Quick was dealt from the Kings to the Boston Bruins, who then traded him a couple of days later to the Sharks for a first round draft pick in the 2016 NHL Entry Draft and prospect Sean Kuraly.

Jones, like the rest of the Sharks, has excelled on the road, where the club is 17-7-2 while in the midst of this current road trip. Because of that road success and the current hot streak, the Sharks currently sit in second place in the Pacific Division with 58 points, seven behind the leading Kings, but just a single point ahead of the surging Anaheim Ducks and only four points from being out of the playoff picture entirely.

With Logan Couture’s return a month ago, the Sharks are finally healthy up front. If they can stay healthy, particularly along a very thing blue line, and if Jones can continue to hold his end of the bargain between the pipes, the Sharks are positioned to make a run toward playoff contention.

After last year’s disappointing season, that’s all Sharks fans want – meaningful games down the stretch and a playoff berth at stake.

Photo Credit:  Scott Rovak/Getty Images

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Ray Hartjen

A Public Relations pro by day, by night @RayHartjen follows parallel - yet somehow still often conflicting - paths searching for hair metal guitar legend status, a career as a journeyman 4th line center in the NHL, and the treasured laminates to be a hanger-on in the circus that is Formula 1.


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