The defending Western Conference champion San Jose Sharks were eliminated by the Edmonton Oilers Saturday night, with a 3-1 Game Six loss wrapping up that first-round series, but they came very close to a different ending. The Sharks trailed 2-0 heading into the final period, but they got one goal, and then they came exceptionally close to a second with just under four minutes left. So close, in fact, that NBCSN announcer Brendan Burke initially called the backhand shot from Joe Pavelski a goal:
“Pavelski scores! No!” Credit to Burke for quickly recovering here and recognizing what happened (“They say it hit the crossbar!”). And when you look at the later replay, it’s really easy to understand why he thought this was a goal.
That’s a great backhand by Pavelski, and he definitely gets it over Oilers’ goaltender Cam Talbot. However, it clanks off the crossbar and then off the inside of the far post, and somehow manages to stay out. This was awfully close, though, and it’s easy to understand why Burke initially thought it was in. If it had been, we might have had a very different finish. But the puck stayed out, the Oilers eventually got a last-second empty-net goal, and the Sharks went home.