Sharks Radio Voice On Pavelski: "The Guy's A Warrior"

Joe Pavelski scored the Sharks' first postseason goal – with his teeth

April 12, 2019 - 9:58 am
Joe Pavelski San Jose Sharks

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Joe Pavelski gave the San Jose Sharks a 1-0 lead over the Vegas Golden Knights in Game 1 of their opening-round series Wednesday – and he did so with his teeth.

That’s right. The puck ricocheted off his mouth and past Marc-Andre Fleury into the goal.


“I knew that would get the approval of the Ferrall show,” Sharks radio voice Dan Rusanowsky said on Ferrall on the Bench, laughing. “The guy’s a warrior. That’s who Joe Pavelski is. He’s willing to do anything for his team. I’ve seen him practice on the ice every day with Brent Burns, those tips, day after day, get into the dirty areas, make sure he’s there to try to get a piece of the puck. It’s the first time I’ve ever seen him deflect it with his face, but who knows? It probably won’t be the last. That’s the kind of gutsy player and great leader this guy is.”

Pavelski left the game but later returned – with a mask. The Sharks won, 5-2.

“The fact that he came back after the protocol, came back with the face protection and actually won a whole of bunch of face-offs and argued with the ref when he got taken out with a penalty – it was just a great tour de force performance by him,” Rusanowsky said, “and it’s exactly what the Sharks need to do to beat this Vegas team.”

They also need strong performances from Burns, who had a goal and an assist in Game 1, and Erik Karlsson, who had two assists. Burns, 34, had 83 points this season, including 67 assists.

“Brent Burns had a Norris Trophy year,” Rusanowsky said. “All the points, the first player at his age to have that many assists in many, many seasons as a defenseman – those guys present a one-two punch. They’re just so talented defensively, and they’re both having really good years when they’re healthy.”

Vegas, meanwhile, will have to fight to get back in the series – and don’t be surprised if they do. This is a team that reached the Stanley Cup final in its inaugural season.

“That top line of William Karlsson, (Jonathan) Marchessault and Reilly Smith are awfully dangerous,” Rusanowsky said. “Now that they’ve added (Max) Pacioretti and (Mark) Stone with (Paul) Stastny, that’s a tremendous second group of forwards that you have to contend with. . . . And then on the other side of things, Shea Theodore is an expert at taking the puck way, one of the better defenseman that has that ability, along with Brent Burns. He’s very skilled and creative with the puck as well.”

Click below to listen to Rusanowsky’s interview in its entirety.