SAN JOSE, Calif. - Patrick Marleau scored a pair of goals, leading the Sharks to a 5-2 victory over the Ottawa Senators on Tuesday night.
With 19 goals this season, Marleau took over the team lead from former Senators forward Dany Heatley, who assisted on both markers. Jamie McGinn, Ryane Clowe and Manny Malhotra also scored for San Jose, while Joe Thornton had two assists to up his league-leading total to 32. Backup goalie Thomas Greiss made 25 saves.
While Sharks fans cheered the victory, they also made sure to honour two fan favorites who were dealt to Ottawa for Heatley in September.
Milan Michalek was cheered after scoring both goals for the Senators, while Jonathan Cheechoo got a warm ovation when his picture was shown on the video board early in the first period. And he heard the train whistles when he touched the puck that were traditional when he played here.
“It was pretty cool,” Cheechoo said. “I played a lot of games in this rink, so it was neat. Yeah, you hear the fans. They were always supportive. The fans were always great to me, so coming back and playing here again so soon was great.”
Heatley came out energized against his former team, putting six shots on goal in the first period and setting up the first goal of the game. He made a good effort to keep the puck in at the blue line, getting it to Thornton, who fed Marleau for the opening score.
In the second period, Heatley drew a second assist when his backhand shot was deflected onto the stick of Marleau, who beat Brian Elliott to make it 3-1 just four seconds after Matt Carkner returned to the ice after serving a delay of game penalty.
Michalek also came out with a little extra pep in his step, scoring on a backhander in the first period and converting with a one-timer off a feed from Daniel Alfredsson on the power play in the second to cut San Jose's lead to 4-2. That was just the third power-play goal allowed in 11 home games this season by the Sharks.
“I would have exchanged the two goals for two points. That would have been better,” Michalek said. “It was a little weird during warmups, but then I was able to just play.”
NOTES: Elliott made 28 saves in his fourth straight start since Pascal Leclaire (fractured cheekbone) went on the injured list ... Half of the 24 shots in the first period were taken by the three players from the deal, with Heatley having six, Michalek four and Cheechoo two ... Senators D Anton Volchenkov returned to the ice for the first time since dislocating his right elbow on Oct. 28 ... Marleau played in his 900th career game ... The Senators' five-game road trip continues Thursday night in Los Angeles against the Kings (10:30 p.m., TSN, Team 1200).