SAN JOSE, Calif. (AP) - Evgeni Nabokov made 20 saves in his seventh shutout and then stopped all three Colorado attempts in the shootout, carrying the San Jose Sharks two points closer to the presidents' trophy with a 1-0 victory over the Avalanche on Tuesday night.
Joe Pavelski scored the only goal during the first round of the shootout for the Sharks, who moved five points ahead of Boston for the NHL's best record. San Jose also clinched a share of its first Western Conference championship by taking a six-point lead over Detroit, although the Red Wings still have a shot at home-ice advantage.
Peter Budaj stopped 29 shots for the Avalanche, missing only Pavelski's low shot to his stick side. Colorado has lost nine of 10, but only Nabokov prevented the conference's worst team from knocking off the uninspired sharks.
(Copyright 2009 By The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)
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