The shots were ringing off posts and it was music to San Jose goalie Steve Shields' ears.
"It was like Jingle Bells in my head," Shields said of the Boston Bruins hitting the post five times in opening period of a 2-2 tie Saturday afternoon. "It was just uncanny. I guess it's better to be lucky than to be good."
Marco Sturm scored the tying goal with 17.7 seconds left in the second period as the Sharks extended their unbeaten streak to five games (4-0-1).
Boston outshot San Jose 15-5 and led 2-0 after one period, but the lead could have been bigger. Despite five shots hitting a post, only one ended up in the net.
"Maybe the worst thing that happened is we dominated in the first period," said Boston goalie Byron Dafoe, who had a pair of stellar stops late in regulation. "It was an outstanding first period. I thought it would be a runaway."
Steve Heinze and Ray Bourque scored for the Bruins. Joe Murphy had San Jose's other goal.
Boston coach Pat Burns felt his team's effort faltered after the strong opening period.
"We wanted the headlines. It was so easy to go the way we were going," Burns said. "In the second period we decided maybe (we'll) cheat a little bit here, a little bit there. The next thing you know the puck's in the net."
After Boston grabbed its 2-0 lead, the Sharks, 6-1-1 in their last seven games, battled back to tie it with two second-period goals.
"We just kind of hung in there and snuck out with a point," San Jose coach Darryl Sutter said.
Heinze gave Boston a 1-0 lead midway into the first period when he collected his own rebound that bounced off the right post and slipped a backhander past Shields.
Bourque's power-play goal 17:36 into the period made it 2-0. He beat Shields with a slap shot from the point.
Murphy's fluke goal midway into the second cut it to 2-1 when his pass from th left circle went into the net off Bruins defenseman Kyle McLaren's right skate.
"They got a lucky bounce on that first goal and then it was a game," Bourque said.
Sturm tied it by sliding a wrist shot under Dafoe from the right circle.
"It's kind of like a loss," Dafoe said. "It looked like two different teams in the first period as opposed to the rest of the game."
Bruins wing P.J. Axelsson had a clean breakaway with just over nine minutes left in the third period, but his shot sailed over the net.
Dafoe's two saves came with just over five minutes left in the third. The first was a sliding stop of Sturm's shot from the slot. The second came only 12 seconds later, a pad save on Mike Ricci's shot on a 2-on-1 break.
The Sharks remained winless in their NHL existence at Boston, now 0-5-2 since joining the league in 1991.
Boston, currently holding the Eastern Conference's final playoff spot, is 3-1-1 in its last five games.
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