Avalanche-Sharks Preview

Owners of the most points on the road in the NHL, the San Jose Sharks also have the dubious distinction of having the fewest in the league at home.

A five-game homestand can change that.

The Sharks finally emerge from their holiday break looking to avoid their longest home losing streak of the season Monday night against the Colorado Avalanche.

San Jose (17-15-2) has 28 points on the road compared to just eight at home while going 4-9-0. The Sharks have lost six of seven as host, including three straight with a 2-0 setback to Minnesota on Dec. 12.

They followed that with a 3-1-1 trip that concluded with three unanswered goals in Tuesday's 5-3 win at Los Angeles. Joe Pavelski scored the tying and go-ahead goal 92 seconds apart after getting an assist.

"There's a reason he's the captain. He was just willing us to win," coach Peter DeBoer said. "He was taking on guys physically who were much bigger than him and going into the dirty areas. When your best player is that honest and working that hard and cares that much, everyone tends to follow."

That's certainly true of Pavelski's influence on the Sharks home and road records. The center has 14 goals in 21 road games and just four in 13 at home. He hasn't scored in the last eight games in San Jose but has chipped in with six assists.

Brent Burns is also having trouble scoring at home, tallying four of his 14 goals there. The defenseman, who had an empty-netter Tuesday, had 17 goals all of last season.

Burns has four goals and six assists over his last seven meetings with the Avalanche. He had two goals while Pavelski added one in a 4-3 win at Colorado on Nov. 1, extending San Jose's winning streak in the all-time series to four games.

The Avalanche (17-17-2) have followed a season-high five-game winning streak by losing 7-4 to Toronto last Monday before emerging from the Christmas break to fall 2-1 in overtime to Arizona on Sunday.

"We should have kept the shifts a little shorter," coach Patrick Roy told the team's official website of his team's tactics in OT. "We had a rush chance and we took a shot from a bad angle. Not only that, the three guys went to the net and the puck came back. That's not the type of game we want to play. We want one guy to be aware and stay back and be smart about it. We played like an All-Star Game in that 3-on-3."

Matt Duchene leads Colorado with 16 goals, but he failed to get any during a 2-1-1 homestand. The center has 12 goals and seven assists in 20 road games. He's got six points over his last seven overall meetings with San Jose, finding the net in a 5-1 road defeat April 1.

Jarome Iginla had a goal Sunday, moving him one shy of becoming the 19th player to reach 600. He's also two back of tying Jari Kurri for 18th on the all-time list.

Iginla, though, has only scored two of his 10 goals away from home, and he has no points in the last six such games.

He hasn't scored in his last two visits to San Jose but had a goal against the Sharks on Nov. 1