SAN JOSE -- Coach Todd McLellan doesn't feel there's been anything special about the Sharks' power play or penalty kill as of late, so that's where he's placing the emphasis in the two full practices his team has before its next game.

"Players just have to be reminded that these are the things we do, this is how we do them," McLellan said. "If the other team can beat us at it, then we'll adjust. But right now that's not the case. We're beating ourselves in some of those situations."

The Sharks power play is on an 0-for-11 skid going back four games and have dropped from a respectable eighth best in the NHL with a 21.4 percent success rate to 13th at 19.6 percent.

Purcell (16) in front of San Jose Sharks’ goaltender Antti Niemi (31) in the first period at the SAP Center in San Jose, Calif. on Thursday, Nov. 21,
Purcell (16) in front of San Jose Sharks' goaltender Antti Niemi (31) in the first period at the SAP Center in San Jose, Calif. on Thursday, Nov. 21, 2013. (Nhat V. Meyer/Bay Area News Group)

On the penalty kill, San Jose has given up a goal when short-handed in four of its last six games even though the team hasn't taken many penalties. The Sharks are now tied for 17th in the NHL at 82.3 percent.

Monday the team worked on its penalty kill; Tuesday it will be the power play's turn.

"Just going over things that we did well at the start of the year that we haven't done so well lately -- our intensity, our clears, our plays on faceoffs and times for pressure," Sharks center Logan Couture said. "We were pressuring the other team's power plays at certain times and we've gotten away from that lately."

McLellan was most critical of his team's three power play attempts in San Jose's 2-1 win over the New Jersey Devils on Saturday night, saying it "took a lot of life and energy out of our team."


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"A lot of times, especially that New Jersey game, we're getting pucks on our sticks and holding onto it, not making the right plays," McLellan added Monday. "That's the big thing."

  • The Sharks have reassigned rookie Matt Nieto to Worcester. Nieto had two goals and six points in 19 games with San Jose, but had been a scratch the last two once other players got healthy.

    For more on the Sharks, see David Pollak's Working the Corners blog at blogs.mercurynews.com/sharks. Follow him on Twitter at twitter.com/PollakOnSharks.