SAN JOSE -- The Sharks welcomed Brent Burns back from his scoring hibernation but still were not able to start their four-game homestand against Eastern Conference teams on the right foot.

Elias Lindholm picked up a loose puck in front the Sharks' net and found an open Jay Harrison, whose goal with 41.2 seconds left in overtime gave the Carolina Hurricanes a 3-2 win Tuesday night.

Burns' goal, his first since Jan. 5 against Chicago -- a stretch of 19 games -- off assists from Raffi Torres and James Sheppard gave the Sharks a 2-1 lead with 28 seconds left in the first period.

But despite outshooting Carolina 25-15 in the second and third periods, San Jose was unable to come away with two points in their first game at home after the Olympic break.

Burns, who has 15 goals this season, started the game on a line with Torres and Sheppard, but midway through was back on the top line with Joe Thornton and Joe Pavelski.

"He was in the right spot, he shot the puck, and I thought he did some other things well within the game," Sharks coach Todd McLellan said of Burns. "The monkey's off his back now, and he can get back to relaxing and playing the way he needs to."

On Burns' goal, Sheppard won a battle for the puck behind the Hurricanes' net with Carolina's Ron Hainsey and fed the puck in front to Torres. He left it for Burns, whose shot beat Carolina goalie Anton Khudobin high in the stick side to give the Sharks the lead.


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Even during the scoring drought, Burns has found other ways to contribute and wasn't shy about shooting the puck. And it didn't take long for him to find some chemistry again with Thornton and Pavelski, as the line helped the Sharks outshoot Carolina 16-7 in the third period.

"I felt like a couple games ago we had some good chances and obviously the line was buzzing in Jersey," Burns said of San Jose's 4-2 win over the Devils on Sunday.

San Jose Sharks’ Marc-Edouard Vlasic (44) fights for the puck  against Carolina Hurricanes Riley Nash (20)  in the second period at SAP center in San
San Jose Sharks' Marc-Edouard Vlasic (44) fights for the puck against Carolina Hurricanes Riley Nash (20) in the second period at SAP center in San Jose, Calif. on Tuesday, March 4, 2014. (Josie Lepe/Bay Area News Group) ( Josie Lepe )

Goalie Alex Stalock made consecutive starts for the first time in his NHL career but had his personal three-game winning streak snapped. Although McLellan has liked the way Stalock has played recently, the decision on who to start in net Tuesday was also based on giving Antti Niemi a bit more time to get settled after two weeks with Team Finland at the Sochi Olympics.

Stalock won his two starts on the Sharks' recently completed three-game road trip, stopping 48 of the 53 shots he faced as San Jose beat Philadelphia 7-3 on Feb. 27 and New Jersey on Sunday. Niemi started against Buffalo on Friday, giving up three goals on 19 shots as the Sharks lost 4-2.

After he started just five games in the first three months of the season, Stalock has now started nine times since the start of January and has a 6-3 record. He made 32 saves against Carolina.

"He made save after save in the first half of the game when it could have gotten away from us," McLellan said of Stalock. "They're a big team that burrows their way into the blue paint a lot. It was a good test for us to play against that."

With just under eight minutes left in the first period, a shot from the wing by Tyler Kennedy was blocked by Khudobin. But the juicy rebound came right to Marty Havlat, who scored his fifth of the season to tie the game 1-1.

Carolina evened the score on a goal by Lindholm at the 4:16 mark of the second period, as Eric Staal from behind the Sharks' net found a wide open Lindholm in the slot.

The trade deadline is noon (PST) Wednesday, with a tweet by Bob McKenzie of TSN that the Sharks have had discussions with the Winnipeg Jets about Devin Setoguchi, who last played in San Jose during the 2010-11 season before he was traded to Minnesota in a deal that brought Burns to the South Bay.

Any Sharks deal involving Setoguchi would appear to be difficult to complete.

Setoguchi, an unrestricted free agent at the end of the season, is making $3 million this season and the Sharks do not appear to have enough room under the salary cap to acquire him for a draft pick or a prospect. This season, Setoguchi has just 11 goals and 15 assists in 61 games.

For more on the Sharks, see the Working the Corners blog at blogs.mercurynews.com/sharks. Follow Curtis Pashelka on Twitter at twitter.com/CurtisPashelka.

THURSDAY'S GAME

Pittsburgh (41-16-4) at Sharks (39-17-7), 7:30 p.m. NBCSN, CSNCA

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