After last night’s performance against the Edmonton Oilers, you have to wonder if the San Jose Sharks already began their All-Star break. A 2-1 loss in the shootout to the 2nd worst team in the NHL. Oh and don’t forget they had their backup goalie in net which looked like a Vezina candidate. It’s a huge game confidence wise. Could see some roster moves coming after the break so it’s vital to get going now.
Tonight’s game is one of the four “games in hand” for the Sharks as they take on the Calgary Flames at the Saddledome. The team will have an outright lead or a technical one. Calgary has been one of the best teams over the last couple of weeks. Since their 9-0 embarrassment to the Boston Bruins, they are 5-1-1 in their last seven games. Meanwhile, since the Sharks beat the Flames last week, they are winless in three and have not shown any killer instinct. Confidence has to be picked up, and those youngsters are now going to need to show what they’re made of.
With injuries happening quicker than you can say Cal Clutterbuck, the depth of this team is being tested now rather than the playoffs. This is a good thing because it will legitimately give Sharks General Manager Doug Wilson time to look at the roster to see what he will need to do prior to the trade deadline. A top 6 forward to fill in for Ryane Clowe and Martin Havlat? A depth forward that can play two way hockey? A defenseman that can fill for others if they go down?
Nonetheless, while this team is one game away from a week rest (with the exception of Todd McLellan and Logan Couture) this is a game they absolutely can not afford to lose. The effort needs to be stronger, the desire to win needs to show more. Work hard tonight, rest up tomorrow.
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