Could a game against the worst team in the league be a must win? Perhaps it can. Currently 1-3-1 on the nine game tennis road trip. A loss in Ohio today could mean a trigger to changes for Team Teal.
Courtesy of Kevin Kurz (CSNCalifornia.com) and David Pollak (San Jose Mercury News) on Twitter, it looks like goalie Antti Niemi will get the start in net, and defenseman Marc-Edouard Vlasic will play with a cage covering his entire face. Torrey Mitchell was seen to be the last person on the ice at the morning skate, usually an indication that he will be scratched tonight. Look for newcomer Dominic Moore to get additional playing time especially on the penalty kill.
San Jose is currently just two points up on second place Phoenix (yes, the same Phoenix team who was 12th in the West when the Sharks faced them right after the All-Star break) granted with games in hand. However, for those to be helpful, you got to win them. If the conference was seeded without division leaders getting the top three seeds, the Sharks would be in the #7 spot and would be against Vancouver. Their 69 points only puts them ahead by four points on 9th place Los Angeles and nine points ahead of 13th place Anaheim, who has quietly soared since January and are making a huge run to sneaking into the Stanley Cup Playoffs.
There is no more letting up. Time to get it done. A dominant performance would be huge before San Jose heads to the hockey media capital of the world, who are so easy to give the Sharks the “choker” label in every way. LET’S PUCKING DO THIS!
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