April 5, 2012; Los Angeles, CA, USA; San Jose Sharks defenseman Marc-Edouard Vlasic (44) left wing Daniel Winnik (34) and right wing Tommy Wingels (57) before a face off against the Los Angeles Kings during the first period at Staples Center. Mandatory Credit: Gary A. Vasquez-US PRESSWIRE

Patience and Understanding

If last night’s Kings Stanley Cup Win proved anything, its that San Jose Sharks fans are not going to be happy until Lord Stanley takes a few laps around the frozen Shark infested water that is the Tank. As I watched last nights slaughter of the New Jersey Devils I kept one eye on my twitter feed and emails streaming into my inbox. While I’m sure many of you did as well, I wanted to take a moment to share a few thoughts with you all on the current fan frustration pouring out of San Jose. Number one, I think it is going to be imperative in the upcoming months that we, as a fan base, have patience and understanding to some degree as the team once again finds itself in a state rebuilding and transition. In order for San Jose to stand a fighting chance next year they will have to (and I expect them to) make some major moves. Here is what I really want to draw your attention to. It is no secret that there are many household Sharks names that we all appreciate as individual players, but they just can’t seem to mesh as a unit. So, as favorites are traded, we will have to remember that this is what we asked for. If we want a true cup contending team, we’re going to have to get rid of quite a few pieces of our complex puzzle that just don’t have the right form.

So if and when we lose those players, try to remain calm and look at it from the perspective of, if we want the cup we can’t have (insert unidentified player here). So ask yourself, what…and who, are you willing to sacrifice to bring Lord Stanley to San Jose?

The second thing I want to touch on is that we choose to spend our money and go to these games. We choose to support this team, and we choose to feel their victories as well as their frustrations. Since we make this choice, it is unfair to say that the team owes us anything. In addition to that, many players on the Sharks were brought in well after the team’s inception and it is unfair to hold them accountable for the “sins of their fathers” so to speak. We should be holding the annual team accountable for their season…one year at a time. So did the 2011-2012 Sharks fail to deliver, yes. Should we automatically criticize the 2012-2013 team? No. Should we put added pressure on the new additions to next season’s team because their predecesors failed? No. Keep in mind that while we will maintain core players we have had in the past, they will react and play differently based on the players brought in over the next few months and the players we lose over the next few months.

I am not saying these things to criticize long standing Sharks fans, I just want to remind you all that Hockey teams are fluid and constantly changing. Saying that the Islanders are an awesome team is almost laughable to most people based on their performance last season, but I will remind you that they won the Stanley Cup FOUR times in a row (1980, 81′, 82′, and 83′). You don’t see us praising the current team based on the greatness of the teams (notice I use the word teams because every time the roster changes the team changes), so why should we criticize our future Sharks based on the past? Let’s stop focusing on everything that hasn’t worked for us, take some of the pressure off, and give the leadership a chance to make necessary moves without us crucifying them for every decision. Somewhere in the future there will be a Cup for the Sharks and it may be sooner rather than later. The LA Kings waited over 40 years before they finally had a team that could do it and we may be waiting just as long. Have faith Sharks fans, there is a team out there waiting to be put together, and when they do the victory will be well worth the wait.

~ALH

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