Is that…are we in…YES!!!
PWR is back, bitches. Unfortunately, I’m sick this week, so this recap is going to be a little short. Don’t worry y’all, next week will be War and Peace length.
[If this next bit looks the same, that’s because it is. Pacific War Room started a week later than we were planning.]
Here’s a quick season recap for those of you who ignored us because, well, we weren’t doing much until very recently:
If you’ve missed the first half of the Sharks’ season, don’t worry. You didn’t miss much. Gone are your father’s Sharks. The current iteration of this team likes to play bad hockey and not win. A lot. To summarize the season thus far:
1. We finally have a captain, Joe Pavelski. Really, he should have been given it last year, but w/e, last year was last year. We’re still not bitter. No one is mad still and thinks the franchise is fucking its own face. No one thinks that.
2. Raffi Torres got another suspension and has yet to play a game this season (Surprise).
3. This team likes to be streaky. This includes several 5+ game losing streaks along with an 8 game winning streak. But mostly losing streaks.
4. They don’t like to win at home. Probably because our new goal song this year is utter shite:
Inside the Tank, it sounds like this:
Yes, we know it sucks. Yes, steps are being taken to fix it.
5. There is none scoring depth outside of the top two lines.
6. Martin Jones was a fantastic pick up for this team. Too bad we’re wasting his great play by not scoring goals.
7. I didn’t win the PowerBall
88. Brent Burns is filthy.
So it’s been a tough first year for new head coach and Canadian Louis C.K. impersonator Peter DeBoer. He’s done some ok things with lines and playing style, like getting rid of Joe Thornton’s infuriating drop passes during offensive rushes. He’s even tackled the mindset of the team by doing little things like moving home game morning skates to the practice facility, rather than SAP Center to change how the boys view playing at home. However, injuries to big producers like Logan Couture and severe regressions and mid-season slumps for early producers like Tomas Hertl, Joel Ward, and Patrick Marleau haven’t helped the team much.
So that was the Jonathan Quick & Dirty of the Sharks’ season; here’s what they’ve been up to more recently:
[Here’s the new stuff:]
Though the current standings paint a much better picture of the team compared to what was described, note that the ascension up the Pacific Division standings has only happened recently, due to the idea that maybe we should start playing real hockey. The Sharks are surging after a lackluster first 2/5ths of the season. Rookie Finnish product Joonas Donskoi, Captain Joe Pavelski, and Jumbo Joe “I’ll whip my cock out if I score 4 goals” Thornton have been producing like early 20th century child labor: All the time. As of Sunday night, the Sharks have 16 out of a possible 18 points for their last 9 games. Nearly every single player off the team is off the schniede. They’ve figured out how to not blow leads and instead are blowing loads all over other teams’ faces. With that stunning visual in mind, let’s recap what faces got a special sauce drenching this week:
4-3 (SO) Loss at home against OTTAWA
Ok, so maybe not every single team they face gets a load dropped on them, but this game was edging close to that kind of finish. If it weren’t for the latest edition of “Stalocking” the Sharks could have won this game. See Exhibit A
He does this at least once a game. Hey Alex, I wonder why you’re still a back up. Add in a few bad choices in the shootout, and you have the Sharks ending their 5 game winning streak. They still get a point though, and continue to climb the Pacific Division standings. Unfortunately, Alex Stalock is still with the team.
3-1 Win at ARIZONA
I don’t remember this game very well. I was playing the Randy Hahn #DesertDogs drinking game. We scored two goals in the first ten minutes and I spent the remainder of the game picking myself up off the floor. The Sharks improved to 16-6-2 on the road and are working with the NHL to move the remainder of their home games to road locations so maybe they can continue to win.
4-3 Win at home against MINNESOTA
One of the most exciting games this year, the Wild and Sharks went back and forth all game long. Luckily, Captain Joe Pavelski is clutch
After this game, Joe Thornton is on an 8 game point streak, as are the Sharks. Illuminati confirmed. Can’t talk much more about the game, since we have another the next night against the Kings.
3-2(OT) Loss at home against Los Angeles
I hate the Kings.
To this point in the season, the road team in this series has won each game. I hate the Kings. So, naturally, following some of their best hockey of the season, the Sharks face the Kings in San Jose to end that streak. I hate the Kings. Of course, the Sharks decided they wanted to win the game, so we started Martin Jones on the second night of a back to back to avoid Stalocking the game away. I hate the Kings. I use this graphic a lot to illustrate my points, but it bears repeating why we hate Alex Stalock:
I hate the Kings. As you can see, he has trouble stopping the puck, on account of all of the possible holes for skaters to shoot the puck through. I hate the Kings. So, Peter DeBoer has no choice but to give Jonesy a heavier workload this week to close in on the Kings and 1st place in the Pacific Division. I hate the Kings.
If you’re a Kings fan, you know how this game went. I hate the Kings. If you’re not a Kings fan:
Pavelski scored a beauty.
Jones committed grand larceny twice to end the 2nd.
Donskoi has slick moves (and a 5 game point streak) and Couture bombs it.
Lecavalier scored with seconds left, and Gaborik finished it in OT.
I hate the Kings.
All in all, it was close, not dirty, and good hockey all night long. The OT period was quite possibly the most exciting one I’ve seen all season long.
The loss sees San Jose finish at 54 points and second place in the Pacific, with a game in hand on LA.
Looking ahead, the Sharks face the Avalanche on Tuesday before Captain Joe Pavelski and Modern Day Caveman Brent Burns head to Nashville to play in a ridiculous 3v3 tourney with the NHL’s best. But hey, at least they let John Scott play. Praise be unto HIM:
Base photo credit to JD397 on reddit.com/r/hockey. I added in other stuff.