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San Jose Sharks

Joe Pavelski Will Be The Next Captain Of The San Jose Sharks + Learning How To Return From The Brink

San Jose SharksI’ve been saying this for a while and it’s not because I’m some hockey expert who can see that “something special” in Joe Pavelski through my TV screen, I say this because of a comment made a few months back by some TV announcer. The comment was that Pavelski has been a team captain at every level of hockey except for, so far, the NHL and the Olympics.

I’m still not completely sure how important the captaincy is. I keep getting mixed opinions when listening to the media and talking with fans and players. But despite it all I do think that, in any situation, a leader is someone who leads by example. When Pavelski was held out of a few shifts during last nights game against the Nashville Predators, a game where the Sharks found themselves down 4 -2, you had to figure that kind of thing wouldn’t have mattered too much. In today’s professional sports we see lots of maneuvers designed to send messages and, like the debate on just how important the captaincy is, there’s another debate over whether those kind of ‘punitive’ moves actually effect a ‘true’ professional. Pavelski’s response, a 4-point (2 goal, 2 assist) period, is exactly the kind of responsiblity you want your team leader to accept. He was publicly called out and he responded - immediately. I must say that kind of mature, emotional response is something a little different for the Sharks, and it’s about time.

Speaking of ‘it’s about time’, the Sharks are finally showing some teeth. These last three “come-from-behind-in-the-third-period” games have shown me something I don’t think any Sharks fan has seen for last 3-4 years, and that is the ability to ‘find a way to win’ and find it on a consistent basis. We’ve seen the Sharks go on monumental runs, win streaks and record setting paces, but what we’ve failed to see - especially in the playoffs, is the (do I dare say) heart to win one when all else seems lost. Perhaps the ‘do or die’ experience of the Olympics, combined with what I believe to be that turning point moment, have given the Sharks the opportunity to visit AND RETURN from that one, elusive place - the brink. Admittedly, you don’t want to find yourself down in the third all the time, but as unrullytraveler said so appropriately, “if they can keep winning and dipping into that reserve tank all the way through the playoffs and bring home the cup I am not going to complain”.

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Discussion

10 comments for “Joe Pavelski Will Be The Next Captain Of The San Jose Sharks + Learning How To Return From The Brink”

  1. Let’s wait and see how well he plays in the post season before we start anointing Pavs as the next Sharks captain. My bet is that it will be Dan Boyle, although Pavs should at least get an “A”. I think you need someone who will get vocal in the locker room and on the ice and not be afraid to call out his teammates. Dan has won a cup with Tampa Bay and is a bit more seasoned than Pavs.

    Great game last night and you got to love how the crowd chanted USA, USA, USA after Pavs spin-o-rama and third star interview. I gave me goose bumps.

    Posted by FC Sharks FanNo Gravatar | March 12, 2010, 3:37 pm
  2. Thanks for the mention in your post. Unfortunately, last night we saw the Sharks unable to hold the lead, and lose in overtime. A shame, to be sure. The one saving grace, I suppose, is that Nabby did not get the loss, but even that is bad news because the defense and Greiss couldn’t stand up to the Florida Panthers–a sub .500 team. Add to that that it happened in the Shark Tank. Well, they play the Ducks tonight, who they have beaten five times this year already. Here’s to hoping they will make it a clean six and continue to sweep the series. It won’t make up for what happened in the time of which we do not speak, but it would still be nice.

    Posted by unrulytravllerNo Gravatar | March 14, 2010, 9:55 am
  3. Anyone else nervous of the Sharks play of late? Is it the Olympic break? Is it Nabby’s new mask?

    Posted by FC Sharks FanNo Gravatar | March 15, 2010, 8:37 am
  4. Not that it’s entirely his fault, but Nabokov doesn’t seem to be playing as well as he was just before the Olympic break. He let in a few bad ones, including a not-so-impressive shot from the blue line with no on screening him.

    Posted by sharksfanNo Gravatar | March 15, 2010, 10:04 am
  5. It is easy to place the blame on Nabby–and he deserves some of it–but I am nervous about the Sharks’ play as of late. Especially their defense and their lack of control. Last night, for example, they took way too many stupid penalties, and this seems to be the M.O. of the Sharks these days–bad penalties, bad first and second periods, and relying on their effort to get them through the third. It had worked out, for the most part, recently, but it is not something that we should bank on. They need to suck it up (whatever it happens to be) and get back to playing good, simple, strong hockey, especially since there is a good possibility that we will face Detroit in the first round. Not something I am looking forward to right now, no matter how weak Detroit seems at the moment.

    Posted by unrulytravllerNo Gravatar | March 15, 2010, 4:18 pm
  6. Remember this time last year? We were sliding into the playoffs but we did have almost 1/3 of our team out with injury. This year that excuse is not an issue. I don’t understand why Todd McLellan is shuffling lines again this late in the season. It looks like the road to the Stanley Cup might include trips through Detroit and Chicago - do you think we’re up for it?

    Posted by sharksfanNo Gravatar | March 16, 2010, 10:41 am
  7. I remember I did not want to play Anaheim in the first round last year and I don’t want to play Detroit in the first round this year. It’s too soon to start looking at match-ups because they are so many different scenarios. Hell, we could finish anywhere from first to fourth if the Yotes catch up. But I admit, I’m guilty of scoreboard watching and standings.

    McLellan is juggling lines for several reasons. One is to spark the play of some of his players. We have seen Seto, Clowe and Manny moved around just to get them kick started. Also last year when we lost 1/3 of our players to injury, it seemed no one could play with anyone else. Also sometimes you want to match your top lines against a checking line so they start to play more physical, which is what we will see in the playoffs.

    Speaking of play-off positioning. Let’s say if the Sharks win late in the season and they finish first, they would face Detroit. But if they lose and finish second, they would face Nashville. Do you tank a game?

    Posted by FC Sharks FanNo Gravatar | March 16, 2010, 1:19 pm
  8. *sigh*, unfortunately I think it’s less a matter of ‘do you tank a game’ as opposed to ‘can you win a must-win game’…

    Posted by sharksfanNo Gravatar | March 16, 2010, 1:22 pm
  9. Ouch!

    O.K. enough of this negativity. Sharks win tonight 4-1.

    GO SHARKS!

    Posted by FC Sharks FanNo Gravatar | March 16, 2010, 2:46 pm
  10. Damm. I think I jinxed them.

    Posted by FC Sharks FanNo Gravatar | March 16, 2010, 7:58 pm

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