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San Jose Sharks

San Jose Sharks - No Two Wins Are Alike

sharksfan Overheard on XM NHL Home Ice: Phil Esposito asked Bill Clement what he thought of the San Jose Sharks. His response was, and I summarize, that if you’re a team in the National Hockey League and you’re looking at your schedule and you see the San Jose Sharks, that’s the one team that sends shivers down your spine. He went on to pontificate that no matter how you challenge them, the Sharks are faster, bigger and more skilled than the opposition.

Phil’s follow up question was if anyone knew when Evgeni Nabokov was coming back and the response was – does it matter?

The Sharks are showing that they’re becoming the complete team. After coming off that two game skid the Sharks responded with two wins which included 8 power play goals. In beating the Nashville Predators, a game I felt was one of those championship test games, Jody Shelly and Tomas Plihal alone scored enough to win that game – Shelly and Plihal?! Brian Boucher is now 6-1 with a 1.87 goals against average and a .930 save percentage, much better numbers than Nabokov’s 2.72 GAA and .891 Sv%. I think Nabokov was playing hurt all season and that stop in the shootout just exaggerated whatever injury he already had. Most people I talk to admit that, even though we were winning, Nabokov was not playing well.

Almost every game so far this season has a different story line, sometimes it’s the top line of Joe Thornton, Patrick Marleau and Devin Setoguchi, other times it’s the second, third of fourth line. Some nights it’s the defense, other nights it’s special teams. And when you swap out goalies the team marches on without skipping a beat. You get the sense that everything is coming together nicely for the Sharks and it’s only a matter of time before everything starts clicking at the same time – all four lines, the defense, special teams and goaltending. Perhaps we’ll start to see signs of this soon as we approach the 30-game mark, the time some have said it takes to learn a new system.

And finally, even though everyone on NHL Home Ice was in agreement that the San Jose Sharks are the team to beat in the NHL, the also agreed that they’re reserving any final assessments until they see how the Sharks perform in the playoffs.

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