San Jose Sharks 2017-18 Season Preview

When the San Jose Sharks get a power play during a home game, they play the Jaws theme over the loudspeakers and the fans use their arms to mimic a shark chomp. It’s all very cute.

The Sharks have been a really good team lately. I thought they were at their best during the 2013-14 season and didn’t think anyone could beat them. Then they lost in the first round and missed the playoffs completely the following year. What do I know?

But in 2016, they made it to the Stanley Cup Final, before ultimately losing to Pittsburgh.

Now, it feels like their window of opportunity is closing.

FORWARDS

Joe Thornton – His beard might be bigger than his face. He is a legend. He is a future hall of famer. He is one of the best passers to ever play in the NHL. He is starting to slow down so don’t expect any more 70 point seasons from him, but he could still put up a respectable 50-60 point campaign.

Joe Pavelski – After Patrick Marleau and Thornton had their run as Captain, Pavelski took the torch. I don’t think people talk about him enough. At his best, he can reach 30 goals/40 assists. I don’t know if he’s at his best anymore, though.

Logan Couture – He’s been a solid second line centre for the Sharks for his entire career. More of the same this season.

Notable: Tomas Hertl, Joonas Donskoi, Kevin Labanc

DEFENSE

Brent Burns – His beard might be bigger than his face, too. He’s one of the best defenseman in the NHL. He had 76 points last season and 75 points the year before. I don’t think he’ll reach 70 for a third straight season, though.

Marc-Edouard Vlasic – They call him, “Pickles”. He’s been an Olympian. He’s been a steady defensive, and sometimes offensive presence for the Sharks since 2006.

Tim Heed – He’s a 26-year-old rookie from Sweden who has found time on the first power play unit. The Sharks normally went with 4 forwards and 1 defenseman on the top PP unit, but Marleau left and Heed came in. Hey, when opportunity knocks…

Notable: Justin Braun, Brenden Dillon

GOALIES

Martin Jones – After being a backup in Los Angeles for a couple of seasons, he was traded to Boston. Boston then traded him to San Jose because LA would never do that. That was in 2015. Since then, he’s been one of the best goalies in the league. I’m just surprised Boston still does business with San Jose after trading them Thornton and getting (pretty much) nothing back.

Aaron Dell – He got a shutout last night and has a 1.94 Goals Against Average this season. Solid backup.

FUN FACTS

1. Their mascot is named SJ Sharkie, which I’ve always felt has been a cheap nickname. You don’t see the Leafs naming their mascot, TM Leafie. Or the Devils naming theirs, NJ Devil. Just seems like a cop out.

2. The Sharks have missed the playoffs only 6 times since they entered the league in 1991.

3. They play out of the SAP Center. There is a food place called Armadillo Willy’s inside, where you can get beef brisket, pork spareribs, BBQ chicken thighs, and spicy peanut slaw. Hungry?

WHAT CHRIS THINKS

The Sharks are a mess. Their fowards are too old and not skilled enough, and they spend too much money on defense. Even worse, the Sharks have already parted with their second and third round picks for this upcoming draft.

LAST MINUTE OF PLAY

I think the Sharks are just barely holding on to what they’ve got, it doesn’t make a difference if they make it or not, they’ve got each other and that’s enough for love, they’ll give it a shot.

Seriously though, their best players are getting older and I know they’re bringing in young talent like Donskoi, Hertl, and Labanc, to help ease the transition, but I don’t see any of them becoming superstars.

I think they’ll make the playoffs, but I don’t expect them to do much.

ONE WILD PREDICTION

Armadillo Willy’s will run out of food during one home game.

POST-GAME

Last Preview: Pittsburgh Penguins
Next Preview: St. Louis Blues

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About Paul

This is the part where I'm supposed to write something interesting about myself and you'll read it and think, "That's not that interesting." So let's not do that and just think about pizza instead, on the count of three. One, two, three. Donuts. Now, wasn't that interesting?
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8 Responses to San Jose Sharks 2017-18 Season Preview

  1. I once thought that the SJ Sharkie mascot name may have evolved as a play on words involving an old television series starring the late Don Rickles, entitled… “C.P.O. Sharkey.” Rickles played a Chief Petty Officer in the U.S. Navy—thus the vague assumption with the idea of water, sharks, and the Rickles way of chewing up the scenery. But I’ve never been able to connect the dots there—I failed dot connecting in Kindergarten. As for the Sharks (and being a Sharks fan), I couldn’t agree more with your assessment of the San Jose Sharks and their chances for this—or any other season. But we’re long-suffering fans out here, and are used to failure. However, if we should ever find a way to win Lord Stanley’s Cup, then you could say the Sharks smelled blood in the water. Until then—GO SHARKS!

    Liked by 1 person

    • Paul says:

      Rickles was the best, I fully endorse your theory! That’s what they must’ve been thinking for sure.

      There were a couple of years there where I’d watch the Sharks play and they’d just skate (swim?) circles around everyone and were unstoppable. Sorry for taking Marleau from you…we almost took Thornton too but he decided to stay out there. Hope you guys don’t have to suffer as long as Leaf fans have.

      Like

  2. Dutch Lion says:

    Great post Paul! I have thoughts. 1. Joe Thornton is indeed fantastic. Ever notice how he likes to just sit there behind the goal and sometimes the other team lets him? They seem to be so scared of his passing that they try to intercept his passes rather than attack him behind the net. It’s comical. He’s been amazing for a long time. 2. Ever been to that SAP Center?….. Me neither. I’m now more interested because of that Armadillo Willy’s food. That’s a sign of good writing. 3. I too love Bon Jovi. 4. With you on the mascot thing. SJ Sharkie? I mean, “C’mon man!” What creative person thought of that one? Geez!

    Liked by 1 person

    • Paul says:

      1. He’s very Gretzky-esque in that way. JUst hangs out behind the night, uses his body to shield the puck and then finds the open man.
      2. Armadillo Willy’s had me drooling over here!
      4. It’s almost as if it was opening night of their first season and they realized they didn’t have a mascot so they created it on the spot.

      Liked by 1 person

  3. Yoly says:

    Sounds like fun….I’ve only been to one hockey game so far…I love it!!! It’s like watching boxing but with two guys who can’t balance themselves..lol

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Pingback: St. Louis Blues 2017-18 Season Preview | The Captain's Speech

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