12:51 PM EDT, Sat April 20, 2019
17 hours ago
Winning Play: Vlasic returns to form

Winning Play: Vlasic returns to form

The hottest thing this side of the Evander Kane-Ryan Reaves feud in this San Jose Sharks-Vegas Golden Knights series was the Mark Stone line. That is, before Marc-Edouard Vlasic returned from injury in San Jose’s 5-2 Game 5 victory. Peter DeBoer waited no time siccing Vlasic on Stone, Max Pacioretty and Paul Stastny, starting Vlasic and Brent Burns against the Stone line at puck drop. Through two periods, the Stone line created zero high-danger scoring chances at 5-on-5, which certainly helped the Sharks swim out to a 3-1 lead. While this wasn’t all because of Vlasic and Burns —...
18 hours ago
Playoffs Dayoffs: Preview and discussion thread, 4/19

Playoffs Dayoffs: Preview and discussion thread, 4/19

Pretty sure Avalanches douse Flames, and ... uh ... do bears eat leaves? Some do, right? I’m not a bearologist. Early this morning, the Detroit Red Wings hired former Tampa Bay Lightning general manager Steve Yzerman, in the biggest surprise of the year, to be sure. We’ll soon find out if what Yzerman brought to the Lightning was fleeting, or if the Wings, too, can build a true powerhouse contender that dominates the league and falls flat on its face in the first round. Better start trading for New York Rangers, like, today. The San Jose Sharks live to fight another day, which means, if...
23 hours ago
Quick Bites: Die another day

Quick Bites: Die another day

The Sharks pull out a complete effort to force Game 6 in Vegas. The San Jose Sharks with the season on the line in Game 5, were facing an uphill battle. Prior to last night, when the Sharks were down 3-1 in a series, they had gone 0-6 in trying to force an extra game. But that wasn’t the case last night. The Sharks played some of their best hockey of the season, soundly defeating the Vegas Golden Knights by a score of 5-2. Since Game 2 (and for much of Martin Jones’ season), there has been an early goal within the first five minutes of the period, as the Knights scored early on Martin...
Apr 19, 2019
Joe Thornton announced as Masterton Trophy Finalist

Joe Thornton announced as Masterton Trophy Finalist

Thornton scored 51 points this season as a 39-year-old. The NHL has announced that San Jose Sharks center Joe Thornton has been voted as one of three finalists for the NHL’s Masterton Trophy. The Masterton Trophy is awarded to the player who “best exemplifies the qualities of perseverance, sportsmanship and dedication to hockey,” as voted by the members of the Professional Hockey Writers’ Association. From the release: Thornton, 39, overcame major injuries from the prior two seasons, suffering a torn ACL and MCL in both his left knee (2017) and right knee (2018). His rehabilitation...
Apr 19, 2019
Golden Knights 2, Sharks 5: Hertl scores twice as Sharks stay in the hunt

Golden Knights 2, Sharks 5: Hertl scores twice as Sharks stay in the hunt

A Sharks forward has lost teeth in both wins of the series Hockey folks like to talk about making sacrifices, especially in the playoffs. In Game 5 against the Vegas Golden Knights, Logan Couture’s teeth were made an offering. The hockey gods must have accepted the reluctant sacrifice, as the Sharks won to force Game 6 in Las Vegas on Sunday. Tomas Hertl scored the first goal of the game, which the Sharks hadn’t done since Game 1. Logan Couture crashed the net to give the Sharks a 2-0 lead which held until the final minute of the period. Barclay Goodrow tipped Justin Braun’s shot...
Apr 18, 2019
Positive regression & inconsistent officiating?

Positive regression & inconsistent officiating?

Special Teams The Vegas Golden Knights power play has scored a clutch goal in every win in this series. In Game 2, Mark Stone broke a 3-3 deadlock with a goal. In Game 3, Paul Stastny’s backdoor dagger gave Vegas a three-goal lead. In Game 4, Max Pacioretty greeted back-up Aaron Dell with a goal, negating the San Jose Sharks’ strong play at 5-on-5. The Golden Knights have scored six power play goals in this series, leading all playoff teams. Part of their success have been zone entries at 5-on-4. In Game 1, Vegas was able to take advantage of aggressive San Jose stand-ups to gain the...
Apr 17, 2019
Winning Play: Blueprint for a comeback

Winning Play: Blueprint for a comeback

It’s not often that you can draw positives from a 5-0 rout. But for the San Jose Sharks, down 3-1 in their series with the Vegas Golden Knights, Game 4 offered some blueprint for a comeback. Comeback Starts on Forecheck Before Game 4, Logan Couture noted, “Our forecheck has been the main difference. I think we’ve done a decent job of breaking pucks out. ”I think on our forecheck, we haven’t done a good-enough job of sustaining pressure in their end. They’ve been able to break out easily. When they get speed through the neutral zone, that’s when they’re dangerous.” Just a...
Apr 17, 2019
Playoffs Dayoffs: Preview and discussion thread, 4/17

Playoffs Dayoffs: Preview and discussion thread, 4/17

Three more teams are facing facing elimination. It’s not over, but it might be over. With the news that head coach Peter DeBoer is calling on Martin Jones to start the San Jose Sharks’ elimination Game 5 against the Vegas Golden Knights on Thursday at the SAP Center, you’ll be forgiven if any lingering hopes you had withered away into dust. The Sharks’ record in series in which they trail three games to one is 0-9, and, while Aaron Dell’s record over the course of the regular season is not particularly inspiring, the decision to go back to Jones is baffling. Still, you may have...
Apr 17, 2019
Quick Bites: Sharks pushed to the brink

Quick Bites: Sharks pushed to the brink

In the words of Stephen A. Smith, “This is bad. This is very, very bad.” I am sorry to say that the recap of Game 4 of the San Jose Sharks and the Vegas Golden Knights’ first round matchup that you are about to read is extremely unpleasant — but the 5-0 takedown of the Sharks last night was equally as unpleasant. Right off the puck drop of the opening frame, the Sharks surprisingly didn’t allow a goal within the first minute of the game. Unfortunately, they did allow one within the first two minutes. The line of Mark Stone, Max Pacioretty and Paul Stastny once again made the...
Apr 16, 2019
Sharks at Golden Knights: Lines, gamethread, and where to watch

Sharks at Golden Knights: Lines, gamethread, and where to watch

Things aren’t trending in the right direction. Things aren’t looking so good for the San Jose Sharks. Their starting goaltender is fighting through changes to his game and the team in front of him has been letting the series slip away. We know the Vegas Golden Knights have had their way with the Sharks’ penalty kill. At 5-on-5, the picture isn’t any prettier. Natural Stat Trick’s game logs show the team’s performance in score- and venue-adjusted shot and expected goal (xG) share has dwindled as the series has worn. Game 1: 54.6% shot share // 43.9% expected goal share Game 2:...
Apr 16, 2019
Sharks 0 at Golden Knights 5: Twisting the knife

Sharks 0 at Golden Knights 5: Twisting the knife

Things aren’t trending in the right direction. It’s hard to watch the end of a game when the team getting blown out can’t help but take stupid penalties and allowing the victors to step on their proverbial throats even harder. It’s even harder when that game takes the team down 3-1 in the opening series of the playoffs. Despite moments of individual flare, it’s difficult to find a concerted team effort anywhere in these 60 minutes. We would be remiss if we did not include the coach in all of this mess, however. Sharks’ bench boss Pete DeBoer only just inserted the skilled...
Apr 16, 2019
Greg Balloch on why Sharks should start Dell

Greg Balloch on why Sharks should start Dell

Are the San Jose Sharks done? According to Greg Balloch of InGoal Magazine, they are if they continue to start Martin Jones. Balloch talks about how the Vegas Golden Knights have exploited Jones, what Jones might have done to damage his game last summer and why San Jose should turn to Aaron Dell right now, but still rely on Jones long-term. Fear the Fin: How has Vegas taken advantage of Martin Jones in this series? Greg Balloch: The big scouting report thing with Martin Jones is his lack of rotation, back to the post. I’m starting to think it’s not a technical choice but a physical...
Apr 15, 2019
Joe Thornton suspended one game

Joe Thornton suspended one game

Jumbo Joe will sit out for Game 4. The NHL Department of Player Safety has suspended forward Joe Thornton one game for his illegal check to the head of forward Tomas Nosek in the second period of Game 3 of the Western Conference First Round series between the San Jose Sharks and Vegas Golden Knights. Thornton was given a minor penalty for an illegal check to the head at 16:45 of the second period following the hit on Nosek. Here’s the full video, along with the Department of Player Safety’s explanation: They explain that 1) the primary point of contact between Thornton and Nosek is...
Apr 15, 2019
Playoffs Round Up: Stanley Cup champion Columbus Blue Jackets

Playoffs Round Up: Stanley Cup champion Columbus Blue Jackets

All hail the underdog! The playoffs have been a wild ride and not just for our San Jose Sharks. We have suspensions, tied series and upsets all around. It’s the greatest time of the year, isn’t it? If the stress of the Sharks’ first round is stressing you out, here is a nice distraction. Eastern Conference Tampa Bay Lightning vs Columbus Blue Jackets This series may be my favorite one right now. Currently, the Columbus Blue Jackets are one win away from sweeping the series and advancing to the next round. Let’s not forget, the Tampa Bay Lightning were first place in the entire NHL...
Apr 15, 2019
Playoffs Dayoffs: Preview and discussion thread, 4/15

Playoffs Dayoffs: Preview and discussion thread, 4/15

It’s playoff suspension day, everyone hold your breath for, like, four hours. The first round of the NHL Stanley Cup playoffs is close to half over, and has already had more than its share of surprises. The presumptive favorite Tampa Bay Lightning and the persistent favorite Pittsburgh Penguins are both on the brink of elimination staring into the void of 0-3 series deficits, and our San Jose Sharks, while only down 2-1 in their series against the Vegas Golden Knights, certainly look like less of a contender than we’d like. Luckily, the first round is brimming with hockey to cleanse the...