Well, here we are. Round 2 and the Sharks get none other than the team who has been to the Stanley Cup Finals the last 2 years running; the Detroit Red Wings. The Wings are coming off an astounding performance on Tuesday in which they annihilated the Coyotes 6-1 while the Sharks have been on standby since Saturday. During 4 meetings in the regular season the Sharks went 1-2-1 against the Wings while Scoring just 6 goals and allowing 11. Surprisingly enough, Joe Thornton scored half of the goals for the Sharks. Maybe the Red Wings are just what he needs to bring some light into his(and the entire teams) past playoff failures.
If the Sharks have any dreams of winning this series then they will need more than the heroics of the 2nd line to propel them. My main concern with the boys in teal is the ‘top line’ who had only ***1 GOAL*** against the Avs in 6 games! Patty was the lone goal scorer and it was a very insignificant goal at that. The 3 have a combined 10 points in the 17 games and have a +/- of -7. OK so the Avs shut them down, but there are many other ways to contribute to a game other than scoring and these 3 seemed completely invisible. They are, by a long shot, the worst players on this team so far. It is probably best to keep them split up for a good chunk of time to spread out the scoring but just as long as they do not mess with the Big Pavelskis’ line.
The studs of the team so far were very easy to point out:
3.) Evgeni Nabokov – Posted .926 save% and 1.76GAA. He has made most of the saves that he needed to make and gave San Jose a chance to win every game.
2.) Ryane Clowe - 8 points, including 7 assists, have him tied on the team for the points lead. He has been phenomenal along the boards in the offensive zone and he never quits on a play.
1.) Joe Pavelski - 5 goals and 3 assists and tied on with Clowe for the points lead. Talk about a Clutch player! Timely scoring, including an OT goal in game 4, had him almost single handedly knock off the Avs. Here is hoping for another brilliant series!
I am a firm believer in that if you want to be the champs then you have to beat the champs and Detroit is about as big as they come. San Jose will be looking for some revenge for the 06-07 defeat in the 2nd round so I expect this series to be very hard fought and will not be surprised to see this go into 6 or 7 games. This is the time for the Sharks to step up to the plate and show us what they got.
Thornton, Marleau and Heatley had their rest vs the Avs so now that the warm up is done it is time for them show up vs Detroit. San Jose does not wants to take this series to a game 7 because we all saw what happened to Phoenix. The Red Wings have a lot of experience in late series games and is used to those pressure situations.
Sharks take in in 6. Lock it in!
About the Author
Written by Justin Lewis