San Jose Sharks: Road Heroics Mask Deeper Issues for Team Teal

December 9th, 2010 by Patrick Goulding II Leave a reply »
The San Jose Sharks completed their first extended road trip of the season on Thursday night: five games with stops in Ottawa, Montreal, Detroit, Philadelphia and Buffalo. In the end the Sharks went 3-2-0, gaining six points in the Western Conference standings.

Given the Sharks roller-coaster start to 2010-2011 and their disappointing 4-4-2 road record leading into the trip, one might see the 3-2-0 outcome as a major sign of progress. Look a little deeper and you may find even more reason for encouragement.

The Sharks started the trip with a 4-0 drubbing of the Ottawa Senators in a hostile ScotiaBank Place, where Dany Heatley was afforded a rude welcome in his return to Canada's capital. The Sharks followed that effort with a less-than-stellar loss to Montreal, in a game where they were not good enough to win, but on most nights probably would not have been bad enough to lose.

That set the stage for their rematch with the Detroit Red Wings, after the Wings had handed them a 5-2 loss at HP Pavilion the week before. Despite being outplayed for most of the first period, an early timeout by Todd McLellan rallied the Sharks and captain Joe Thornton so ...

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