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08-14-2011, 11:59 AM
  #114
JGRB
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Quote:
Originally Posted by le_sean View Post
I've always been down on the Sharks, but I think this is their year.

Thornton is now showing up when it counts, he's been carrying that team in the playoffs the last two seasons. Burns is a great acquisition, Boyle can only do so much for a team. Speed is what killed them against the Canucks so they traded their slowest forward (Heatley) for more speed.

If they can get themselves a decent scorer for their 3rd line, I think they will be set.
I agree, always been a downer on the Sharks but I actually love the moves they made this off-season. Boyle-Burns is probably the best 1-2 in the league on defense right now in my opinion. Havlat is a better overall player than Heatley is in my opinion as well, yes Heatley is a better pure sniper but I seriously question his commitment to the game when the chips are down and he has not been as good since seperated from Spezza/Alfie. No question Havlat is better defensively, it's not even close. The only potential knock on him is health, but he seems to have that beat now.

As for our standing in this prediction, ultimately it all comes down to health and what kind of progression we see from our youngsters and if Gomez and to a lesser extent Cammy can have improvements on their down years. If we have Markov/Subban healthy all year we are making the playoffs, if our youngsters (Weber, Emelin, Patches, Eller, DD) progress at a moderate-to-good level we will finish well above 8th. If Gomez and Cammy can return to their previous career-high levels of play we will be winning the division.

That's just my take. On the flip side, if Markov goes down and we have a couple significant injuries up front think: Pleks and Cammy, then I think we miss the playoffs altogether. So my official stance on their prediction is that it's a safe bet all variables considered. It can easily be as high as 3rd if all things fall into place (think 07-08 health) and as low as 10th if we get hit particularly hard. My official bet is 6th, again.

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