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Are these the REAL Sharks? ..and Who is coming out of the East?

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Old
12-28-2008, 11:38 AM
  #1
WineShark
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Are these the REAL Sharks? ..and Who is coming out of the East?

Thought I'd pull this out of the Blues thread.

I've been a Boston fan since the trade that brought Joe. For me its hard to suggest they are on equal footing for the Cup just simply because that is a team that barely squeaked into the number 8 spot last year. But Chara is a big time player, Claude Julien made a big difference as has the addition of several players and some they have grown from within. Their goaltending coach (name escapes me ... former NHL'er starts with a "V"?) should get major props for turning Thomas from coal to gold, and they are near the top of the League in wins and goal differential. Yet for me, even if they get to the Cup, there will have to be a lot of bounces go their way.

WRT the Sharks, they are in a stretch of more pedestrian play. I see the issue from three points:
  1. The Sharks success makes other teams recognize a meeting with the Sharks is their chance at measuring their own growth and they get top efforts every night.
  2. Coaching staffs and scouting reports in the League are catching up with the Sharks new style of play and defensing their strategy better. The Blues are a case in point having both out-played the Men of Teal, and pressuring the point agressively to limit shots from the point.
  3. Several injuries that have exposed our lack of depth both in the AHL and in the 3rd and 4th lines. The latter point has been raised several times WRT the trades DW has made at the deadline that has reduced depth, the pipeline, and draft picks.
So .... all that as a preamble, my questions are:

Do you think the Sharks lack of depth is being exposed? Are these the real Sharks playing in close games and still getting a point, or are we the dominating team that was running over teams in October/November?


Second, which two teams from the East do you pick to get to the Eastern Conference Finals?

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12-28-2008, 11:46 AM
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Quote:

Do you think the Sharks lack of depth is being exposed?
Lack of depth? One OT loss to the Blues and we have no depth? Amazing.


Quote:
Are these the real Sharks playing in close games and still getting a point, or are we the dominating team that was running over teams in October/November?
I would say we have fell a bit from the utter domination we were laying on teams, but still layin' it down. I mean ****, we can't dominate every game.

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Second, which two teams from the East do you pick to get to the Eastern Conference Finals?
Boston v. Habs.

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12-28-2008, 11:53 AM
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First of all, what does WRT stand for.

Secondly, I agree with Shape about the lack of depth. I didn't know we had a lack of depth, and even after one game, I still don't think we do. In fact, when Roenick and Mitchell get healthy, I see this team having more depth.

As for who comes out of the east, I could see the Bruins getting upset by someone like the Penguins. That would be a great ECF.

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12-28-2008, 12:00 PM
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Originally Posted by sharkie551 View Post
First of all, what does WRT stand for.
With Regard/Respect To.

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12-28-2008, 12:01 PM
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Originally Posted by sharkie551 View Post
First of all, what does WRT stand for.
I believe "With Regards To"

The Sharks didn't play well, they didn't have their legs and they weren't playing crisp or making proper decisions. They just weren't there for this one and won't be for every game. If they keep this up for 5 more games then I will be worried.

Boston vs. Philly in a 7 gamer where Boston comes out.

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12-28-2008, 12:07 PM
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I just watched the game this morning. The Sharks were dominated last night by the blues. The blues played a great game against the sharks but both goals were soft ones Nabby let in.

Nabby right now is the weak link on the sharks and if his play doesn't improve. I don't think we'll get very far in the playoffs. I'm amazed our record is what it is with the goaltending we're getting from Nabby.

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12-28-2008, 12:11 PM
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Originally Posted by WineShark View Post
[*]Coaching staffs and scouting reports in the League are catching up with the Sharks new style of play and defensing their strategy better. The Blues are a case in point having both out-played the Men of Teal, and pressuring the point agressively to limit shots from the point.
Come playoffs, opposing teams will employ this tactic anyhow so the Sharks might as well get used to dealing with it now. The question, of course, is what would be the successful counter strategy? I'm not a hockey expert but it would seem like a forward should be open down low.

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12-28-2008, 12:32 PM
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Originally Posted by shoot the puck View Post
I just watched the game this morning. The Sharks were dominated last night by the blues. The blues played a great game against the sharks but both goals were soft ones Nabby let in.

Nabby right now is the weak link on the sharks and if his play doesn't improve. I don't think we'll get very far in the playoffs. I'm amazed our record is what it is with the goaltending we're getting from Nabby.
I agree that he's had some bad games, but he's also had good ones (see 33 shots against shutout). He needs to be more consistent and let in less weak ones.

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12-28-2008, 12:43 PM
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This IS the REAL Sharks team for sure. We gon play like this in the playoffs, dominating other rear ends, keeping the puck, you know that active hockey all the time, we gon shoot the puck much more than the opposite team in the playoffs too. I've seen enough of this team, we are faster and even stronger than any other team in the league. They don't have nothing on us.

We wanna lose some regular season games by intention, cause after that we can win something BIG.

And I think the Devils and the Penguins have the best teams in the east. After Marty comes back, the devils will be even stronger, but Clemmensen is winning games too, they are very good defensively and have people who can score, (Zajac's been great and they got others as well. So Boston ain't that great, Savard and those guys can't play defense the way NJ does. And Pittsburgh is more powerful offensively than any other team in the east, when those BIG games begin. So my picks are Pit and NJ. Boston and NY come after those clubs.

We rule the west, so I ain't worried. Sundin makes that horrible Nuck team better... but the Sedinz LOL, Demitra and that injury sucka Ohlund and their other injury suckas can't win in the PLAYOFFS. Ducks and the Wings are our worst enemies, so we gotta keep em close. Lemaire got that fire too, so just wait till the Minny starts winning again.

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12-28-2008, 12:56 PM
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As I said in the GDT: When we're winning, it doesn't matter, as the only thing that matters are playoff wins.

When we lose, it should be similar. Obviously, losses should be unacceptable, but I don't think a shootout loss against the Blues the day after Christmas break is really going to be anywhere near relevant come playoff time.

The Blues played the Sharks well, very well, but once the Sharks started to find their legs, they got some good zone time and started to put the Blues back on their heels. Of course, they lost their legs again in the third and OT, but once again, it wasn't straight up, all out hopeless domination. The Sharks beat themselves just as much as the Blues beat them.

I'd like to think that efforts like last night's won't be a problem come playoff time. And when the Sharks are playing 100%, there isn't a team in the league that can stop them.

And I'll say it will be the Penguins and Bruins in the East. Boston in 7.

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12-28-2008, 02:35 PM
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Boston beats SJ on depth. SJ beats Boston at the top end. Don't forget Ramsay is AC (former cup winning Bolts AC) for the offense this year in Boston and lo and behold, their offense picked up. In goal, Thomas melts under load; their best bet may be to start him 2 out of 3 in the playoffs to get optimum performance. No issue there with Nabby, but Nabby does have to get back to the top of his game.

In the east, the Bruins are the cream. However, if healthy, the Flyers and Caps will challenge. The Habs, Rags and Devils stumble when playing other teams who are on top of their game. It is hard to judge the Pens because they aren't contenders without Whitney and Gonchar. With them, we have yet to see.

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12-28-2008, 02:46 PM
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Although we might not be as dominating looking as we were in the beginning, it's always kinda hard to keep up and not really that necessary... a win is a win whether it's a blowout or just 3-1 victory; you gotta save some energy for the next game.
I agree Sharks aren't as effective as they used to be in the beginning of the season but I don't think anyone expected them to be. I mean, coaches of opposing teams aren't idiots and Sharks strategies aren't so super complicated to interpret.

and Caps vs Bruins FTW!

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12-28-2008, 03:06 PM
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LOL @ the OP thinking the Sharks have a "lack of depth".

Watching the game last night, the Sharks beat themselves more than anything. Come playoffs, I'm not worried about a thing.

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12-28-2008, 03:24 PM
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Originally Posted by jmerv View Post
LOL @ the OP thinking the Sharks have a "lack of depth".

Watching the game last night, the Sharks beat themselves more than anything. Come playoffs, I'm not worried about a thing.

Did you just L.O.L. at Wineshark?

Thanks for the vote of confidence, having watched the game last night - but I do believe the OP may be a bit more savvy about the Sharks depth (or lack thereof) than the more casual observer

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12-28-2008, 03:29 PM
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Did you just L.O.L. at Wineshark?

Thanks for the vote of confidence, having watched the game last night - but I do believe the OP may be a bit more savvy about the Sharks depth (or lack thereof) than the more casual observer
More than WS. The poster should doublecheck when several are confirming WS. I won't go into the longwinded details of the comparison, but the B's and the Sharks are close with edges to either side in different areas. I have watched a fair amount of the B's this year just to get a heads up on their improvement, although I am still stronger on southeast (Caps, Canes, etc.).

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12-28-2008, 11:25 PM
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http://www.boston.com/sports/hockey/...ad_1230511893/

After tonight, we are even with the B's for points. I'm not trying to pop anyone's balloon regarding our dominating play -but want to look at where we are starting 2009.

To my way of thinking, the B's are playing to their ability and ahead of the curve in development. The Sharks have paid their dues, have all the pieces, but while we have a better top line, I like their depth better. For those faint of heart, I'm not saying the Sharks are going to lose to the B's in the Finals ........ honestly, I think the Sharks biggest hurdle is getting out of the West.

In the East, I love the B's and think at this stage, Philadelphia, Pittsburgh, Washington; Montreal, New Jersey, and the Rangers are the likely candidates. That said, I'm going to predict the B's fold early based on lack of P/O experience, and the ECF will be New Jersey and Carolina.

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12-28-2008, 11:33 PM
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That said, I'm going to predict the B's fold early based on lack of P/O experience, and the ECF will be New Jersey and Carolina.
Now that is a crazy out of nowhere combination (well I could see the Devils). Touche WS, touche

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12-28-2008, 11:47 PM
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Originally Posted by WineShark View Post
http://www.boston.com/sports/hockey/...ad_1230511893/

After tonight, we are even with the B's for points. I'm not trying to pop anyone's balloon regarding our dominating play -but want to look at where we are starting 2009.

To my way of thinking, the B's are playing to their ability and ahead of the curve in development. The Sharks have paid their dues, have all the pieces, but while we have a better top line, I like their depth better. For those faint of heart, I'm not saying the Sharks are going to lose to the B's in the Finals ........ honestly, I think the Sharks biggest hurdle is getting out of the West.

In the East, I love the B's and think at this stage, Philadelphia, Pittsburgh, Washington; Montreal, New Jersey, and the Rangers are the likely candidates. That said, I'm going to predict the B's fold early based on lack of P/O experience, and the ECF will be New Jersey and Carolina.
I've said it before... I WISH the Sharks played Atlanta, Toronto, Carolina, Tampa Bay as much as Boston does... Boston just FEEDS on those horrible East Coast teams. Boston played Atlanta 3 times this month. Though I blame some of the fact that they're winning against these types of teams, they are blowing them out and scoring a lot, whereas the Sharks scoring has suddenly halted.

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12-28-2008, 11:49 PM
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Now that is a crazy out of nowhere combination (well I could see the Devils). Touche WS, touche
I can go with almost anyone out of the East, but playoff experience has to play into the discussion, not regular season success. The Rangers are of interest for sure. Montreal, Boston and to a lesser extent Phily are high on the list but still lack experience. Washington is hard to take as a serious contender for me.

If Brodeur comes back this year and he can play, the Devils have to be considered in the mix. The Canes are a dark horse and it a lot has to go right, but they have an easier time getting to the playoffs, several interesting vets, and have a coach who if he can get the attention of his team, could drag out a long post season string. I admit the Canes are a darkhorse though. But who out of the East is the team with experience, a core who has played together for some time, good coaching, playoff goal tending, depth and a high skill level? Most of the East teams have players and no real deep playoffs experience, or aging players with playoff experience. Several in the West have both.

I still think the Sharks have to get out of the West first. Detroit, Anaheim, and maybe Calgary are the teams out of the West who can give us trouble. The Hawks are a sentimental favorite but there is no way the Sharks are stopped by them in a 7 game series.

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12-29-2008, 01:32 AM
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There's a pattern other teams are following to beat us. In our 4-0 loss to Anaheim, they challenged us to a hitting contest and they creamed us because that's not our game. Against St. Louis and Columbus, they played a dump, chase and physically challenge the Sharks defense, and our defenders really aren't going to win a physicality contest down low.

For all of our team's strengths, we can't get into these contests of who can out-hit who. We'll occasionally win them, but we don't have the players to play that type of game. Against these teams we need to be quicker off the puck and provide better support. Quick, short and smart passes to clear our zone and avoid the forecheckers. Longer breakout passes don't work as well since they're either playing a trap or a 1-2-2 lock which limits our quick strike ability.

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12-29-2008, 01:50 AM
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Hey all. I've watched Sharks hockey since the Cow Palace and when Sportschannel would scramble the 30 games or so they showed if you didn't subscribe. With that said, this is the best Sharks team they've ever had. They've hit the wall a little bit yes, but thats to be expected. These kind of questions get brought up because Boston is on a tear and are now the flavor of the week. As long as the sharks are playing solid, puck-possession hockey in April things will be fine.

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12-29-2008, 03:01 AM
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Doesn't the fact that when the Sharks top players were failing to score against the Blues, a thrown together line that had two guys who had been, recently and less recently, demoted to 4th line duty scored both goals imply that the Sharks do have depth? And the balance of the scoring (although the top line is getting a larger share)? Unless you mean something different by depth (I agree the minor cupboard is rather bare, I don't get why McGinn hasn't gotten a longer chance). I mean, the Sharks were missing what, 5, 6 forwards who would have started the first game of the season to injury recently (Pavs, Cheech, Milan, Roenick, Mitchell, someone I['m forgetting?). The fact they're competitive at all under that condition seems to imply depth to me. I don't ever see the B's though, so they might have more than the Sharks. I still heart Marco, I hope the Bruins do well (although I also wouldn't be surprised to see them bounced early in the playoffs, I agree with WS that the West scares me a lot more than any Eastern team).

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12-29-2008, 07:07 AM
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Originally Posted by WineShark View Post
http://www.boston.com/sports/hockey/...ad_1230511893/

After tonight, we are even with the B's for points. I'm not trying to pop anyone's balloon regarding our dominating play -but want to look at where we are starting 2009.

To my way of thinking, the B's are playing to their ability and ahead of the curve in development. The Sharks have paid their dues, have all the pieces, but while we have a better top line, I like their depth better. For those faint of heart, I'm not saying the Sharks are going to lose to the B's in the Finals ........ honestly, I think the Sharks biggest hurdle is getting out of the West.

In the East, I love the B's and think at this stage, Philadelphia, Pittsburgh, Washington; Montreal, New Jersey, and the Rangers are the likely candidates. That said, I'm going to predict the B's fold early based on lack of P/O experience, and the ECF will be New Jersey and Carolina.
No on the Canes. Their second line is too old and their blueline (even when healthy) leaves a lot to be desired. I have watched them a lot and they are aimed for a nosedive. The second line backcheck is too slow to support the blueline and they are winning when they don't face speed/transition. Their boardwork also leaves a lot to be desired. I doubt that the Canes make the playoffs. I would give higher odds to the Cats being the second team to make it out of the Southeast if the division gets a second team to the POs.

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12-29-2008, 08:40 AM
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i come in peace (gotta get that out of the way early) i just wanted to throw my two cents in. obviously as a bruins fan i see every boston game and a lot more of the eastern conference. the east and west is much closer than i think you want to believe. in the recent past the west has certainly had the better teams but this year is closer.

boston has played the southeast a bunch recently but they are doing it with a lot of injuries. (sturm bergeron ward ference) thats a lot of important players out with injuries for an extended period of time. plus boston has played a ton of road games so far. that sorta balances the easy schedule. (san jose has played a ton of home games) the recent rash of close games for boston has a lot to do with the injuries piling up. particularly sturm and bergeron. hurts our powerplay and completely kills our third line. without bergeron and sturm, kobasew is stuck with yelle and axelsson (read terrible offensive players) and chucky just doesnt create a lot for himself he needs a playmaker with him.

boston really hasnt had a chance to be healthy all year. their top two lines are carrying them. look no further than the league leaders in plus minus. lets just say those top two lines and the top defensman are running that show.

a third line of sturm bergeron kobasew will be deadly when they all get healthy (hopefully just in time for the feb meeting with the sharks)

i'd love a san jose boston finals. the returns of thornton and sturm would be fun.

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12-29-2008, 01:40 PM
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i come in peace (gotta get that out of the way early) i just wanted to throw my two cents in. obviously as a bruins fan i see every boston game and a lot more of the eastern conference. the east and west is much closer than i think you want to believe. in the recent past the west has certainly had the better teams but this year is closer.

boston has played the southeast a bunch recently but they are doing it with a lot of injuries. (sturm bergeron ward ference) thats a lot of important players out with injuries for an extended period of time. plus boston has played a ton of road games so far. that sorta balances the easy schedule. (san jose has played a ton of home games) the recent rash of close games for boston has a lot to do with the injuries piling up. particularly sturm and bergeron. hurts our powerplay and completely kills our third line. without bergeron and sturm, kobasew is stuck with yelle and axelsson (read terrible offensive players) and chucky just doesnt create a lot for himself he needs a playmaker with him.

boston really hasnt had a chance to be healthy all year. their top two lines are carrying them. look no further than the league leaders in plus minus. lets just say those top two lines and the top defensman are running that show.

a third line of sturm bergeron kobasew will be deadly when they all get healthy (hopefully just in time for the feb meeting with the sharks)

i'd love a san jose boston finals. the returns of thornton and sturm would be fun.
Its nice for the B fans to get a good team again. There is better depth in Boston IMO, but it takes more as we've discovered to win a cup. Health comes into play. The experience of the playoffs is as critical as anything in getting to the top and the B's lack the players on the team that can carry them deep into the ECF I believe. That said, its not out of the question that they can win the Presidents Trophy either.

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