Holy shit, what in God’s name is happening to the Sharks?!?!?
This is the new San Jose Sharks mascot.
That’s seems to be the sentiment of Sharks fans out there in the nether regions of the interwebz. The Sharks are imploding, they’re panicking, they’re driving away their best player and fan favorite, they’re moving to Seattle, they’re smoking crack with Rob Ford, they’re not watching the World Cup, I mean come on you guys, these are some serious accusations.
But let’s not forget that many of these things haven’t actually happened yet, and they’re all called rumors for a reason. Here’s what has been going on so far.
Dan Boyle and Martin Havlat are no longer on the team.
Martin Havlat never quite fit in with the Sharks. And now he’s gone, getting bought out of his stupid $5 million salary, which was really just a less stupid salary than the $7.5 million the Sharks were paying to Dany Heatley, and the Wild were stupid enough to take on. Win win, sort of.
Obviously Boyle is the bigger name on this one. He’s the Sharks’ most prolific scoring defenseman in history, he’s been the point man on the top power play unit (and done a bang up job at it, I must add), and some other third thing. But the problem with Boyle is the problem with many of the Sharks core: he’s old. Boyle’s game has been slowing down the past few seasons, but ever since getting knocked out by Maxim Lapierre (if you don’t know who he is, look up “hillbilly scum bag”) he never looked like the same player. I hate to see him go – he’s a great guy, a good veteran leader, and it leaves a giant-sized hole in our defense.
Which leads me to…
Brent Burns is moving back to defense.
The ladies can’t get enough of Burns’ D.
I’m mixed on this one. It seemed like the Burns-Thornton-Hertl line was killing it, so this feels like a panic move. Plus in Burns’ short time spent on defense with the Sharks, he was mediocre at best. If he can be a bruising guy that plays with a lot of skill, a la Drew Doughty, that’d be cool. Much less, and I think it’s an overreaction, and a mistake that leads to more problems than solutions. The Sharks have enough young defensemen to form a solid group, and Burns is more needed up front.
The Sharks open the season in L.A.
And they get to watch the Kings raise their Stanley Cup Champions banner into the rafters of the Staples Center. Fuck me.
Brent Burns and Patrick Marleau are up for some awards or something.
Now, the rumors!
Joe Thornton and Patrick Marleau are leaving!
This is stupid. Or at least would be really stupid if it actually happened. Trading your two best forwards doesn’t make your team better. Let’s not forget Thornton had 61 assists last year, and if you think Pavelski ever tops 40 goals without Jumbo as his centerman, you must be crazier than Raffi Torres. Look, I love the young core (which somehow includes the soon-to-be 30 year-old Joe Pavelski), but this team needs Thornton and Marleau to push for the Cup, and probably needs them in order to make the playoffs.
The team is leaving!
It was reported that the Sharks made some bad TV deal and wanted more money. That somehow got transformed into “the Sharks are moving.” I highly doubt this happens, but I also never thought Dustin Hillbilly Brown would ever lift the Stanley Cup – let alone twice. God I hate that he’s won it twice. And now he’s making more money than our captain, with far less production and skill.
Anyway, I’m probably wrong about all of this and will have to eat my words in a few weeks (maybe in the form of pie? mmm…pie), but I hope not. The Sharks are a savvy organization and I think once the sting of defeat heals up, they’ll see the light and do what’s right to find their way out of this plight. Otherwise, it’s a long season and a tough fight.