The San Jose Sharks took a big step a year ago in turning their lofty playoff expectations into reality, and there is no reason to think they will not take another step towards their ultimate goal of a Stanley Cup Championship. Sure this team may not have performed all that well against the Chicago Blackhawks in last year’s Western Conference Finals, but most of those games were one goal affairs and instead of being deflated at the loss they should feel encouraged that they are poised for another strong post season run.
Head Coach Todd McLellan has had a hard time shaking off his Red and White shade of being a former assistant for the Detroit Red Wings. He employs that same system with the Sharks that he did in the Motor City. He is a no nonsense coach who keeps his team on the attack. He wants them to stay sharp and force the other team into making mistakes.
The most surprising move came last June when they parted ways with Goalie Evengi Nabokov. He was a very good regular season goalie, but failed to elevate his game to elite status in the playoffs. Now the Sharks are gambling that Antero Nittymaki is the man to get them over the hump. This team is hoping RW Devin Setoguchi can have a second breakout season. Two years ago he racked up 65 points, lat year that production dropped to 36. The Sharks need him to step up and produce.
Key Additions- G Antero Nittymaki, D Mike Vernace
Key Subtractions- D Rob Blake, RW Brad Staubitz, C Manny Maholtra, G Henrik Karlsson, and D Mike Vernace