Wednesday, May 11, 2011

Blow them up?


What people don't know about the San Jose Sharks logo is that after it bites the hockey stick, it tries to swallow it and chokes to death.

That was courtesy of @sportspickle, the humorous sports web site/Twitter account, after Detroit's victory in Game 6 Tuesday to become yet another team to force a Game 7 after being down 3-0 in the series.

My joke: If the movie "Jaws" was patterned after the San Jose Sharks, no one would've died.

I also need to figure something out. Is San Jose the Washington of the West, or is Washington the San Jose of the East? Also, does anyone expect the Sharks to actually win their Game 7 with Detroit? I certainly don't, and I'd love for someone to give me any reason why I should change my mind.

So let's think about something. If, indeed, Detroit pulls off the stunner-that-really-isn't-a-stunner, does general manager Doug Wilson pull a Chief Brody and blow up Jaws, er, the Sharks?

It's strange. San Jose has a Hart Trophy winner (Joe Thornton), a two-time 50-goal scorer (Dany Heatley), a five-time 30-goal (and one-time 40-goal) scorer in Patrick Marleau, a Norris-caliber defenseman in Dan Boyle, and a Stanley Cup-winning goalie in Antti Niemi.

Then there's the USA's second-greatest centerman, Joe Pavelski, plus a possible Calder winner in Logan Couture. Ryane Clowe is an excellent agitator/power forward. Devin Setoguchi is a competent top-six forward.

Why does this team suck?

The following is a phrase I'll probably only ever use once and this one time only: I agree with Jeremy Roenick. Patrick Marleau is gutless. He does lack heart. The same apparently for a lot of Marleau's teammates. The Sharks should stop worrying about what an analyst says - he's paid to give his opinion, and his opinion is what we got, I see no reason why there was an uproar over it - and start trying to figure out how to close out a series.

If San Jose crashes and burns Thursday night, doesn't Wilson have to change something? His problem is Marleau, Thornton, Heatley, Pavelski and Boyle are all signed for the next three years. That's his core, but if his core continues to fail in the postseason, then clearly it's not a core that can succeed. Those five guys are the veterans, the expected point producers.

Failure in the 2011 postseason does not belong on Couture's shoulders, or Clowe's, or even Niemi's. Niemi was fabulous in Game 6, but the woeful team in front of him laid down like dogs.

Maybe Wilson doesn't change anything this offseason even if San Jose loses Game 7, which we all know it will. But if I'm a Sharks fan, and this team doesn't reach the conference final, I question whether that roster is capable of being winners.

There certainly isn't any evidence that they can win.

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